28 Apr Autumn superfoods to ensure you perform at your highest
Yes, yes, we know we’re a business that specialises in financial fitness but we also believe that physical wellness plays a large part in being the best you can be! We all know that taking care of our bodies has as much to do with fuel as it has to do with fitness. Getting sufficient nutrients is a good way to make sure we’re ready for action during the winter months, and superfoods play an important role. But they needn’t be exotic to be efficient – these in season, delicious foods are extraordinarily ordinary, easy to find at this time of year and even easier to incorporate into our diets.
This little root vegetable adds vibrant colour to any dish, but it’s not just its bold ensemble that packs a punch. Apart from being a good source of fibre and iron, eating beetroot can also help to lower blood pressure, which scientists say may lead to a reduced risk of heart disease. One study showed that because of its high nitrate content, beetroot has the ability to reduce blood pressure and the risk of adverse cardiovascular events – presenting a potentially natural and low-cost treatment for cardiovascular disease. It’s also really tasty, goes great with duck, and you have the potential make more friends in the office by taking around this beetroot and chive dip (results of this particular study still pending).
In our (collective) opinion, despite their name, there’s nothing common about figs. Of all the superfoods that are available this time of year we defy any to taste as decadent. Add them to a sweet or savoury dish and it’s an instant taste upgrade, but what’s even better than their taste is that they contain antioxidants, minerals and soluble fibre. Their list of antioxidants contains vitamin A, vitamin E and K and of the minerals they’re rich in iron, copper, calcium, magnesium and potassium. And if that impressive list isn’t enough to persuade you to throw them into any salad from now until August, then dried, a study showed that the antioxidant quality of Vitamin C and E is even greater. Small but mighty. It’s how we like our superfoods. Try making this winter fruit salad for a delicious fig fix.
Eat them on their own or pair them with goat’s cheese, sprinkle them on green beans – they add a texture and a satisfying crunch that’s hard to beat. But how do walnuts measure on the superfood scale? Well, we’d say that on a scale of one to hard nut, they’re cracking. A recent study showed that incorporating a handful of nuts into a daily diet has the ability to lower bad cholesterol in older adults. They contain a healthy dose of vitamins and minerals, including vitamin B6, manganese, vitamin E, copper, folic acid, and phosphorus. And even though walnuts are high in fat, it’s the good kind, with evidence showing that incorporating walnuts into your diet does not equal weight gain when they replace other foods. These ultimate energy bites contain them, and are perfect for when you’re in need of a treat.
Some may argue that one of the nicest ways to wake up on a crisp morning is to a cup of hot water and a slice of lemon. Luckily, it’s pretty beneficial health-wise too. A quarter cup of lemon juice contains 31% of the daily recommended intake of vitamin C. And they’re versatile too. Enjoy a slice, squeeze or rind with a variety of sweet and savoury dishes and you’ll be enjoying a hearty injection of vitamin C.
Research has shown that eating a diet of fruits and vegetables high in vitamin C can have a positive effect against coronary heart disease. We’d say that lemons are a bona fide superfood because one wedge of lemon without its peel contains 3.7mg of vitamin C, as well as a whopping 10mg of Potassium K, which your body needs for your heart to remember to pump blood through your body. Pretty vital. We like the sound of this lemon potato and edamame salad as a nutritious dinner side dish.
So take autumn as the perfect opportunity to inject more of these modest superfoods into your diet. Your body will thank you for it!