1. COCONUT

It’s referred to as the “Tree of Life”. Coconut oil is one of these products; it is processed very differently in the body, getting converted directly to energy unlike other oils that get stored as fat in the body. Its high melting point makes it one of the best and safest oils to cook with. The medium chain triglycerides (MCT) in coconut oil have shown to increase metabolic rate and reduce appetite making it ideal for those looking to lose weight. Rich in vitamins, especially vitamin E, it protects hair against damage; moisturises your skin and functions as a natural sunscreen. Additionally, coconut water is the most balanced electrolyte source in nature, making it ideal during a workout, if you have diarrhoea or a fever.

superfoods

2. YOGURT

Often described as a probiotic food, yogurt is one of the few foods that reinforce the intestines with additional “friendly” bacteria, promoting the growth of intestinal flora. The bacteria of the intestinal flora aids digestion and absorption of food, produces B vitamins, prevents the growth of pathogenic bacteria (Candida) which causes diseases, and inhibits internal decay; they also promote a healthy intestinal acidity. Those who have a sweet tooth, are on antibiotics and drink chlorinated water would do well to include yogurt in their diet. It is also a great source of protein, vitamins A, D, B complex, calcium, potassium, sodium and phosphorus. In addition, it is also readily digestible for those who are lactose intolerant.

  1. WALNUTS

One of the richest sources of antioxidants; the mighty walnut aids cognitive function and sharpen memory. It also protects the heart by preventing arrhythmia, lowers cholesterol and protects the arteries from damage. Its most valuable trait is its ability to fight inflammation, i.e. inflammation of the joints, skin, and arteries causing high blood pressure, strokes, heart disease and osteoporosis. Eating a few walnuts a day will reduce this risk and especially after a meal can counter the harmful effects of the fat you’ve eaten during the meal.

  1. SPROUTS

This is a highly nutritious vegetable that can grow in any climate, can be planted any day of the year, doesn’t require soil or direct sunshine and can be eaten raw or cooked. It contains a long list of vitamins including A, C, D, E, K, B complex, calcium, phosphorous, potassium, magnesium, iron, quality protein and enzymes. During germination of the sprouts the vitamins, enzymes and protein all increase in quantity and quality hence the reference “the most living food in the world”.

  1. GARLIC

Used in rituals to ward off evil spirits, today this bulb is added to any savoury dish to bolster its flavor. Its most potent property stems from a rich supply of compounds containing sulphur which gives it its distinctive aroma. It is also a boon for those looking to lose weight. It lowers blood levels of insulin, reducing the risk of weight-related issues like metabolic syndrome, diabetes and lowers blood pressure. Those who exercise and consume high-protein diets tend to build up inflammatory responses in the body which reduces one’s immunity. This can be counteracted by adding a few cloves to their diet. A potent anti-microbial, it boosts the production of white blood cells and fights off bacteria, parasites, fungi and viruses. Allicin, which is released when the clove is crushed, helps in the elimination of cholesterol from the body, lowers triglycerides, detoxifies the liver and acts as a potent anti-inflammatory.

  1. RICE

During the milling process the rice is polished, which means the vitamins and fibre are removed and you are left with a high starchy grain that contributes to weight gain and diabetes, making it all the more important to avoid white rice. Alternatively, unpolished rice comes in many varieties—Brown, Red and Purple. It is high in the B vitamins and is a staple for nearly half the world’s population. Its high fibre aids digestion, soothes the intestinal tract, lowers cholesterol, increases hair growth, improves mood and as a complex carbohydrate stabilises energy and insulin levels reducing cravings. It is also great for those who have gluten intolerance as rice is gluten free.

  1. FLAXSEED

Also referred to as linseed, this tiny super-seed is one of the richest sources of Omega 3 fatty acids in nature. This is the ultimate brain food allowing the brain and the nervous system to communicate properly. It boosts mental alertness, lifts depression, aids concentration and increases energy levels. Our ancestors had a diet that had a ratio of 1:1 with regards to Omega 3 and Omega 6, however today our diets are more skewed towards Omega 6. This imbalance is thought to be the root of most of our diseases. Including a tablespoon a day to your diet will help realign this imbalance.

  1. SPIRULINA

Once, so highly prized it was used as currency, this blue green alga is now sold as a supplement. Spirulina is 65 to 70 percent protein, a complete protein which is a rarity in the plant kingdom. This protein is so well balanced it is five times more easily digestible than meat, fish or soy. Like pollen it is the only plant food that provides vitamin B12 which is lacking in most vegetarian diets. It is regarded as the most nutritionally concentrated plant food in nature. It also contains chlorophyll which detoxifies the liver, prevents tooth decay and reduces inflammation.

  1. ROE

Fish eggs, fish Roe and caviar are some of the names used to describe this food. When people think of caviar, they automatically think of Beluga Caviar and the hefty price tag that comes along with it. However, any fish that spawns and produces eggs will do. This food used to be quite popular in the past and rightly so, its high Vitamin D content rivals cod liver oil, but unlike cod liver oil it actually tastes pretty good. It is also rich is fish oils and Omega 3 oils making it ideal brain food. Many indigenous cultures located near the ocean also use this to feed their expecting mothers and their newborn babies as it is perfectly safe to eat and highly nutritious.

  1. LIVER

You would be surprised to know that it contains more nutrients, gram for gram, than any other food. Apart from providing high quality protein, it’s also nature’s highest source of Vitamin A, all the B vitamins, best source of folic acid and copper, easily absorbable form of iron and CoQ10 (Co-Enzyme Q10 which is found in every cell of the body and releases 95 percent of the energy required for life). It was once thought to be a delicacy and in some cultures is still highly prized. Liver has gotten a bad rap over the years because of its function of processing toxins and its high Vitamin A content that is toxic. However, the liver doesn’t store toxins and the Vitamin A that was found to be toxic in high doses was the synthetic variety that you get from supplements and multivitamins.

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