We talk about superfoods a lot—but what are they exactly? Let’s explore what makes certain foods so super, and how they can be great additions to your healthy routine. You may want to put some of the best superfoods onto your shopping list right away!
What are superfoods?
In general, superfoods are natural foods that not only deliver basic nutrition but also support certain health benefits. In a way, superfoods are “therapeutic” foods—they tend to be nutrient-dense PLUS they deliver additional wellness benefits. The common factor among superfoods is that they’re packed with one or more compounds known to support health. For example, the dark color of Elderberries indicates their high flavonoid content. Wild Alaskan Salmon contains Omega-3 fatty acids, and is also pigmented with Astaxanthin, a natural antioxidant. Kale and other dark leafy greens can be considered superfoods because of their antioxidants as well.
How do superfoods work?
Just as with any food, your body will digest, absorb, and use the available compounds in superfoods that you consume. Those superfood compounds can be grouped into categories that include adaptogens, nootropics, and general antioxidants. Each category has typical related health benefits. Antioxidants help support overall health, including protecting cells from free radical damage. (Free radical damage is caused when unstable atoms in the body “steal” electrons from cells, which literally tears them apart!) Adaptogens help the body to deal more quickly and easily with occasional stress. Nootropics are linked to brain benefits. Omega fatty acids, particularly Omega-3s (“good fats”) help to support heart health.
|Category||Health Benefits||Examples of Superfoods|
|Adaptogens||Help the body respond to the effects of occasional stress||Ashwagandha, Holy Basil, Reishi Mushroom|
|Antioxidants||Maintain overall health, Protect cells from oxidative damage||Elderberries, Dark Leafy Greens, Tomatoes, Green Tea|
|Nootropics||Support brain and cognitive function||Lion’s Mane Mushroom, Rhodiola rosea|
|Omega fatty acids||Support heart & cardiovascular health||Wild Alaskan Salmon, Olive Oil, Nuts|
How do you consume superfoods?
In some parts of the world, people eat superfoods every day as part of their normal diet! For example, people in the Mediterranean region (think Greece, Spain, and Italy), use a lot of olive oil and consume plenty of antioxidant-rich fruits and vegetables. The Mediterranean eating pattern has even been recommended by the American Heart Association for its ability to reduce risk factors for heart disease or stroke.
Similarly, the traditional diet of Japan incorporates superfoods like fish, green tea, mushrooms, and fermented foods like miso and natto (fermented soybeans).
In the US and Canada, however, the standard diet consists of a lot of processed foods and meats. One study found that processed foods comprise about 60% of total calories in the US diet! So our plates aren’t exactly stacked high with superfoods. Yes, you can make an extra effort to eat more plant-based meals and heart-healthy fish. There are also a few other ways to purposefully add superfood benefits to your routine. One great way is to seek out the best superfood beverages or best superfood capsules for you.
Plant-Based Superfood Powders
Superfood powders are often plant-based blends sold by the bag or jar. They’re often scooped and blended with liquid or fruit to mix up superfood shakes or smoothies. While these powders are popular, it’s not always easy or fast to prepare powdered superfoods. Also, sometimes they don’t taste very good.
Superfood Tea or Coffee
You can get some superfood benefits from a tea infusion, such as Tulsi Tea (Holy Basil leaves steeped in hot water). Some coffee and coffee alternative blends may have superfood mushrooms included, such as added Lion’s Mane mushroom for brain benefits. Again, this powdered form takes some preparation and the taste might not be something you want every day.
There’s another very easy way to get superfood benefits without any scooping, blending, shaking, or simmering. You can take superfoods in dietary supplement form—in a pill! Just swallow one or two capsules with a sip of water and you’re good to go. In fact, New Chapter® has been creating supplements with superfoods since our beginning in 1982. We’re now launching the perfect, convenient capsule form of superfoods that you can take anytime—no blender required.
How do I find the best superfood supplements?
The best superfood supplements are made with excellent quality ingredients and are formulated for your body to recognize and absorb well. You can look for third-party validations (such as Non-GMO Project Verified or made with certified organic ingredients). New Chapter’s concentrated herbal capsules and medicinal mushroom capsules make it super-simple to get your superfood boost in just 1-2 capsules a day. We use the highest quality ingredients from around the world that are sustainably sourced from where they grow best.
Turmeric (Curcuma longa) is a bright yellow spice native to Southeast Asia. It’s an important element of Indian cuisine and the Indian practice of Ayurveda. The part of the plant used is generally the rhizome, which is similar to a root.
What makes Turmeric a superfood?
Turmeric can be considered a superfood due to its active compounds, which include Curcumin as well as Turmerones. Curcumin has been researched for a number of human health benefits including supporting healthy inflammation response and having antioxidant action.*
What are benefits of Turmeric?
Turmeric is heart-healthy! New Chapter delivers a clinical-strength Turmeric extract to help maintain healthy cholesterol levels already in a normal range for overall cardiovascular support.*
What’s different about New Chapter’s superfood Turmeric supplement?
