How super are super foods actually?

Tendencias | Por Kelby Jongen

03 July 2014 0 Respuesta

The science behind super foods: are they really super? The term ‘super food’ has become a popular buzzword in the language of food and health. Why? Because it’s healthy? Super foods give a  positive reaction to the body. They say it can give a healing effect. Super foods are pure and without additional ingredients, that’s why these products are often more expensive.

Top 5 of most popular super foods are:

1.    Gojiberry 
2.    Chiaseed 
3.    Acaiberry 
4.    Baobab 
5.    Cinnamon

Of course they have good influence on health and it’s a lot better than foods with additional ingredients. But  there is a lack of research  on the effects  of super foods on the human body. Below you can see some examples. 

What is the evidence? In order to distinguish the truth from the hype, it is important to look carefully at the scientific evidence behind the media’s super food claims. Blueberries: The berries’ high concentrations of a group of antioxidant plant compounds, especially those called anthocyanins, have been reported to inhibit the growth of cancerous human colon cells, as well as kill them off.

Antioxidants are molecules which protect the cells in the body from harmful free radicals. These free radicals come from sources such as cigarette smoke and alcohol, and are also produced naturally in the body during metabolism. Too many free radicals in the body can result in oxidative stress which, in turn, causes cell damage that can lead to age-related diseases like cancer, diabetes, and heart disease. Other fruits which have received super food status include açaí berries and pomegranates. The fruit pulp of açaí berries has been shown to have potent antioxidant properties, although any potential health benefits of this have yet to be confirmed in humans. 

Like pomegranate juice, beetroot has been proposed as a heart-healthy super food. Its high levels of nitrate are claimed to be converted by the body into nitric oxide which, among other functions, has been shown to lower blood pressure and the tendency for blood clotting in humans.

Looking closer 
These are just a handful of the many studies that have looked at the health properties of foods. At first glance, they appear to lend weight to the existence of certain super foods — certainly, the nutrients in these foods have been shown to have several health-promoting properties. But a closer look reveals the difficulty in applying the results of these studies to real diets. This is because the conditions under which foods are studied in the lab are often very different to the way these foods are normally consumed by people in their everyday lives. 

So what is you’re advise?