"Superfoods" are everywhere: smoothies, groceries, health blogs. Blueberries, kale, and chia seeds supposedly fight cancer, help you lose weight, and boost your mood.
These foods may seem like diet miracles. Deeper analysis of popular superfoods shows that the "super" label may be more marketing than science.
A deeper analysis of these numbers reveals a different picture. According to Harney, kale's vitamins A, K, and iron aren't as beneficial as broccoli or brussel sprouts. It can also disrupt digestion.
You've probably seen chia-seed-containing energy bars, drinks, baked goods, and yoghurt cups. Global chia seed sales are expected to reach $1.5 billion by 2021. What's the fuss? Chia seeds contain antioxidants, omega-3s, fibre, iron, and calcium. They're marketed as preventing heart attacks and boosting HDL cholesterol.
2) Chia Seeds
This ancient South American grain has gained popularity in the last five years for its fibre, protein, and amino acids. It may aid in weight loss. Quinoa is versatile and high in fibre, but no human studies show it can help you lose weight.
A 1996 Tufts University study found that darker fruits have high levels of antioxidants, which reduce cancer risk and inflammation.
We know blueberries slow memory decline in older adults. They improve rat coordination and lower postmenopausal blood pressure. Are they a "superfood"?
While its antioxidant and vitamin levels make it a healthy addition to your diet, many other purported benefits are unproven. According to the NHS, there's little evidence that goji berries can combat cardiovascular disease and cancer or boost immune function. Most studies used purified fruit extracts, not what you find in stores.