(Natural News) Many misconceptions surround superfoods: cost, convenience, and familiarity. Australian publication Taste.com.au has listed 100 superfoods that can easily found in your local grocery stores and kitchen pantries. These superfoods are also budget-friendly, which means you don’t have to break the bank just to eat healthy. We have listed some of the more affordable superfoods.
Top 10 incredibly affordable superfoods
- Quinoa — According to Taste, quinoa is packed with all the essential amino acids that makes it an ideal vegetable protein source. The grain is also gluten-free and is rich in dietary fiber, which helps reduce the risk of heart disease, Type 2 diabetes, and certain cancers. Taste also touts that quinoa is rich in other essential minerals such as manganese, phosphorus, magnesium, and folate.
- Watercress and kale — Watercress and kale are ideal salad greens, and come cheap especially when they are in season. According to Taste, watercress is rich in disease-fighting antioxidants and is packed with essential nutrients such as vitamin C and beta-carotene. This green leafy vegetable also promotes iron absorption. Kale is an excellent source of beta-carotene, vitamin C, and antioxidants. This salad green also protects the cells from free radicals and has anti-cancer properties.
- Apples — The cliche of eating an apple a day really does the trick. Apples contain generous amounts of pectin, a soluble fiber that helps curb cholesterol levels. The fruit is also rich in the antioxidant quercetin, which provides sufficient protection against cancer and heart disease.
- Seeds — Chia, sesame, and sunflower seeds provide immense nutritional benefits. Chia seeds contain the highest levels of omega-3 fatty acids among all plants. High omega-3 levels may help mitigate the risk of diabetes, heart disease, and cancer along with easing joint stiffness. Chia seeds are also known to improve mental health. These seeds are abundant in omega-6 fatty acids, soluble fiber, and protein. Sesame seeds are high in vitamin E, protein, and healthy fats. They are also abundant in minerals such as magnesium, zinc, manganese, and calcium. Sunflower seeds contain high levels of vitamin E, antioxidants, and minerals including thiamin, iron, copper and zinc.
- Lentils and chickpeas — Lentils and chickpeas are excellent sources of plant protein and dietary fiber. Both soluble and insoluble fibers found in these legumes help reduce cholesterol levels, regulate blood glucose levels, and promote bowel health.
- Extra virgin olive oil — The oil’s minimal processing makes it an ideal oil for cooking. Extra virgin olive oil is packed with monounsaturated fatty acids at around 75 percent, and helps promote cardiovascular health by cutting back on cholesterol. It is also high in antioxidants such as lignans that can help stave off cancer, and polyphenols that can reduce inflammation.
- Spices — Spices such as garlic and ginger help provide health benefits way beyond their cooking use. Garlic is a renowned anti-viral and anti-bacterial spice, which provides excellent protection against infections. Garlic is also proven to keep stomach cancer at bay. Ginger on the other hand has anti-inflammatory properties that help fight arthritis and certain types of cancer.
- Berries — Blueberries, strawberries, blackberries, raspberries, kiwis, and goji berries are all excellent sources of antioxidants and vitamin C. They are packed with anti-inflammatory compounds that prevent diabetes and heart disease.
- Nuts — Nuts such as macadamia, walnuts, pecans, and pistachio are rich in omega-3 fatty acids, protein, dietary fiber, and antioxidants. The fatty acids found in these nuts reduce cholesterol levels and improve heart health.
- Yogurt — Natural and unsweetened Greek yogurt is known to carry ample amount of antibiotics, vitamin D, protein, calcium, and vitamin B.