women

Move over goji berries and take a back seat, quinoa, there’ s a host of new superfoods hitting the big time. Ellie Moss introduces the next generation of health superstars coming to a kitchen near you

With powers that range from fighting free radicals to stoking up your immune system, superfoods are an easy way to show your body some love. But if you thought berries and barley grass had this category all sewn up, you thought wrong – there’s a new wave of hero foods coming to the table.

From exotic fruits to a Japanese breakfast staple, the new kids on the superfood block will help boost your brain power, aid your weight loss, increase your nutrient intake and more. ‘Making sure you regularly eat a variety of superfoods may help to improve your health and wellbeing now and in the future,’ says nutritional therapist Stephanie Ridley (www.nourishtoflourish.co.uk). Ready to give your menu a super-healthy makeover? Tuck in…

Chia Seeds

Description: Chia Seeds

It’s said that the Aztec warriors used chia seeds as a source of energy, and with a whole range of nutrients – and a high fibre content – packed into this tiny grain, it’s the ideal food to see you through long days. Chia seeds contain complete proteins, which help to keep your energy levels high, while the fibre keeps you fuller for longer. The added bonus? Chia seeds contain more brain-boosting and cholesterol-easing omega-3 than salmon!

How To Use It

Sprinkle chia seeds over your porridge, salads and yoghurt or use them to thicken homemade soups.

Where To Find It

Chia Bia, US$19.5, Holland & Barrett

Black Garlic

Description: Black Garlic

This sweet and significantly less smelly version of regular garlic boasts twice the antioxid ants of the already potent original . It’s made by fermenting a standard garlic bulb over several weeks, which makes the amino acid s and sugars react to produce the black colour. It also has a softer texture , sweeter taste and doesn’t leave you with bad breath . Winning formula!

How To Use It

Exactly as you would normal garlic: in everything!

Where To Find It

$6, www.goodnessdirect.co.uk

Chikoo

Description: Chikoo

This fleshy, brown fruit is about the size of a large tomato and is rich in vitamins, minerals, antioxidants and dietary fibre. It’s native to South America and particularly high in the polyphenol tannin, which has potential anti-inflammatory and antibacterial effects. It also has a delicious caramel-like flavour.

How To Use It:

Wash, peel and deseed the fruit, then blend into smoothies or frozen yoghurt.

Where To Find It:

$4.4 for 500g, www.spicesofindia.co.uk

Natto

Description: Natto

Rich in vitamins and an enzyme called nattokinase, this Japanese breakfast staple is thought to help prevent heart disease and strokes. The fermented soya beans are high in protein and are also a great source of tummy-friendly probiotics. Rich in both types of vitamin K as well as omega-3 fatty acids, natto has the credentials to help boost skin health, bone density and brain power.

How To Use It

Natto has a strong cheesy flavour and a stringy consistency. It’s often served with soya sauce and mustard – eat it straight or with rice, spaghetti or omelettes.

Where To Find It

$3, www.japancentre.com

Cupuacu

Description: Cupuacu

This melon-like fruit is actually a relative of the cocoa family. Its high vitamin and flavonoid content, protected by its thick skin, can help to bolster the immune system. Cupuacu (pronounced koo-pwa-sue) also has an energy-boosting effect, but contains zero caffeine.

How To Use It:

The pulp of the fruit is usually made into ice cream, juice or jam.

Where To Find It:

$2.5, www.sublimefood.co.uk

Maqui Berry

Description: Maqui Berry

Watch out, acai, this is one super-powered berry! Hailing from Pata gonia, the maqui (pronounced ‘mah-kee’) berry has been used by the Mapuche people for its health benefits for years. It’s said to fight signs of ageing, aid weight loss and boost immunity. Maqui berries also have one of the highest scores on the ORAC (oxygen radical absorbance capacity) scale, which rate s the antioxid ant power of food.

How To Use It:

It’s most widely available in supplement form as capsules or as a powder.

Where To Find It:

Maqui Berry Powder, from US$18.7, www.buywhole foodsonline.co.uk

Baobab Fruit Powder

Description: Baobab Fruit Powder

The baobab fruit, from the African tree of the same name, contains six times as much vitamin C as an orange, twice as much calcium as milk and it’s packed with antioxidants. Woah! It has an exotic flavour, but it’s the tangy powder produced by the fruit naturally dehydrating in its shell that you’re most likely to find in your local health store.

How To Use It

Add the powder to smoothies, yoghurts and juice or add a little to cake and bread mixes.

Where To Find It

Minvita Baobab Superfruit Powder, US$22, www.minvita.co.uk

Kukicha Twig Tea

Description: Kukicha Twig Tea

This refreshing tea, made with the twigs (rather than leaves) of the camellia plant, has all the antioxidant goodness of green tea. However, it contains significantly less caffeine than your usual green brew, and about 90 per cent less caffeine than coffee, so it’s ideal if you’re trying to quit the habit. It also has a smokier flavour, which many people find more pleasant than bitter green tea.

How To Use It

Drink it as you would a regular herbal tea.

Where To Find It

$6.7, www.goodnessdirect.co.uk

 

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