Are these exotic superfoods really that super? Their ecological footprint is rather less so. But there are many regional alternatives that put many a well-travelled variety in the shade. In the first part of our series, find out which of them will accompany you through spring.
Superfoods are foods that contain many antioxidants. These are molecules that protect our body cells from harmful free radicals. Too many free radicals can trigger oxidative stress, which causes cell damage. Many of them are also said to have other health benefits - from supporting your digestion to improving your concentration. So superfoods can be a great addition to a varied diet.
Is spring fatigue just a myth?
The first plants are blooming, it's slowly getting warmer and the days are getting longer. An unmistakable sign of the beginning of spring. But many know it: At the beginning of the new season, leaden tiredness comes along - spring tiredness. And it's not a myth at all! Researchers found that when the dark season changes into summer, the body needs about two to four weeks to get used to the fact that it needs more vitamin D (in the form of serotonin happiness hormones) and correspondingly less of the sleep hormone melatonin receives. This spring tiredness can lead to insomnia, lethargy, headaches and circulatory problems. The good news: as soon as your “internal clock” is adjusted again, spring fatigue should subside. But you can also support your body: The more active you are, the faster you can leave springtime fatigue behind. That means: get some sun whenever you have the chance. Fresh fruit and vegetables support the metabolic processes and make sure to drink enough to prevent fatigue and concentration problems.
Both can support you and your health:
Originally from the Mediterranean region, broccoli is also increasingly grown in Germany, France, the Netherlands or privately: Broccoli thrives well in poor soil and cool climates, but prefers a sunny location. The green all-rounder is harvested directly from the field in the spring months. In contrast, turmeric needs a few degrees more to grow and is therefore planted in tropical areas such as India and Jamaica. So to get to our supermarkets, the tuberous plant takes a considerable journey.
Have an anti-inflammatory effect
Strengthen your immune system
Support you in preventing and fighting cancer cells
Can help prevent Alzheimer's and dementia
Matcha and dandelion have one thing in common: They both originally come from Asia. The former from Japan, the latter from western China. But while matcha only leaves its homeland for export, dandelions have headed further west over time. Whether as wild flowers in your garden, as a popular children's series or as a nutritious superfood - we have probably all had contact with dandelions in our everyday lives. In addition to its actual origin, matcha and dandelion also have many things in common when it comes to positively supporting your diet and health:
They strengthen your immune system
Have a positive effect on your heart health
Can help with spasmodic pain (e.g. also with endometriosis)
Slow down the decline in cognitive abilities and thereby the development of dementia
Alleviate gastrointestinal complaints and stimulate your digestion
Help against oxidative stress
Daily dosage - that's behind it
The main task of your diet is to supply your body with macronutrients (proteins, carbohydrates, fats) and vital substances such as vitamins, bulk and trace elements, amino acids, phytochemicals and enzymes. Everyone knows: without nutrients, the body quickly ceases to function. The guide values here are so-called daily doses for the essential nutrient supply, which, according to the current state of scientific knowledge, are considered sufficient to cover the daily needs of an average healthy person. It would be easy, of course: A can of spinach and off you go. Unfortunately, the Popeye effect is just a myth. It's always important to know that the recommended daily dosage works both ways: minimum and maximum. With some active ingredients such as vitamin C or iron, an overdose can lead to unwanted side effects - from gastrointestinal to more serious liver or heart problems. Therefore, make sure that the nutrients in your diet are balanced – neither too much nor too little.
The first cherries are picked at the end of May. And that mainly in Central European countries, including Italy, Spain and Poland. But Germany, with almost 8000 hectares, is also one of the cherry-growing countries whose fruits are just waiting to share their strengths with you. In comparison, waiting for Moringa from India and some African and Arabic countries sounds less exciting. Choosing cherries or moringa brings you many advantages:
Accelerate skin regeneration
Improvement of blood sugar levels
Strengthening of your cardiovascular system
In addition to the regional aspect compared to Moringa, eating cherries and the melatonin they contain can have a positive effect on your sleep. In addition, cherries can help lower your blood pressure.
Healthy does not always have to mean exotic. On the contrary, the regional alternatives sometimes do not just have significantly more power, but are also significantly cheaper to buy. This is not only good for our wallets, but also for our ecological footprint. Broccoli, dandelions, and cherries are great additions to a balanced diet to keep you energised. Last but not least, the right (superfood) diet can help and counteract existing spring fatigue. It doesn't matter whether the sunshine is already enticing you out or the changeable April weather is making you stay at home - thanks to regional superfood you will always find regional, healthy alternatives to the popular superfood - for health and soul.
Want to learn more about local superfoods?
Then take a look here to find out which alternatives you can rely on in summer.