Superfoods: Let us break the myth already!

by amita mishra

I am sure everybody has been mentioning this word now and telling you that, ‘why don’t you just switch to superfoods, that would be enough to get you super healthy and make you lose fat.’ Let us first understand what this so called superfood is.

Superfoods are those foods which have a variety of nutritional benefits and is believed to have weight loss properties or even disease preventing properties; but these are not grouped into any food category. They are mainly a marketing gimmick and this works very well especially for those of us that are desperate to get healthy but want a quick fix. This word is coined by the food and the pharmaceutical industry, so that they can keep coming with one superfood each time to keep their sales high.

The word is very appealing; but if we talk about one word which we can say is a lie that would be a ‘superfood’ [we can hear those hearts breaking].  if you eat a balanced diet with plenty of fruit and vegetables and do regular exercise, everything is a superfood. And if you don’t, no superfood will save you.

The usually ‘claimed’ superfoods are blueberries, açai, almonds, avocado, broccoli, cacao, chia seeds, eggs, garlic, goji, green tea, kale, kefir, mangosteen, pomegranate, salmon, seaweed, wheatgrass and all other exotic vegetables. People need to understand that everything that is not grown locally and where you are having to spend crazy amounts to be fit is not always the right way to look at things. If its grown locally, its looked down upon but if its exotic and ultra-expensive we tend have a mindset towards purchasing higher priced products; it’s not that these foods don’t have great nutritional benefits as it is a fact that all of them are very rich in antioxidants; but we cannot solely rely on just one of these to think that it would make us extremely healthy. Anything that comes out of mother earth, is ‘fresh’ and in ‘season’ will definitely have great therapeutic properties. You don’t believe us? Google any random vegetable that is lying in your fridge and you will be amazed by its nutrient value.

All these fancy terms are just fads created to benefit the company itself, stop looking at each food as a rich or poor source of anything. Every food will be different in its properties. So if you really need the “super” out of your food include diversity. There are more than 44000 pulse varieties in India; variety of grains, and endless variety of vegetable and fruits, which change from region to region, season to season and house to house depending on what you cook. In such a diverse country, do you think one food will fit all or can be a magical Savior to all your problems?

Let us make sure to understand the environment, weather, our own bodies and minds to get a better understanding of what we should be eating.

We have different relationships with different people for all our needs, so why that bias and pressure on that one food for all your needs ? Got the point?

                                                           So lets choose diversity for our health and not just a single food item.

If you want to know what’s in season refer to our article This time of the year!

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