Superfoods unmasked

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Superfoods are not magic bullets. The media love to label a constantly changing succession of fruits, vegetables, nuts and seeds as ‘super’, dazzling us with their powerful properties and nutritional jargon. We’re bombarded with messages like, ‘This one food will speed up weight loss!’ or ‘Eat more anthocyanins to prevent cancer!’ Claims like these can make nutrition a confusing game indeed.

But despite the impressive health benefits many plants provide, they won’t do anything for us in isolation. Eating processed foods everyday does not constitute a healthy diet if you sometimes snack on a handful of goji berries. Superfoods are not superheroes. They can’t rescue us if the rest of our intake is inadequate.

The unvarnished truth is that optimal nutrition is extremely complex and differs from person to person. If you eat a balanced diet containing a rich variety of fruits and vegetables, exercise regularly and limit your alcohol intake, you don’t need to obsess over the latest so-called superfood.

We prefer to think of ‘superplates’ rather than superfoods – so try and make sure every meal you have is bursting with nutrients.

At Balance Box, we pack up to 10 portions of fruit and vegetables into our client’s daily programme. And if we sneak in a few goji berries, it’s because we like the taste.