It may come as a shock to regular readers of health publications, but there is no such thing as a superfood. While sensational headlines are full of magical foods that can transform your life, no particular food can cure a disease unless your disease is caused by the lack of a particular nutrient a particular food may contain.
Real foods, on the other hand, contain all the valuable macro- and micro-nutrients that make them essential to maintaining your well-being. Fruits and vegetables, no surprise, top the list of real foods we should be eating plenty of. Photo credit: Shutterstock
Scurvy, for instance, which is caused by a lack of vitamin C, might be cured by consuming oranges. No single food will add years to your life, make you jump higher, melt your body fat, erase your crow’s feet or smooth your cellulite. Scientific studies have shown us that no particular diet, be it high-protein, low-carbohydrate, vegan, paleo, low-fat, gluten-free, low-glycemic, dairy-free or any combination thereof is the best diet. Rather, it seems the magic bullet is choosing a variety of real foods and avoiding processed foods as much as possible. Eating a diet rich in a variety of the right foods will increase the odds in your favor of living a longer life free of chronic illness.
Processed foods are all the products you find in your supermarket, mostly in the middle aisles, packaged in jars, cans, boxes and other assorted containers. While the long list of additives in these foods will not, for the most part, harm you (unless you have a particular allergy), these foods do not contain the nutrition that real foods, the ones you usually find on the perimeter of your supermarket, contain. Processed foods, in order to preserve them and fit them into packages, have had vital ingredients removed and then, to make them taste better, usually have had loads of sugar and salt added back in. Real foods, on the other hand, contain all the valuable macro- and micro-nutrients that make them essential to maintaining your well-being. Fruits and vegetables, no surprise, top the list of real foods we should be eating plenty of.
Here are 24 fruits and vegetables that you should consider including in your diet:
Raspberries are rich in quercetin and gallic acid, which are flavonoids linked to healthy heart function and they provide protection against obesity. Raspberries have also been shown to promote healthy cell life and regulate normal cell death.
Oranges are high in vitamin C, a powerful antioxidant that helps protect the body against free radicals, which are roaming atoms with an unpaired electron. Free radicals can damage cells. Vitamin C renders free radicals harmless by pairing off the free electron. Oranges also contain a flavonoid called herperidin, which is contained in the white part of the orange peel. Hesperidin has been shown to help regulate blood pressure.