‘Superfood’ is loosely defined as food of high nutritional level which contributes to overall well-being. It is commonly used as a marketing term by food companies and health gurus to promote a certain food/food product. Most ‘superfoods’ tend to be ‘exotic’ natural foods such as goji berries, coconut oil and chia seeds, and they can be costly.
In EU (European Union), food companies are banned from using this term unless they are supported by scientific evidences. Consumers need to be aware that there is no single food including superfood that contains all essential nutrients required for good health. If the quality of our diet is poor to begin with, not even the so-called superfood is able to undo the damage done to our body.
Choosing to eat healthy is a choice, and by making small changes to your diet, you are setting yourself up for success. Below are some healthy eating strategies that you can incorporate today for a healthier lifestyle:
Start your day right by eating a healthy breakfast
Wholegrains such as oats, wholemeal breads and brown rice are high in dietary fibre, vitamin B and minerals. Not only do they keep you full for longer periods (good for people who are watching their weight), they have cholesterol-lowering properties that help to reduce your risk of stroke and heart attack.
Reduce the portion size of unhealthy food
Swearing off certain food can be an uphill task for most people. You may try to reduce the portion size of unhealthy food and make up the rest with healthier options. For example, you can replace half of your Biryani rice with plain steamed rice.
Choose unsweetened beverages
Sugar sweetened beverages such as commercial fruit juice, soft drinks, sweetened tea and coffee can contribute significantly to your daily calorie intake which may lead to weight gain. Replace these beverages with plain water, plain tea (e.g. Chinese tea, Green tea) or coffee with less sugar.
Choose healthier snacks
People often mistake the thirst for hunger in between meals. Before you reach out for that bag of chips, drink a glass of water and wait for 5-10 minutes. If you are still hungry, choose nutritious snacks such as a piece of fruit, a small tub of plain yoghurt or a small handful of unsalted nuts.