They’re ordinary items that are probably in your refrigerator or kitchen pantry
right now: beans, blueberries, broccoli, oats, oranges, pumpkin, soy, spinach, green
or black tea, tomatoes, turkey, walnuts, wild salmon, and yogurt.
But these may not be ordinary foods at all. They may be so special, they’ve
earned the title “superfoods.” That’s the word from Steven G. Pratt, author of “SuperFoods
Rx: Fourteen Foods That Will Change Your Life.” His premise is that these vitamin-packed
goodies have superpowers when it comes to keeping us healthy, improving our well-being,
and helping us to live longer provided we do our part by eating them regularly, reports
The Rocky Mountain News.
Here are the 14 “superfoods” and the superpowers they bestow that are outlined
in “SuperFoods Rx”:
They lower cholesterol, fight heart disease, stabilize blood sugar, reduce obesity,
lessen cancer risk, and relieve hypertension.
–Eat four 1/2-cup servings a week. Don’t like beans? Substitute green beans, sugar
snap peas, green peas, or chick peas instead.
They lower the risk of heart disease and cancer and help maintain youthful, healthy
–Eat 1 to 2 cups a day. When they aren’t in season, eat cranberries, raspberries,
strawberries, cherries, currants, and purple grapes.
It boosts your immune system, reduces the incidence of cataracts, builds bones, and
fights birth defects and heart disease.
–Eat 1/2 to 1 cup a day. Can’t stand broccoli? Eat brussels sprouts, red and green
cabbage, cauliflower, bok choy, and kale.
Oats lower cholesterol, reduce the risk of heart disease and diabetes, and are high
in fiber and protein.
–Eat five to seven servings a week. Don’t want it that often? Try wheat germ, brown
rice, barley, wheat, buckwheat, rye, millet, and quinoa.
They support heart health while preventing cancer, stroke, diabetes, and other chronic
–Eat one a day. Want more variety? Try lemons, grapefruit, kumquats, tangerines,
It’s not just for pie. Pumpkin lowers the risk of various cancers, while it promotes
youthful, healthy skin.
–Eat 1/2 cup a day. Want an alternative? Try carrots, carrots, butternut squash,
sweet potatoes, and orange bell peppers.
It prevents heart disease, cancer, and osteoporosis, as well as relieves menopausal
and menstrual symptoms.
–Eat at least 15 grams daily. Don’t like soy? Try tofu, soymilk, soy nuts, edamame,
Popeye was on to something! Spinach lowers the risk of cardiovascular diseases, a
variety of cancers, age-related macular degeneration, and cataracts.
–Eat 1 cup of steamed spinach or 2 cups of raw spinach a day. Don’t like it? Then
eat kale, collards, Swiss chard, bok choy, romaine lettuce, mustard, or turnip greens.
Tea (Black or green)
Besides soothing the soul, tea boosts the immune system, helps prevent cancer and
osteoporosis, lowers stroke risk, and promotes cardiovascular health.
–Drink at least one cup a day.
They lower cancer risk, increase your skin’s sun-protection factor, and play a role
in preventing cataracts and age-related macular degeneration.
–Eat one tomato a day. Don’t like them? Try watermelon, persimmons, or pink grapefruit
Turkey (skinless breast)
It’s not just for Thanksgiving. Turkey is not only the perfect healthy low-fat protein,
but also builds a strong immune system.
–Eat three or four 3-ounce servings a week. Want something else? Skinless chicken
breast is a great alternative.
How nutty is this? Walnuts reduce the risk of heart disease, diabetes, and cancer.
–Eat 1 ounce five times a week. Other options include almonds, pistachios, sesame
seeds, peanuts, pumpkin and sunflower seeds, macadamia nuts, pecans, hazelnuts, and
It lowers risk of heart disease and cancer.
–Eat it two to four times a week. Don’t like salmon? Go for Alaskan halibut, canned
albacore tuna, sardines, herring, trout, sea bass, or clams.
In addition to being a great source of protein and calcium, yogurt promotes strong
bones and a healthy heart.
–Eat 2 cups a day. Want something else? Try kefir.