Not-so-super Superfoods

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We admit it, we throw around the term ‘superfood’ as carelessly as the next person. We too get caught up in the ‘buzz’ and the ‘hype’ that surrounds particularly ingredients.

But after a bit of digging it’s come to our attention that many of our favourite ‘superfoods’ are not only less than super, they can actually be filed in the unhealthy or at the very least nutritionally-void category.

Here are 4 superfoods to think twice about next time you see them on the menu.

1. WHEATGRASS

Remember when everyone was throwing back wheatgrass shots like they were the miraculous cure-all? Well it turns out that wheatgrass really ain’t that spesh. Sure it contains chlorophyll, and host of vitamins and minerals, but the truth of the matter is that the nutrient composition of wheatgrass is similar to that of most green vegetables.

In fact a single floret of broccoli or 1 tablespoon of spinach contains more folate and vitamin C than 1 shot of wheatgrass (and tastes far less offensive).

2. AÇAI BERRY

The acai berry has definitely received a lot of attention over the years as the magical fruit that assists weight loss, maintains youth and prevents cancer. Native to the forests in Central and South America açai is undoubtedly full of antioxidants, amino acids, trace minerals, fiber and flavonoids, but at the end of the day there is no evidence that says it’s any more super than other berries like blueberries and raspberries.

If you wish to enjoy the benefits of açai, we recommend using the freeze dried açai powders which should contain 100% açai berry and adding them to your smoothies… Or just throw in a handful of frozen blueberries instead.

What might come as particularly shocking is that the way it’s been served in health food cafes not only negates the health benefits that it does have, but makes it one of the unhealthier options on a breakfast menu. The buckets of frozen açai that many cafe’s use to make their ace bowls is not just frozen açai berries, it also contains high amounts of sugar and thickeners.

They then mix it usually with a fruit juice of some description (which is also high in sugar) and then serve it with 2-3 extra serves of fruit on top. All up you’re looking at roughly 15 teaspoons of sugar per açai bowl.

That’s more than a can of Coke!

WHAT ARE SOME OF YOUR FAVOURITE SUPERFOODS?

DO THEY REALLY STACK UP?

3. COCONUT WATER

Now we have to get specific here! Coconut water should not be written off altogether, but unless you’re chugging back the fresh variety, the packaged stuff just ain’t gonna cut it. The pasteurisation process kills off any health benefits…

4. AGAVE NECTAR

So, it’s not officially a superfood but it’s definitely been falsely labelled as a ‘healthy’ sugar alternative. Not only are these claims misleading, they’re a dangerous lie.

First of all it is highly processed, so any health benefits that it may have had in it’s original state have been killed off.Secondly it is dangerously high in fructose, which is the sugar that overloads the liver, increases LDL particles, causes belly fat accumulation and raises the risk of metabolic syndrome and type 2 diabetes.

But here’s the clincher: regular table sugar contains 50% fructose, where agave nectar contains a whopping 85% fructose so it’s actually worse for you than regular sugar… and that is saying something!

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