Self-care refers to the combination of healthy lifestyle choices you make, be it the food you eat, the exercise routine you follow, your responsible use of medication, or the self-recognition of symptoms and the treatment thereof.
In terms of making healthy lifestyle decisions, introducing certain ‘superfoods’ to your diet automatically promotes a healthier lifestyle and ultimately boosts your immune system.
‘Superfoods’ are nutritionally dense foods, which aid in building bones, warding off chronic diseases, improving eyesight, keeping the mind sharp, and even act as a slimming agent.
These foods are said to be rich in nutrients, healthy fat, fibre, and phytochemicals, the chemicals in plants responsible for deep colours and smells, which can have numerous health benefits.
The following everyday foods, stocked at most supermarkets, have been deemed ‘superfoods’:
1. Blueberries, which are rich in vitamins and soluble fibre, aren’t necessarily better than cranberries or raspberries, but are usually more readily available and are quite delicious as is.
2. Kiwifruit contains a wider range of nutrients compared to other fruits.
3. Beans are a source of insoluble fibre, which lowers cholesterol; soluble fibre, which provides a longer feeling of fullness; and loads of vitamins and minerals largely absent in the typical diet.
4. Nuts and seeds contain high levels of minerals and healthy fats but are high in calories. Shelled nuts and seeds are therefore ideal as they take time to crack open and will limit your intake.
5. Kale lives up to the hype of a ‘superfood’. Dark vegetables, such as kale, are loaded with vitamins A, C and K, as well as fibre, calcium and other minerals.
6. Sweet potato and squash are excellent sources of fibre and vitamin A. They are naturally sweet and don’t require the butter, cream, or salt typically added to these vegetables.
7. Salmon, sardines, mackerel and certain other fatty fish are rich in omega-3 fatty acids, which lowers the risk of heart disease and stroke.
Responsible food consumption decisions will leave you feeling more energetic and focused, allowing you to power through a busy day without hassle, and still have energy left over to enjoy some down time. Now that’s what we call responsible self-care!