People have touted the powers of superfoods. Thought to benefit your overall well-being, these foods have been linked to a sharper mind, clearer skin, a healthier immune system, and more. And while many dietitians have questioned superfoods, there is no arguing that some fruits, vegetables, and proteins offer more health benefits than others.
So the next time you want to switch up your salad or try something new, consider stocking up on the best “superfoods” for your body. Whether it’s brain-boosting blueberries or cancer-fighting broccoli sprouts, these options aren’t just great for your health — they’re also delicious.
The importance of spices for nutritional benefits is also quite understated, as 2021 is about the return of traditional Indian spices such as cinnamon, saffron, turmeric and fennel seeds. Dr. Anju Sood says, “Cinnamon powder contains aldehyde which is a chemical compound that helps bring down blood sugar level and maintain metabolic levels.” Similar benefits can be stated for fennel seeds, also known as saunf, which contain antioxidants and can also help fight pollution. Turmeric too has a number of health benefits such as being anti-inflammatory and helping in boosting immunity.
2021 is all about the seeds – basil seeds, pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds are the superfoods this season. Rather than simply having Chia or Flaxseeds, use Basil seeds,” recommends Dr. Rupali Datta. These seeds can be had as a snack or included as a topping on any dish. The nutrients such as protein, fiber, iron, vitamins, and omega-3 present in all kinds of seeds promote healthy skin and hair and support cardiovascular well-being.
3| Whole Grains
There is a strong trend which sees an increasing return towards whole grains such as Kuttu, Ragi and Jau, our experts say. These whole grains can be easily used to replace sooji, besan, or even oats. The reason behind this is that they are rich in micronutrients such as zinc, magnesium and calcium. These are nutrients that the Indian diet traditionally does not have enough of, but can work miracles for overall health. Grains such as Rajgiri, aka Amaranth, as recommended by our nutritionists are also wonderful for their detoxifying and cholesterol-controlling properties.
4| Local Fruits
Dr. Rupali Datta emphasizes the need for inclusion of locally grown fruits in the diet, as much as vegetables. Fruits are one of the most underrated superfoods that have existed in the Indian diet since times immemorial. They are now slowly making a comeback this year due to their inherent nutritive properties. For instance, Guava actually has more Vitamin C content than, say, even an orange. “Seasonal fruits such as papaya can work wonders for the diet, ” says Dr. Datta.
5| Leafy Greens
Having local produce and hyperlocally sourced vegetables is something that cannot be emphasised enough in 2020. For instance, spinach is a leafy green that is packed with vitamins and minerals and contains anti-inflammatory properties and antioxidant flavanoids too. Spinach is great for maintaining overall bone and heart health. Macrobiotic Nutritionist and Health Practitioner Shilpa Arora ND suggests, “All the green leafy Saags cooked in ghee and a dollop of white butter loaded with vitamin K can be great for assimilation of vitamin D in the body.”
To conclude, superfoods for 2021 are all about going regional and rediscovering the roots. To quote Shilpa Arora ND, “Superfoods for 2021 have to be simple and not fashionable.”