5 Superfoods And The Best Way To Consume Them
Image Credit: Legumes | Image Credit: Unsplash.com

Superfoods are a powerhouse of nutrients with fewer calories and offer several health benefits to the body. They contain high levels of minerals, vitamins, and antioxidants. Currently, no food is classified as a superfood by any legal definition or universal standards. However, plant-based foods make up the major superfood list. 

We often consume several superfoods unknowingly. However, the question is: do we provide the correct treatment to them? If you wish to stay fit and lose weight, it is important to eat foods in the right way. When it comes to maintaining a healthy lifestyle, superfoods take centre stage owing to their several health benefits. These can boost your well-being. It is not just about incorporating them into your diet but also about understanding how to make the best use of them.  

Take a look at some of the superfoods and the best way to consume them:  

  • Almond    

Almonds are a popular snack among most individuals. But did you know soaking them improves their digestibility and nutrient absorption? Soaking almonds overnight activates enzymes that help break down phytic acid, a compound that allows nutrient absorption. The process enhances the availability of essential minerals like zinc and magnesium. Besides, vegans and people with lactose intolerance can use almond milk as a healthy alternative to dairy milk. Almonds can also be used in recipes like kheer, payasam, and others as they provide a nutty flavour. 

  • Quinoa    

It has gained immense popularity as a gluten-free alternative to grains. However, many people miss the step of rinsing quinoa before cooking. Quinoa contains a bitter coating called saponin, which can affect taste and digestion. A study in the Journal of the Science of Food and Agriculture stated that soaking quinoa for a short period of time (15 minutes) removes saponin and improves the taste of the cooked quinoa. Quinoa chicken with veggies or quinoa upma can be cooked as a healthy meal.  

  • Apples    

According to the study by the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry, apple skin contains dietary fibre, antioxidants, and other beneficial compounds that improve overall health. It is advisable to consume apples with their skin intact for maximum health benefits. Most of the nutritional value of apples remains on the skin. Besides, apple skin naturally produces wax, which slows down shrinkage and spoilage. In organic apples, apple seeds are also consumed. They are a good source of protein, lipids, essential fatty acids, vitamins, minerals, phytochemicals, and antioxidants. 

  • Broccoli    

This green vegetable is best consumed steamed rather than fried, baked, or boiled. Steaming helps to retain maximum nutrients, including vitamin C, folate, and antioxidants. Overcooking may lead to a loss of nutrients. Aim for a tender-crisp texture while steaming it. Steaming broccoli for a short time retains most of the nutrients. You can steam the broccoli and have it with lemon and parmesan, or have it in veggie salads.  

  • Legumes  

Always opt for dried legumes, which require soaking and cooking but provide a healthy and more natural option. Soaking dried legumes overnight reduces cooking time and improves digestibility. Never go for canned legumes, as they contain added salt and preservatives. Legumes such as chickpeas and rajma can be incorporated into your meal. You can make dal, chickpea salad, or Punjabi-style Rajma to get the most out of the legumes.