The most important part of any hiking or backpacking trip is to make sure that we have the right food to see the event out. Knowing what to take and why it’s beneficial for us can be such a help in the long-term.
What are Superfoods?
Although there’s no official standard or definition to go by that determined superfoods, it’s typically kept by for specific foods that are nutritionally dense and good for our health. They also give us an excellent resistance to chronic illnesses such as heart disease and even cancer, are loaded with antioxidants, and put us in a better mood. Getting into a habit of eating these superfoods can be incredibly beneficial to your long-term health and development.
Top 10 Superfoods
These are some of the most nutritious and enjoyable superfoods available to you. Each of them gives you some positive health benefits, and can be a great addition to your backpacking menu.
Blueberries are not only a great hiking snack. Rich in vitamins, minerals, fiber and antioxidants, they rank higher than the vast majority of natural foods on this planet. Blueberries can also help us feeling more active, fit and in a good mood, as they are very good antidepressants.
Beans are low in fat, rich in vitamins, minerals and fiber. After meat, poultry and fish, beans provide more protein per serving than other types of food. For hikers, especially vegans and vegetarians, protein-based plants as beans are the must. Our body uses protein to build and repair tissues, bones, muscles, skin, and blood.
Oats are a great source of energy. One cup of cooked oats can give us at least 147 calories. They are packed with dietary fiber, which makes them easy to digest and also leaves us feeling full and satisfied for hours. Oats are a rich source of the vitamin (B1), minerals (manganese, molybdenum, phosphorus, magnesium) and proteins for cell growth and repair. They also have anti-cancer properties and help boost metabolism and maintain good immunity.
Goji berries, also known as wolfberry, have been used in China and Tibet for centuries to treat some health problems like high blood pressure, diabetes and fever. They are a reach source of vitamins (C, A, B1, B2, B6, E), proteins, and trace minerals. Try them in cereal, oatmeal, or mixing with raw nuts and dark chocolate for homemade trail mix.
The most popular of all the superfoods out there, quinoa, is massively nutritious and is packed with fiber, and minerals. With eight grams of protein per cup (cooked), quinoa is an excellent plant-based protein source for vegetarians and vegans. Best of all, it’s totally gluten-free so you can get plenty of benefits from eating quinoa on a regular basis. It’s a pseudo-cereal, too, making it easy to enjoy and having a nice, easy texture to it while loading your body with everything you need.
6. Chia seeds
“Chia” is the ancient Mayan word for “strength.” The Aztecs prized them for their ability to provide sustainable energy. Chia seeds are packed full of important nutrients as omega-3 fatty acids, calcium, phosphorus, manganese and dietary fiber. One ounce (approximately two tablespoons) of chia seeds contains 137 calories, 9 grams of fat (5 of which are Omega-3s), 12 grams of carbohydrate and 4 grams of protein!
Chia seeds are relatively easy to incorporate into your diet. You can eat them raw or cooked. Sprinkle chia seeds on cereal, oatmeal or add them to baked goods.
These crunchy and slightly bitter nuts have innumerable health benefits. They are high in protein, vitamins, omega three fatty acids, trace minerals, lecithin, and oils. A diet rich in walnuts may help us deal better with stress.
The yummiest superfood loaded with nutrients that can positively affect your health. To get the most of them, stick to chocolate with at least 70% cacao.
Pumpkin is good not only for Jack-o’-lanterns on Halloween, it’s loaded with a lot of nutrients as beta-carotene, antioxidants and minerals that will help your heart, bones, eyes, and skin.
10. Seaweeds (nori, wakame, kombu)
Seaweeds are the best source of mineral elements (magnesium, iodine, calcium, iron) which are used effectively in our body. Nori, for example, contains more vitamins than fruits and vegetables. It is abundant in dietary fiber too.
All easily available and good for you, a superfood is an ideal choice for anyone who wants to start making their hikes little bit healthier than years gone by!
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