From goji berries to acai, from spirulina powder to maca, we’ve all heard about the “must-have” superfoods that we should be including in our diets.
It’s true that superfoods such as these can pack a major punch of nutritional power into one small teaspoon or tablespoon giving us more antioxidants than what you would find in most regular foods.
However, in the midst of our love and obsession with adding superfoods to our diets, it’s easy for us to forget about common superfoods that you can find at any grocery store, nationwide.
Powerful Superfoods for Women and How They Help Improve Health:
When it comes to women’s health, the top concerns most females face or have concern over is aging, heart health, digestion, and weight. Some others may include hormonal balance and skin concerns.
No matter which of these applies to you or a woman you know, there are foods you can find at any supermarket nationwide that can help address each of these issues.
That’s why they’re worthy of being called superfoods and are ones you should be including in your diet every single day if you can for optimal health.
So, let’s jump in! Here are 5 very simple, powerful superfoods for women that you can find every single grocery store. Add them to your grocery list this week and eat up!
1. Green Apples
Green apples are one of the best sources of antioxidants and anti-cancer properties of all apple varieties (and fruits) for several reasons. Let’s look at some of the most noteworthy nutritional highlights they contain.
Green apples contain a unique type of acid known as malic acid in much higher quantities than regular apples. Malic acid has been shown to improve aging, heart health, and even drive away cancer.
Green apples are also lower in sugar than other types of apples and they’re friendlier to your blood sugar levels as a result. This may benefit both your skin and your weight due to the lower spike in insulin that happens when you eat green apples compared to most other types.
Green apples are also packed with Vitamin C and a special type of fiber unique to apples known as pectin.
Vitamin C helps reduce stress in the body and it enhances youthfulness by fighting wrinkles and improving collagen production. Pectin acts like beta-glucan fibers found in oats; it fills you up and helps reduce cholesterol in the bloodstream which keeps your heart healthy and your waistline in check. Pectin is also found in citrus fruits, but is higher per serving in apples with around 4 grams per small apple.
How to Enjoy:
Green apples offer the perfect blend of sweet and tart flavors, and they make a wonderful snack when eaten all on their own. Pair them with a quarter cup of raw almonds for a filling snack that includes some healthy protein and fats, or chop them up onto your next salad and cut them up and have them with your morning oatmeal.
Another tasty way to eat them is to chop and freeze them to use in smoothies for a unique spin on your normal smoothie that also tastes great.
Any way that you choose to enjoy green apples counts, but do be sure to buy them organic whenever you can since apples are one of the highest sources of pesticides when purchased in conventional form.
And don’t forget—always eat the peel of your apple. Most of the antioxidants and fiber is found in that bright, glowing green shell!
2. Ground Flax
Flaxseed is truly such an incredible food, especially for women. While chia seeds are more popular and also great for you, flaxseed has some unique benefits that make it one of the best superfoods for women out there.
Ground flaxseed (also referred to as flax meal) is one of the best sources of three important nutrients for your health: phytoestrogens, lignans, and ALA fats. Let’s look at what each one does for you and why these nutrients make flaxseed a true superfood for women.
Phytoestrogens do several things when consumed through dietary sources. First, they help reduce symptoms associated with menopause and they help the body eliminate harmful estrogens that we encounter through the environment and our diet, such as hormones and mock estrogens found in animal-based foods, cleaning products, beauty products, and hygiene supplies.
Even if you purchased all organic, hormone-free, and natural cleaning and beauty products, you are still exposed to mock estrogens that we encounter daily due the environments we live in and the many sources that mock estrogens are found. Taking in an overload of mock estrogens can affect your weight, mood, skin, and even lead to cancer.
Phytoestrogens help trigger a process that eliminates bad estrogens from the body and in return, they balance out your hormones and can prevent everything from acne to menopause symptoms, brain fog, and even weight gain in both women and men.
Flax is one of the highest sources of phytoestrogens and have been shown to reduce the risk of cancer due to their special phytoestrogenic properties. Other good sources of phytoestrogens include organic and non-GMO soy, fennel seeds, sesame seeds, berries, apples, carrots, and many other fruits, vegetables, and seeds.
Lignans are a special type of fiber found in flaxseed that help reduce cholesterol and improve heart health. They also stimulate digestion and help reduce constipation. Lignans have also been shown to fight cardiovascular disease and cancer as a result of how they keep the body running smoothly at optimal levels.
ALA (alpha-linolenic) fats are a special type of omega-3 fatty acid found among many plant-based foods with flax being one of the highest sources. ALA fats help promote good skin health, heart health, and they can also aid in weight loss by improving insulin levels and cholesterol levels.
How to Enjoy:
As you can see, flax is packed with goodness that makes it worth adding to your diet. And the best part? All you need is 2 tablespoons of ground flax a day to meet your daily requirements for essential fatty acids and to reap the benefits flax contains. Add a tablespoon to your oatmeal, a smoothie, or some oatmeal, or use it in place of breadcrumbs next time you bake.
Feeling more adventurous? Use ground flax in place of baking instead of flour; this trick can even help you eliminate the need for eggs since flax is a great egg replacer!
You’ve heard how great blueberries are for you, but raspberries are one of the best superfoods for women you can find at any grocery store and they’re a great addition to other berries you may already be enjoying in your diet.
