Top 5 ‘Superfoods’ You’re Probably Not Eating

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PLANO (CBS 11 NEWS) – Instead of focusing on what you shouldn’t be eating, Angela Lemond, RDN with the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics said a healthy diet should be focused on what you should be eating.

“There are some amazing foods out there that I think people are just not taking advantage of,” she explained.

With Lemond’s help, we came up with our Top 5 superfoods you’re probably not eating.

Pumpkin Seeds – These seeds help stabilize blood pressure and build bone strength.  Plus, compared to almonds, pumpkin seeds have fewer calories, fewer carbohydrates, and more protein.

Bok Choy – This often overlooked vegetable, also known as white cabbage, is loaded with vitamins A, D, and C.   Eaten raw or thrown in a stir fry, Bok Choy is a negative calorie food.  This means it takes more calories to digest it than the food contains.

Sardines – These tiny fish have more heart healthy omega-three fatty acids than salmon or tuna and sardines are lower in mercury.

Wild Blueberries – Blueberries are packed with antioxidants and vitamins, but contrary to what you might think; health experts say the fresh ones in the produce section are not the healthiest.  Available only frozen in most parts of the country, wild blueberries, compared to regular blueberries, have twice the anti-cancer properties and twice the fiber.

Millet – It’s not just ‘for the birds’.  Millet, a main ingredient in bird food, has been a food staple in Africa and Asia for thousands of years but is not nearly as popular in the United States.  The versatile grain can be substituted for rice or even popped like popcorn. Millet is great for muscle building and removes toxins from the livers.  Plus, it’s gluten-free.

Five Extra Superfoods:

Canned Pumpkin – While extremely high in fiber and low in calories, what raises canned pumpkin to a superfood level is its rich supply carotenoids. The two carotenoids found in canned pumpkin, beta- and alpha, have been linked to numerous disease-fighting activities – including decreasing the risk of several cancers.

Beets – Just one cup of cooked beets contains about 60 calories while supplying enough nutrients to boost energy levels and lower blood pressure. Research suggests beets can also reduce pain associated with arthritis and even lead to weight loss.

Swiss chard – Easily substituted or added to spinach or kale, Swiss chard gains superfood status for being a brain food.  High in vitamin B, studies suggest Swiss chard is helpful in fighting Alzheimer’s by decreasing the risk of cognitive decline.  The leafy vegetable is also high in folate and vitamin E.

Pomegranate juice – The fruit juice contains three times the antioxidants of red wine and green tea.  Studies have shown the juice can help prevent the build-up of fatty deposits around arteries which in turn prevents heart disease.  Dietitians, however; say make sure you buying 100% pomegranate juice and not a juice with added sugar.

Cinnamon – Some studies show cinnamon can help steady blood sugar levels and thus alleviate symptoms of diabetes; although; many health experts say more research is needed to support this claim. Other studies have found cinnamon can help with arthritis pain, fight oral bacteria, and even possibly help fight the flu.  With only 19 calories for an entire tablespoon, many dietitians say it’s worth sprinkling the spice on toast or putting it in your coffee.

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