In another article, we unveiled a few nutritional myths sold to us by both big companies and the wellness industry, in a bid to get us to fork over a fistful of cash in exchange for the promise of superior health in the form of exotic foods from even more exotic lands.
However, as we established, quality and nutritional value are not equivocal to expensive price tags wrapped up in fancy packaging (but, yeah we admit, we also have succumbed to attractive packaging). Here are our favorite five super affordable foods that will enrich your healthy eating lifestyle for a fraction of the cost — and best of all they are all right on your doorstep.
Our top 5 affordable alternatives to the best superfoods
1. Get your fix with flaxseeds in place of chia
Chia seeds are known for their high omega-3 fatty acid content, but it turns out flaxseeds are fractionally more nutritious and less expensive. Just be sure to grind your flaxseeds in a food processor or coffee grinder before eating them so that your body can better absorb all those marvelous nutrients.
2. Blend a blueberry bowl instead of açai
Blueberries and açai berries share similar antioxidant properties and nutrient profiles, so no need to go for the more expensive berry unless you prefer the taste.
3. Quit quinoa for lentils
Lentils contain approximately twice as much healthful fiber and protein as quinoa. Plus, with just 1/2 cup, you get 100% of the recommended daily intake of folate (essential for the development of red blood cells). Use lentils in your next salad, grain bowl or savory “oatmeal.”
4. Go for blackcurrant instead of goji berries
Goji berries are nutrient-dense, yet as they are dried, they are also more sugar-dense. Removing water from berries or fruits in the drying process allows the sugars to become more concentrated. Swap goji berries for fresh, low-sugar blackcurrants, which are also known for being vitamin C powerhouses.
5. Wheatgrass alternatives? Use spinach
There is little evidence to support that wheatgrass is superior to any other leafy greens. In fact, spinach has more iron, calcium and almost double the amount of chlorophyll. Mindblowing right?
So, now that we’ve answered the big question, “What is a superfood?” and weighed the cost vs. value, you’re well-equipped to navigate the smoke and mirrors of the aisles of your health food store. Take your time and source “super” nutrient-rich ingredients for our 8fit recipes without purchasing countless items off a list of superfoods.
To get you started, here are some yummy recipes that won’t leave a dent in your wallet. Our Peanut Butter Oats with Orange have flaxseeds and other ingredients we mentioned earlier. Our Meatballs with Blueberries are an absolute must-try; they’re delicious and only take 20 minutes. If you’re looking to transform your lentils and spinach, you’ll love our Spinach Dhal with Coconut Milk. You can find these and more in the 8fit app!