healthiest foods
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The ‘final boss’ and the most nutritional of all the healthiest foods is in the spotlight, and it got us thinking: one of the simplest ways to show yourself love is eating nutritiously. Here’s what we mean.


Global (02 August, 2023) — You don’t need to live and die by the blender to know that some foods are a lot better for you than others. Then there are the foods that are even better than the best of the bunch (known as superfoods or powerhouse foods). But which is the healthiest food of all and why does it matter if you aren’t training for a marathon?

Determining the final boss of healthy foods has traditionally had mixed opinions because people find different foods healthier for them specifically. Some folks will sing the praises of protein sources while others tend to focus more on foods rich in vitamins and fats that feed your brain.

However, researchers eventually decided to pit the most nutritious foods against each other based on nutritional criteria to determine the pick of the bunch.

Superfoods and Powerhouses

Dr Jennifer Di Noia looked at foods “most strongly associated with reduced chronic disease risk,” described as Powerhouse fruits and veggies (PFVs). Her classification dug deeper to look at 17 nutrients (like Iron, Folate and Vitamin C) that are associated with public health importance.

“Of 47 foods studied, 41 satisfied the powerhouse criterion and were more nutrient-dense than were [non-powerhouse fruits and vegetables (PFVs),” the research shares.

Coming in hot as the final boss of healthy foods is watercress (sterkos or kerese in Afrikaans and Sesotho), scoring 100 points on the nutrient density score. This means that the research found watercress (which is in the cabbage and kale family) to be packed with vitamins and a hefty amount of antioxidants.

The research has been circulating in media cycles recently despite its publishing a few years ago in the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Still, it got us thinking.

One of the Simplest Acts of Self Love is Eating Nutritiously

Think of it like this: instead of having to consume and spend on lots of different food groups to get your nutrition locked in, you could just snack on or add a superfood to your plate because they equal (or outdo) the rest put together.

Integrating a mindset where you eat for nutritional purposes is one of the best ways to show some love and respect to your body. It’s not about diets or deficits, but rather a mindset where you give your body what it needs to do its job (taking care of you!) properly.

Diet culture has long neglected nutritional thinking. And, even though we’re living in an era where body positivism is more present than ever, the stains of diet fads still persist.

But loving yourself by taking care of yourself mentally and physically is one of the best ways to unlearn old cultural lessons. Good nutrition helps both your mind and your body, so why not let yourself be loved simply?

This also doesn’t mean you can only, solely enjoy foods that score highly on nutritional charts. Life is about balance, and healthy bodies look different everywhere!

In South Africa where food security is a big challenge, if you can access nutritional choices and add them to your plate without thinking twice, you absolutely should (just don’t forget to share with others if you can).

Sources: Various (Linked Above)
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About the Author

Ashleigh Nefdt is a writer for Good Things Guy.

Ashleigh's favourite stories have always seen the hidden hero (without the cape) come to the rescue. As a journalist, her labour of love is finding those everyday heroes and spotlighting their spark - especially those empowering women, social upliftment movers, sustainability shakers and creatives with hearts of gold. When she's not working on a story, she's dedicated to her canvas or appreciating Mother Nature.

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