Superfoods do not belong to a specific food group but include a wide variety of foods that are packed with nutrients. They are gaining quite a bit of popularity because they are said to help with weight loss, ward off cancer and many other diseases, and generally improve your overall health and the quality of your life. But, it is not a good idea to blindly start eating these superfoods without actually knowing whether they live up to all the hype or not. You will need to find out how consuming certain superfoods will affect your body before you join the bandwagon. Here are some facts about some superfoods you need to know before you start eating them on a regular basis.
1. Coconut Oil
Many people consider coconut oil to be one of the healthiest oils available. No doubt it helps you lose weight because of the type of fat it contains, which is metabolized differently by your body than other kinds of fat. It also protects you against heart disease, diabetes, and Alzheimer’s. But the American Heart Association recommends against using oil because it has a very high amount, almost 82 percent, of saturated fat, which is actually bad for you. Consuming coconut oil on a regular basis actually raises the bad kind of cholesterol, LDL cholesterol, in your body. If you do consume coconut oil, do so in moderation. One tablespoon of coconut oil a day is more than enough for most adults.
Avocado is one of the most popular fruits these days because it contains “good” fats which protect you against diabetes, heart disease, osteoarthritis, and obesity, and it helps you live longer. Since it is rich in monosaturated fats, it helps lower the bad LDL cholesterol levels and raises the good HDL cholesterol levels. But if you are trying to lose weight, you need to eat it in moderation. You should not have more than 1 serving of the fruit, which is one-third of one fruit, per day. Avocado is high in calories, so if you end up eating too much of it, you might actually end up gaining weight.
3. Apple Cider Vinegar
There are claims about apple cider vinegar that say it protects your heart from diseases, keeps cancer at bay, fights infection, lowers blood sugar, and whitens teeth. Drinking apple cider vinegar can lower your blood sugar levels helping you stay fuller for longer so that you can lose weight, but there is no scientific evidence that shows it prevents cancer and heart disease or heals wounds. And as for your teeth, it may not whiten your teeth but may erode your enamel. You can add apple cider vinegar to your salads but do not drink too much of it in a day.
4. Red Wine
Red wine is definitely a favorite superfood of many. It is said to contain large amounts of antioxidants that protect your heart against diseases. According to some studies, those who drank moderate amounts of red wine had a lower risk of developing heart disease and diabetes than those who did not drink it at all. But if you drink too much of it, you can actually end up harming yourself, and you will end up with liver disease, heart disease, and cancer. Women should stick to 4 ounces of red wine a day and men can stick to 8.
Chocolate is said to contain large amounts of flavonoid antioxidants that can ward off heart diseases and diabetes and lowers your risk of stroke and memory loss as you age. But you should keep in mind that only the right kind of chocolate in moderate amounts is good for you. Darker the chocolate the better it is for you. If you have too much milk chocolate that mostly contains fat and sugar, it can backfire. If you do have dark chocolate try to limit yourself to 1 or 2 squares a day.