Raspberries are higher in fiber than blueberries and strawberries, and they’re also rich in antioxidants such as Vitamin C and quercetin. Quercetin is one of the best antioxidants shown to help fight allergies and improve heart health, and it also helps relieve inflammation along with improve the look and feel of the skin.
Raspberries also contain 13 grams of fiber per cup, most of which is soluble fiber. Soluble fiber acts like a gel in the stomach; it soaks up liquids and helps keep you fuller longer and it helps eliminate toxins in the body.
You may have also heard raspberries are great for weight loss and this is because they’re a rich source of a compound known as ketones. Ketones help fight obesity in the body by improving insulin levels and boosting metabolism. Raspberries are one of the only fruits and vegetables that contains measurable amounts of ketones in such high amounts, and you don’t need to take a supplement to get the benefits.
Eating just one cup of raspberries a day can provide significant benefits for your skin, weight, heart, and there are multiple ways to enjoy them.
How to Enjoy:
Blend frozen raspberries into Greek yogurt, a smoothie, oatmeal, quinoa porridge, rye flakes, add them to a salad, or purée them and create your own jam without any added sugar in just minutes. You can also pair some raspberries with a square of dark chocolate as a heart-healthy snack or use them in place of sweeteners in a homemade salad dressing.
No matter how you enjoy these berries, they’re one of the best superfoods for women you can enjoy and are affordable in both frozen and fresh form. Opt for organic when you can since berries are also a high source of pesticides in conventional form.
Carrots are packed with benefits for women, especially when it comes to boosting hormone function and improving mood and skin health. Carrots help balance out hormones and reduce stress, and they are high in vitamins A, C, and E. They’re one of the best beauty-boosting foods you can eat and one of the best for your immune system.
In fact, studies have shown that carrots help fight the symptoms of PMS, menopause, and help fight cancer! This is because they’re so high in anti-inflammatory properties and so powerful at boosting immune health. Whether you eat them raw or cooked, carrots are a smart choice that every woman can benefit from eating. Since they’re high in fiber and low in starchy sugars compared to most starchy veggies like potatoes, they’re also great for your blood sugar levels and weight too.
How to Enjoy:
You likely don’t need someone to tell you how to eat carrots, but if you’re looking for more exciting ways to eat them besides just snacking on them raw, try them steamed and cooked with some lemon juice, fresh garlic clove, black pepper and kale. It’s a delicious option for a dinner side or a makes for the perfect bed of nutrition that you can top with a lean source of protein like fish or lentils.
You can also blend carrots into smoothies, juices, and even hot quinoa or oatmeal porridge for natural sweetness and an extra dose of veggies! For snacking option, dip some baby carrots into raw almond or cashew butter, or have a side with some raw almonds, walnuts, or pecans as a heart-healthy, skin-boosting snack!
You know you need your greens like spinach and kale, but if those are the only green foods on your plate you’re missing out on some major skin, digestive, and weight benefits found in one of the most common fruits out there: cucumbers!
Cucumbers are one of the best superfoods for women because their skins are high in a trace mineral known as silica. Silica helps fight aging and wrinkles which is why you may have heard that cucumbers are so good for your skin. Silica works by fighting fine lines and wrinkles helping to smooth the skin and create a natural, youthful glow. It also helps support collagen production of the skin which improves the overall strength of the hair, skin, and nails.
Cucumbers are also one of the most cleansing foods you can eat. They are full of water, Vitamin C, and potassium which you need for daily, optimal cleansing. This special trio helps boost daily detoxification and keeps things running smoothly, plus it helps fight bloating and water weight gain. This not only keeps your tummy happy but it also improves your skin since it fights the effects of excessive sodium and the buildup of toxins within the body.
There are just two things you should know about purchasing cucumbers. One, purchase them in organic form when you can and two, always eat the peel. Cucumbers are also high in pesticides when purchased in conventional form, and most their nutrients such as silica and Vitamin C are found in the peel. Plus, the peel is a good source of fiber to help keep you fuller longer.
How to Enjoy:
There are many ways you can enjoy cucumbers besides just snacking on them raw. One of the best ways is to chop and freeze them, and then use them in a smoothie. It’s a delicious and lower sugar replacement to bananas, and you can easily sweeten it up with some berries or green apple. Or, juice cucumbers with lemon, ginger, and your choice of greens for a cleansing green juice.
For meals, chop and toss cucumbers into any salad, soup, or make fresh gazpacho with cucumbers, tomatoes, and celery if you’re looking for a summertime soup dish. For a more basic option, dip cucumbers into hummus, raw almond or cashew butter, or just sprinkle a little lemon juice and black pepper on them to enjoy them as a light, tasty snack!
Other Superfoods to Add to Your Diet:
All fresh fruits, vegetables, greens, healthy fats from nuts and seeds, and lean, clean sources of protein like salmon, tuna, eggs, lentils, Greek yogurt, soybeans, and black beans are superfoods you can add to your diet today to reap the benefits.
Purchase the highest-quality versions of these when you can (such as organic) to get the most benefits, but don’t sweat it if you can’t purchase all organic every single week. And always remember that a clean diet rich in whole foods is ten times better for you than a diet with processed, cheaper foods and occasionally using a superfood powder.
So whether you love goji berries or not, you can fill your diet with these simple 5 superfoods and start seeing major benefits from each of them quickly.
Want superfood recipes? Check out these 10 delicious options!
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