Simply put, superfoods are those foods that are nutritionally superlative because they pack huge amounts of important nutrients such as antioxidants, vitamins and minerals that are key to physical and mental health. Superfoods can fall into many different categories including fruits, vegetables, fish, grains, nuts and even in the best nutrition bars. By reaching for superfoods such as blueberries, salmon and nutritious snack bars, such as Santa Barbara Bars that contain ingredients like oats and chia seeds, you can help boost everything from bone and heart health to concentration and memory. With that in mind, here are ten key superfoods to incorporate into your diet today!
Sweet and tart, cherries are one of summer’s most flavorful fruits. Cherry lovers can rejoice, then, knowing that they are also a superfood. Michigan State University researchers have discovered that the powerful anthocyanins found in cherries can help lower cholesterol, reduce insulin production, and keep blood sugar in check. In short, cherries make a wonderful and nutritious snack on their own or mixed with peanuts and chocolate like in the Peanut Chocolate Cherry Santa Barbara Bar!
Easy to snack on and wonderful in salads and cookies alike, walnuts also help improve important brain functions. Thanks to their high amounts of alpha-linolenic acid, walnuts can aid in blood flow to the brain, increasing oxygen levels and boosting memory, coordination and learning.
Surprisingly, even foods that are often thought of as sweet treats can fall into the category of superfoods. Dark chocolate is incredibly rich in antioxidants, particularly those known as flavonoids that can help increase blood flow and lower blood pressure. The caffeine in dark chocolate can also help improve mental sharpness and focus. Eaten alone or as part of some of the best tasting energy bars, dark chocolate is a delicious way bring a superfood into your diet. Next time you are craving a dark chocolate treat, reach for the Dark Chocolate Almond Santa Barbara Bar for a superfood boost!
These little seeds pack tremendous health benefits. Just a quarter of a cup of sunflower seeds can provide half of your daily requirement of vitamin E, an important nutrient to help promote heart health and fight infection.
Many people know that getting enough fiber is important, but the key is getting the right type of fiber. Oats are a source of a special kind of fiber which can help lower your cholesterol and reduce your risk of heart disease. Did you know that Santa Barbara Bar’s contain gluten-free oats? Well, now that you do know, what are you waiting for? Grab a bar today!
Omega-3 fatty acids are well known to be an important part of a healthy diet thanks to their ability to improve heart health and reduce the risk of stroke and heart attack. While fish such as salmon contain this important nutrient, so does seaweed. In addition, seaweed boasts significant amounts of magnesium and calcium that can promote healthy bones as well as other key vitamins such as zinc, iodine, iron and potassium. Whether eaten alone as a snack or as part of a flavor-packed sushi roll, seaweed is an excellent choice for a wide range of benefits.
Beans of all kinds are excellent sources of protein without the unhealthy saturated fat found in red meat. What’s more, black beans also contain loads of antioxidants, fiber and iron; the fiber in black beans can help promote heart health, while its iron content provides a boost of healthy energy.
Blueberries are practically the poster child of superfoods. These sweet little berries are filled with phytonutrients that help rein in free radicals, harmful agents that can increase cell damage and aging. The antioxidants in blueberries have also been shown to help guard against cancer as well as reducing the devastating effects of conditions such as dementia and Alzheimer’s disease.
A wonderful addition to your morning smoothie and found in the best nutrition bars (aka Santa Barbara Bars!) chia seeds are full of a number of key nutrients including fiber, calcium and omega-3 fatty acids. Chia seeds have a mild nutty flavor and a satisfying crunch, making them an easy addition to any diet.
Tomatoes can easily be incorporated into a wide variety of dishes, from fresh pasta sauces to satisfying sandwiches. This versatility is mirrored in the incredible range of nutrients that tomatoes provide, including fiber, vitamin C and potassium. In particular, tomatoes are rich in lycopene, an uncommonly found antioxidant that can lower cholesterol, help prevent some cancers, and boost the skin’s protection against UV rays.
Cuisines around the world rely on garlic for the flavorful punch it adds to any number of dishes. It turns out that this key ingredient can help boost brain health as much as it can help add flavor. Researchers have found that garlic’s organo-sulfur compounds can kill malignant brain tumor cells.
Avocado is an extremely trendy ingredient right now, commonly found in sandwiches and salads. Avocado offers more than just delicious flavor, however. The healthy monounsaturated fats found in this fruit help promote the absorption of other key nutrients as well as providing an important boost to blood flow and vascular health.
Whichever superfoods you prefer, making sure that your diet is rich in a variety of these nutrient-dense foods can help boost your physical and mental health and maximize your overall nutrition. Incorporating natural nutrition bars, like our Santa Barbara Bars, into your everyday diet is an excellent way to maximize your superfood intake, and with the Santa Barbara Bar’s delicious range of nutritious bars in flavors such as Mango Lemon and Coconut Almond, the task is simple! As we like to say, “finally-nutritious tastes great!” For more information about our bars, please call us at 855-722-2701 today!