Here at Yinova, we have been singing the praises of goji berries, wheatgrass, and maca powder. However, any food that is high in antioxidants and phytonutrients could be called a superfood and, bearing this in mind, I thought it might be useful to look at a couple of everyday foods that pack a nutritional punch. In our book Making Babies: A Proven 3-Month Program for Maximum Fertility there is a chapter called Eating to Conceive in which Dr. David and I discuss the best foods to eat when trying to get pregnant. In it, we mention both of the superfoods below for their high nutrient value.
Cruciferous vegetables, such as broccoli, can help your body process excess estrogen and therefore promote hormone balance. For this reason, broccoli has long been acknowledged for its ability to protect people from breast cancer but, in fact, broccoli’s anti-cancer properties are more far-reaching than that. In clinical research, scientists have found that just 1/2 cup of broccoli a day can protect you from a number of cancers, particularly cancers of the breast, lung, stomach, colon, and rectum.
But the good news doesn’t stop there. Broccoli may be a superfood because of its cancer-fighting benefits, but it is also rich in folate which is essential to preventing birth defects. Broccoli can also prevent cataracts because of its high level of antioxidants which means that people that eat broccoli more than twice a week have a 23 percent lower risk of cataracts. Broccoli’s combination of calcium, potassium, manganese, and vitamin K means that it is also a superfood for your bones too, reducing the risk of fractures, particularly as we age. And as if that isn’t enough to convince anyone that broccoli is something of a miracle food a regular helping can also boost immunity and reduce high blood pressure.
At the Yinova Center, we like our broccoli steamed with a spritz of lemon juice, blanched and chopped into a salad or baked with olive oil and some chopped garlic. We’d love to hear your favorite broccoli recipes.
Blueberries are so high in vitamins C & E as well as other phytonutrients that they are considered to be one of the most anti-oxidant rich fruits available. They boost your immune system and improve cardiovascular health. Their deep bluish-purple color comes from anthocyanins, a phytochemical that makes blood platelets less likely to stick together and form the type of clots that can cause heart attacks. They also contain a compound, known as pterostilbene, which lowers cholesterol.
At the Yinova Center, we like them in our whole-grain pancakes, blended into a smoothie, and baked into muffins. You can also use them on your skin as a wonderful wrinkle-fighting face pack. Simply spritz 1/2 a cup of yogurt with a handful of blueberries in a blender and apply to your face, avoiding your eyes, for 20 minutes before removing with warm water.