An active lifestyle calls for a diet that will allow you to sail through the day seamlessly. In the current times, being brisk is the key.
Hence men and women both, ensure that they never settle for less—while working or when they work out. Today, when lives are being increasingly defined by hectic schedules and ambitious undertakings, are people left with the time and leisure of preparing healthy meals? Protein supplements or energy bars can at times be unreliable due to some not so healthy ingredients. What is to be done then? Herein appears the option of capitalising on the superfoods. A natural way to consume the right mixture of proteins, minerals and vitamins is, to reach out to a Superfood.
Superfoods are like mini capsules with high potency that work both as an energy-source & medicine. Whether it is a quick Hiit workout or a hot yoga class, superfoods address all our needs—helping maintain high energy levels, better immune system, enhanced sleep patterns & better body shape. These natural foods reduce the risks posed by supplements and nourish the body. Working at the cellular level, they alter the hormone production and can be referred to as adaptogens. By lowering down the production of cortisol, they accentuate the production of serotonin (happy hormone) and remove stress, anxiety and considerably lower the risk of autoimmune diseases.
We have collated a list of five Superfoods that take no or little preparation time, but are undeniably effective.
Blueberries, Strawberries, Goji berries, don’t be fooled by their size. These small berries are highly potent. Goji berries are known to have 15 times more iron than spinach, 500 times more Vitamin C than oranges, a rich source of protein & contain 18 amino acids. Strawberries are low on calories, high in antioxidants & contain collagen that is the building block of our skin.
Blueberries are anti-inflammatory in nature, low on the glycemic index, lowers BP & rich in Vitamin C & K. You could add these to any dish for enhanced flavor & goodness.
Pro tip: Soak the Goji berries at night for better taste.
The true joys of life lie in small things and this holds true especially in the case of seeds. Chia Seeds, Hemp Seeds, Quinoa, Pumpkin Seeds, Sunflower Seeds, Flax Seeds, seeds offer a wide range to choose from and mind you, they are delicious! I add a good amount of chia seeds, quinoa & pumpkin seeds to my diet for Omega3s, protein, magnesium, iron, fiber & calcium. They are portable, quick to snack on and do not add to unhealthy forms of fats.
Pro Tip: Instead of buying trail mix, buy them separately and mix yourself.
I have to say, I am nuts about nuts and why not? The goodness of walnuts, almonds and cashew nuts can leave you full & craving for more. But the fact that nuts are loaded with good fats, they must be consumed in moderation. These are great for repairing the muscles with the protein content, omega 3s, calcium and polyphenols, which makes them good for heart health as well.
Pro tip: As per Ayurveda, soak almonds, cashew nuts & walnuts overnight to reverse their hot nature in summer season.
Owing to their probiotic nature, Yogurts are great for the gut ecosystem. They enhance digestion, improve immune system & works well with lactose intolerant population as well. This tangier & thicker version of yogurt is rich in proteins, contains good bacteria, is low on carbs and high in calcium. As per the famous health website ‘livestong.com’, one cup of greek yogurt is 50% less sodium than normal yogurt, contains about 13 to 20 grams of protein and contains only 9 grams of carbohydrates.
Pro Tip: Buy small quantities to consume quickly because Greek Yogurt has a tendency to go rancid rather quickly even when refrigerated.
Yet again a great & a natural source of protein to help with strength training, weight loss or body building, Spirulina has been a hit with people living an active lifestyle for a long time. A storehouse of 8 amino acids, it has 65% concentrated protein and heals the muscles faster. It contains high amount of iron, a high source of Vitamin B1, B2, A & K and because it is derived from blue green algae, it is rich in phytonutrients, chlorophyll & other enzymes.
Pro tip: Spirulina powder is more potent than the capsules.
Superfoods are surely the best bet to supplement your daily diet. But what should not be forgotten is that they are ‘supplements’ all the same and cannot ‘replace’ your everyday balanced diet. So a nutritious wholesome meal plan, peppered with these superfoods is the way to go!