Thursday, October 23, 2014

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Adding 'Super Foods' to Your Diet Can Lead to Multiple Benefits

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The latest Wellness Report takes a look at some so-called "super foods" and explains what's so super about them. NY1's Jill Urban filed the following report.

We often hear the term "super foods," but what are they, and what makes them so super?"

"Super foods are awesome because they're kind of this big bite of multitasking for the body," says Dasha Libin, a sports and nutrition expert. "What they basically do is, they provide a slew of vitamins, nutrients, antioxidants, and they pretty much do it in a way where they balance out the body without effecting your hormonal levels."

NY1 asked Libin to show us some common super foods and explain why we should all include them in our diet.

One of her top picks is blueberries.

"Blueberries make it on the list of super foods pretty much every year," she says. "Everyone knows them as a huge anti-oxidant, but what people neglect to realize is, they're also high level of anti-inflammatories. If you had a hard workout, it actually helps the recovery. So blueberries are great for that reason."

As for greens, these days, kale is getting all the hype, but she said spinach tops her list as its easier to digest raw. It's packed with vitamin C, E and K, and it's loaded with antioxidants, but it's also high in iron.

Next on the list is eggs.

"Egg is a pretty exciting and amazing food," Libin says. "The egg white alone has so much protein in it and so little calories, so it's a great snack to take in anywhere and definitely fill your protein requirements for the day. And the egg yolk itself is actually one of the only natural foods that has natural vitamin D in it."

Another super food that doesn't always make the list is peppers. She says that they are the perfect finger food because its high-water content will fill you up, yet they are low in calories, and many people don't realize that they pack twice as much vitamin C as an orange.

Almonds are also another super food. They are great for satiety as long as you portion control them. They are a great source of healthy fat, and they are also high in potassium and magnesium.

Another food high in good fat is avocado.

"Most people are scared of avocados because they think they are fattening, but they're not," Libin says. "What they have in them is the good fat, the monosaturated fat. So what this does is, it lowers insulin levels and actually helps you fight fat storage."

These are just a few examples of some foods that really pack a healthy punch and can be super additions to your diet.

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