Superfoods: salvation for the body or another advertising ploy?


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Seeds of chia, spirulina, quinoa, acai berries – these once exotic foods are increasingly part of our diet and are considered an integral part of a healthy diet. People are willing to pay a lot of money for “precious and nutritious” delicacies. But are the properties of superfoods justified by their inflated price?

What are Superfoods?

The list of “superfoods” is growing by the hour, not by day. Among the most famous are acai berries with their supposed antioxidant properties, protein-rich quinoa, chia seeds that contain omega-3 fatty acids, and even modest beets that change nitrogen oxide levels.

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There are more exotic options: freshwater algae chlorella – a plant saturated green, helping with immune diseases, diabetes, and cancer, a monthly portion of $120. Or blue-green algae (cyanobacteria), in particular spirulina, is another “immune-boosting” superfood with a high content of protein and vitamin B.

In terms of grams of spirulina costs about 30 times more expensive than meat. Source

Spirulina produces vitamin K and vitamin B12 – the latter in large quantities are found in meat and are often needed by vegetarians. However, there is no evidence that the form B12 produced by spirulina has the same fundamental properties and advantages as a natural vitamin.

What do the studies say?

There is not much scientific research on superfoods. In those that can be considered reliable, the vast majority of “striking results” are presented only in laboratory test tubes or on the example of rats, which were fed impressive amounts of “superfood” in its purest form.

Superfoods have long been passed into marketing tricks, although every fresh fruit and vegetable can be called miraculous.

All fruits and vegetables contain hundreds of different chemical compounds with beneficial properties. Plus, many products do not work separately. A good example is spinach and carrots: both contain carotene, which is best absorbed with fat (e.g., olive oil).

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So from time to time, eating a few favorite “superfoods” is not as effective as regularly and slightly eats a small variety of vegetables and greens.

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