Whats So Super About Superfoods?

By Adrian Oaks / January 15, 2016

‎The term “superfoods” is a label used for certain foods that can promote health and resistance to certain diseases. Although it is a term used extensively in the health and wellness fields, it is not an actual scientific term. It was created in the early 90’s as a marketing term and has become so widely used that manufactures now slap the label on any supplement or food that can benefit your health in some way.

In the supplement industry, the term "superfood" usually refers to any green colored supplement containing 1 or more of these ingredients: kelp, spirulina, chlorella, and herbs/vegetables (usually berries and leafy green vegetables). In terms of whole foods, there are many types that can be beneficial to one’s health. Although the term "superfood" doesn’t necessarily refer to a specific type of food, for the purpose of simplicity this article will mostly examine fruits and vegetables.

This is due to the fact that adding significant amounts of fruits or vegetables to your diet will in most cases provide an immediate boost to energy levels and overall well being.

Some of the most popular superfoods are antioxidants like berries or fruits. Also, some vegetable superfoods contain anti-cancer compounds and may help the body detoxify itself of harmful heavy metals or even radiation. Other foods may help reduce the risk of heart disease or improve digestion. To get started, let’s look at some of the most common superfoods:


Fresh green kale .. Yummy.

Kale is a leafy green vegetable that comes from the same vegetable group as broccoli and collard greens. It is high in vitamin C, at over 43mg per 100g serving. It also contains the beneficial compound sulforaphane, which has been studied in many cancer trials due to its ability to kill tumor cells. Sulforaphane can also prevent the formation of cancer cells and help the body repair cellular damage. Additionally, kale contains resin compounds that help lower LDL levels and slightly improve digestion.

Sweet potatoes

Sweet Potatoes are an often overlooked superfood. They are one of the most common staple crops throughout the world due to their high nutritional value. Sweet potatoes are rich in micronutrients, with over 17 different vitamins and minerals. They are particularly rich in vitamin A and potassium. They are a great source of pantothenic acid, which is needed for metabolizing proteins and fats. Pantothenic acid is particularly beneficial to diabetics since it helps to heal and prevent ulcers. It is currently being studied for its effectiveness at treating diabetic neuropathy. Additionally, sweet potatoes also have no phytic acid, which is compound that is linked to tooth decay.


Berries are often touted as a a superfood rich in antioxidants. Berries are rich in micro nutrients and most have the added benefit of being a low glycemic load food. They are also widely consumed by those on a paloelithic diet due to the fact that consumption of berries dates back to the stone ages. Additionally, berries are very high in Vitamin C. Specifically; Camu Camu berries are one of the highest vitamin C containing foods on the planet. At around 1200% per 5g serving, you would be hard pressed to find a more vitamin C dense food.

Green Tea

Fresh Green Tea with Lemon in Transparent Cups, Healthy Detox Tea

Green Tea is a popular superfood although its many health benefits are hotly debated. There is some evidence that it can reduce cancer tumors. It has been shown to have a positive effect on LDL levels help by helping to promote fat burning enzymes. Chlorella is a nutrient packed algae that has a long list of health benefits. It has been shown to have some effect on Alzheimer’s disease due to its nerve repairing properties. Chlorella contains a compound called CGF, which has been studied for its immune system boosting properties. Chlorella is also a great supplement for those suffering from diabetes. It will help to control blood sugar levels by providing a steady stream of slow burning carbohydrates and plant proteins. Even in large amounts it will note spike insulin levels.


Chlorella is also a great superfood for detoxification. It contains a compound called mucopoly saccharide that binds with heavy metals and other toxins allowing a safe removal from the body. Chlorella has been utilized in cases of radiation poisoning for this effect. It is used in many detox programs for the high amount of chlorophyll it contains. Chlorophyll helps to cleanse the liver and kidneys, which in turn will improve your overall health because these are the main organs that eliminate harmful toxins in the body.

While all all these foods are great to eat on a regular basis, care should be taken not to over eat one specific food. This will result in a one sided diet that can cause in imbalance in the body over time. It is best to very your nutritional and supplement protocol month to month to see what works best for your particular metabolism. Remember Although there are many superfood supplements on the market today, it is best practice to follow a balanced diet that is rich in whole foods like fruits and vegetables. If you have to supplement, consider purchasing brands that are as unprocessed as possible. Additionally, many superfood supplements can contain additives or excess sugars. As always, take special care to read the ingredients before you decide on which brand to go with.