Let’s face it. Today’s diets are more focused on quantity than quality. This explains why conventional farming methods are embraced globally at a very fast pace.
Although farmers have learned to give consumers what they want (i.e. bigger fruits, vegetables and meats), this is happening at the expense of nutrition. Big doesn’t equate to more nutrients, which is why we all need exercise caution when deciding what to eat.
If you want to have meals that supply your body with adequate levels of vitamins, minerals, antioxidants and more, you need to know which foods to eat regularly.
And if your goal is to lose weight, these foods are especially important because they help your body burn fat.
Below are seven of the most nutritious foods in the world.
Out of all healthy leafy green vegetables, kale takes first place. According to numerous studies, there are no other leafy greens that can match kale in terms of vitamin, mineral, antioxidant and fiber content/composition.
This leafy green is also rich in bioactive compounds. For instance, 100 grams of kale contain 200 percent Vitamin C RDA, 300 percent Vitamin A RDA (from beta-carotene), 1000 percent Vitamin K1 RDA as well as large amounts of potassium, Vitamin B6, Magnesium, Manganese, calcium and copper.
Kale also has 2 grams of fiber and 3 grams of protein. In total, kale contains only 50 calories. No other vegetable in the world, including spinach, matches its nutrient calorie composition. In fact, kale is healthier than spinach given that it has less oxalates (substances which bind minerals i.e. calcium in the intestines preventing proper absorption).
The sea/ocean has plenty of plant species that are incredibly nutritious. Seaweed, or sea vegetables, is at the top of the list, which is undoubtedly more nutritious than most vegetables found on land.
Seaweed is rich in minerals like Iron, Magnesium, Calcium and Manganese. Seaweed is also packed with bioactive compounds like carotenoids and phycocyanins, which are antioxidants with very powerful anti-inflammatory activity.
It is, however, important to note that seaweed gets more credit as a super food due to its high iodine content. Iodine is a vital mineral in the body because of its role in making thyroid hormones. You can get adequate iodine by eating seaweed like kelp or taking iodine supplements.
Wild salmon is undoubtedly the most nutritious fish on the planet given that it is among the fatty fish types with the highest Omega-3 composition.
Considering Omega 3 fatty acids are vital for optimal bodily functions, salmon is undoubtedly one of the top super foods in the world.
This is not to mention the rich vitamin, mineral and high quality animal protein composition in salmon. A serving of 100 grams of wild salmon contains 2.8 grams of Omega 3s, high quality animal protein and vitamins and minerals, including Magnesium, Selenium, Potassium and all B-vitamins.
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When it comes to fruits, blueberries are in a league of their own. Although blueberries aren’t packed with minerals and vitamins like vegetables, they are rich in antioxidants (calorie for calorie) compared to citrus fruits like oranges and lemons.
Blueberries contain powerful antioxidants like anthocyanins. They also contain phytochemicals, which are capable of crossing the blood-brain barrier exerting protective effects on the brain.
Blueberries have a number of notable benefits. For instance, they promote brain health improving memory in the process. Blueberries have also been proven to lower blood pressure as well as reduce bad cholesterol levels. Studies also show that blueberries have cancer prevention and fighting benefits. Blueberries are undoubtedly one of the most nutritious fruits.
Dark chocolate can easily qualify as one of the top nutrient-dense snacks in the world. This is due to the high cocoa content.
Dark chocolate is also rich in fiber, Magnesium, Iron, Manganese and Copper. Dark chocolate, however, stands out the most for having plenty of antioxidants. In fact, dark chocolate has more antioxidants than acai berries and blueberries, according to numerous research studies.
Some of the most notable health benefits of dark chocolate include improved blood flow, lowered blood pressure, improved brain function and reduced oxidized LDL.
The liver is undoubtedly the most nutritious organ of animals including goats, sheep and cows, although most people eat animal muscle, such as steak, for protein.
Muscle meat has been proven to be nutritionally poor. The liver tops the list as the most nutritious source of animal protein given its rich mineral and vitamin composition.
Beef liver is packed with Vitamins B12, B6, B5, B2, A, Niacin and Folate, Copper, Phosphorous, Iron, Selenium and Zinc. A 100 gram amount of beef liver has 29 grams of high quality animal protein.
Garlic also deserves a spot in this list of the most nutrient dense foods. Garlic adds natural flavors on top of providing many vitamins, including Vitamins B1, B6 and C and minerals like Potassium, Calcium, Manganese, Copper and Selenium.
Garlic also contains a very important but scarce nutrient called Allicin. This nutrient has numerous health benefits with the most notable being its ability to lower blood pressure and bad cholesterol levels (LDL). It also raises good cholesterol levels (HDL), which in turn reduces heart disease risks. Allicin has also been proven to lower cancer risks.
So there you have it — seven of the most nutrient dense foods in the world. Although there are other super foods that weren’t mentioned, the foods in the list are proven to be the most nutritious in regards to calorie by calorie nutrient content.