Moran Kilzi, certified nutritionist, Nutrition Coordinator at Leket Israel
It’s time to shatter the myth that “superfoods” are something expensive, hard to find and only eaten by health nuts. Superfoods are found in every supermarket and are probably already in your refrigerator right now.
What are superfoods?
Superfoods are highly nutritious and healthy foods that contain a variety of vitamins and minerals, antioxidants and phytochemicals.
Get to know superfoods
Fruits and Vegetables
Yes, you read that right. The fruits and vegetables that you can get at any supermarket, makolet or shuk are excellent superfoods. They are rich in fiber, vitamins, minerals and antioxidants. Every color of vegetable or fruit contains different active, beneficial phytochemicals. For this reason, it is recommended to eat five different colors of fruit and vegetables every day.
There are many different varieties of legumes, the best known of which are chickpeas, lentils, beans, peas and soybeans. Legumes are considered superfoods because of their high levels of protein, fiber, B vitamins and essential minerals including iron, calcium, zinc and magnesium. Sprouting legumes allows the body to digest and absorb their vitamins and minerals more easily.
Since we’ve already brought them up, let’s talk about sprouts. Sprouts are made from all kinds of seeds including legumes, alfalfa, broccoli and cabbage. If you don’t want to sprout at home, you can always buy prepackaged sprouts at the supermarket. Sprouts are some of the best known superfoods because of their uniquely high concentration of vitamins and minerals.
Often called “nature’s pharmacy”, the many varieties of herbs include parsley, dill, basil, mint, and oregano.
The healthiest way to eat herbs is in their natural state. They can be used in salads, soups and stews, herb salads or herbal drinks. Herbs are a concentrated powerhouse of health. They contain the green pigment chlorophyll, which is an excellent antioxidant, cancer-fighting carotenoids and many other health-promoting vitamins, minerals and antioxidants. Using flavorful herbs means that you can use less sodium-heavy salt and soup powder.
Nuts and Seeds
Almonds, walnuts, sesame and chia seeds are just a few of the many varieties of nuts and seeds all of which can be called superfoods. Nuts and seeds are rich in healthy fats like omega-3s and also contain calcium and iron.
⅓ head of lettuce
2 yellow peppers
1 cup cooked chickpeas
1 cup cooked broccoli
Handful of sprouts
Handful of chopped nana (spearmint) leaves
2 tbsp pumpkin or sunflower seeds
¼ cup chopped walnuts
For the dressing:
1 clove garlic, chopped
2 tbsp olive oil
½ lemon, juiced
Cut lettuce, tomatoes and peppers. Place them in a bowl with chickpeas, broccoli and other ingredients. Dress with olive oil, garlic, lemon juice and salt, mix well and enjoy!