Top 7 Superfoods
After I was diagnosed with lupus, I started studying nutrition because our diet can directly affect the symptoms of an autoimmune disease. I learned more about inflammation and which foods can prevent it – or at least not make it worse – a lot of new and healthy recipes and some Ayurveda ancestral knowledge.
One article that gained my attention recently was Dr. Murray’s Top 7 Superfoods. He claims that one of the keys to eating a diet that promotes health and longevity is focusing on flavonoids, a type of plant pigment and a member of the larger polyphenol family. As a class of compounds, flavonoids are often called “nature’s biological response modifiers” because of their anti-inflammatory, antiallergic, antiviral, and anticancer properties.
Many superfoods owe their benefits to their flavonoid content. While different flavonoids have different effects on the body, the key factor may not be a high intake of any one particular flavonoid, but rather a high total flavonoid intake that also provides a wide variety of flavonoids rather than one specific flavonoid class.
The research shows that it does not seem to matter whether the flavonoids come from dietary sources or through supplements containing flavonoid-rich extracts. The caveat is that the dosage must be sufficient, and the total intake must come from various sources. Based upon his interpretation of all of this data, Dr. Murray believes that the total flavonoid intake for general health should be at least 500 mg from a wide variety of sources. Some of them are:
Dietary sources/ Daily dosage/ Flavonoid content:
Berries/ 1 cup/ 205 mg
Raw cacao powder/ 3 tablespoons/ 85 mg
Tea (green or herbal)/ 12 ounces/ 400 mg
Decaffeinated coffee/ 12 ounces/ 400 mg
Nuts/ 1/2 cup/ 85 mg
In general, smaller, more dense fruit will provide a higher content of flavonoids than larger, more woody fruit. For example, a smaller, denser blueberry or apple will have a higher content of flavonoids than a larger, higher water content blueberry or apple. The key is to try to hit that 500 mg per day target and remember that these foods have numerous other beneficial compounds besides flavonoids.
Other foods rich in flavonoids are:
Lemons, without peel
Oranges, all commercial types
Cabbage, red (raw)
Onions, red (raw)
Nuts and Seeds:
Cocoa powder, unsweetened
Chocolate, dark semisweet
Tea, black brewed
Tea, green brewed
Dr. Murray´s top 7 are:
Do you often eat them? I am adjusting my diet to do so. Let me know if you try it as well?! Good luck!