Our Concentrated Superfood Turmeric is made with two types of Turmeric extract to deliver potent compounds for your body to absorb, including both curcumin and turmerones. While some curcumin-only supplements include black pepper to support proper absorption, using both extracts supports natural absorption by the body. No black pepper is needed with our full spectrum approach!
Ashwagandha (Withania somnifera) is a key herb in the Ayurvedic healing tradition of India. Modern research on Ashwagandha is validating its effectiveness as one of the best organic superfoods you can find.
What makes Ashwagandha a superfood?
Ashwagandha is an adaptogenic herb, meaning that its chemical constituents help the body to adapt to the effects of occasional stress—both mental and physical.*
What are benefits of Ashwagandha?
Our clinical-strength, adaptogenic Ashwagandha helps ease both mental and physical stress, and has been shown to improve well-being and boost adrenal function.*
What’s different about New Chapter’s superfood Ashwagandha supplement?
New Chapter’s Concentrated Superfood Ashwagandha capsules are formulated with certified organic Ashwagandha leaf-and-root extract. We use a powerful 5x concentrated extract to support optimal benefits.
Sometimes called “Tulsi” or the “Queen of Herbs,” Holy Basil (Ocimum sanctum) is a type of basil with a rich history of use in India. It has been treasured in healing systems for thousands of years.
What makes Holy Basil a superfood?
Holy Basil is an herbal adaptogen that helps to optimize your systems and support your body’s positive response to stress.*
What are benefits of Holy Basil?
Turn to Holy Basil for its immune benefits. Our clinical-strength Holy Basil supports immune cells and multiple markers of healthy immune function.*
What’s different about New Chapter’s superfood Holy Basil supplement?
New Chapter’s Concentrated Superfood Holy Basil delivers two types of Holy Basil leaf extracts to provide a full spectrum of the plant’s valuable constituents for your benefit.
Ginger (Zingiber officinale) is from the same plant family as Turmeric. This spicy rhizome is beloved in India, China, and throughout Southeast Asia both for its taste and its health benefits.
What makes Ginger a superfood?
Ginger is packed with active compounds such as gingerols and shogaols that are believed to have strong antioxidant activity.
What are benefits of Ginger?
Lean on Ginger to help balance the body’s natural, healthy inflammation response, including muscle recovery after exercise.*†
What’s different about New Chapter’s superfood Ginger supplement?
The clinical-strength Ginger delivered in New Chapter’s Concentrated Superfood Ginger is a pure and potent formulation using dual extracts of the highest quality whole-herb Ginger. This includes supercritical Ginger that has been regeneratively farmed to help heal the soil and start to reverse climate change.
Reishi mushroom (Ganoderma lucidum) is a mainstay of traditional Chinese medicine. It is a revered tonic that can be taken long-term to support balance.
What makes Reishi a superfood?
Reishi is considered an adaptogen, meaning it can be used to help the body to deal with the effects of stress.
What are benefits of Reishi mushroom?
Experience healthy aging with our Reishi mushroom supplement to support vitality, longevity, and overall wellness.* Superfood Mushroom Reishi delivers the benefits of this traditionally revered and extensively researched mushroom in 100% vegan capsules.
What’s different about New Chapter’s superfood Reishi supplement?
Our superfood Reishi mushroom supplement features 100% USA-grown mushrooms that are allowed to grow for up to 90 days to deliver their full spectrum of compounds. They’re harvested at peak ripeness so you get all the goodness of pure Reishi. Delivering compounds from the mushroom’s whole life cycle—mycelium and fruiting bodies—works together to support your vitality.* We also verify mushroom identity at the DNA level to ensure that you’re getting the exact strain you expect.
Lion’s Mane Mushroom
Lion’s Mane mushroom (Hericium erinaceus) is a fascinating pale white fungus that has an icicle-like appearance and tastes slightly of seafood.
What makes Lion’s Mane a superfood?
Lion’s Mane can be classified as a nootropic. Lion’s Mane can be used for brain and cognitive support.
What are benefits of Lion’s Mane mushroom?
Our nootropic mushroom blend with Lion’s Mane supports mental clarity, cognition, focus, and normal brain function.* It’s a great supplement to help you stay sharp for study, work, or play!
What’s different about New Chapter’s superfood Lion’s Mane supplement?
Just as with our Reishi supplement, New Chapter’s superfood Lion’s Mane mushroom supplement features 100% USA-grown mushrooms that are allowed to grow for up to 90 days and harvested right at peak ripeness. This delivers their full spectrum of compounds that can work together to support brain benefits.*
Feel the Difference
Today’s the day to up your superfood game! New Chapter’s convenient superfood supplements are specially formulated to deliver big superfood benefits in small, convenient capsule form. No need for scooping and prepping bulky powders in shakes or recipes. Our easy-to-use superfood capsules are the super-simple way to get a boost in just minutes a day, delivering highly concentrated herbs and full-spectrum mushrooms. It’s all part of something we call wellness, well done.
Learn more about the benefits of herbs in our blog post The Top 9 Herbal Supplements for Overall Health
Shop now for New Chapter’s pioneering Superfood Supplements.
† For healthy inflammation response after exercise