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Spring has arrived, which means the temperatures are going to get warmer, you will spend more time outdoors, and you will likely revisit the healthy resolutions you made at the beginning of the year.
For many people, Spring feels like a fresh start, similar to the beginning of the year. You might eat better, become more active, and make new goals for the year.
If this sounds like you, and you want to improve your health and diet, superfoods are one great way to do that.
What are Superfoods?
These types of foods are higher in nutrients than the average type of food. They include a combination of fruits, vegetables, nuts and seeds, even grains and meat. Each of the superfoods will have lots of vitamins and minerals you need to have a healthy, balanced diet.
Here are ones that are recommended in the springtime, not only because they are available this time of year, but it is easy to add them to foods you tend to enjoy when the weather is warmer.
Keep reading to learn about the top 12 superfoods for the Springtime.
1. Lettuce, the Greener the Better
Naturally, vegetables are going to be high on the list. There are a lot of superfood vegetables, based on the nutrients they contain per serving, and your leafy greens are always going to top superfood lists. We will discuss specific type of leafy greens later, but for now, just try to get in more lettuce.
Choose any type of lettuce you like, as most of them have a good amount of vitamins and minerals, are easy to get, inexpensive, and simple to add to meals.
It is better to go with darker leafy greens like spinach and kale, but if you want some romaine, go for it!
Tip for Using Lettuce: If you want to add more lettuce to your diet, try to fit it in meals you already enjoy. Have a side salad with your spaghetti dinner, or sneak in some lettuce with your soup.
Nuts and seeds are also very good for you, and frequently at the top of healthy food lists and superfood lists. You will be able to find them year-round, but during the spring you often enjoy salads and lighter meals, which is when walnuts really make the meals extra special.
Walnuts contain many important nutrients your body wants and needs, especially providing fiber, protein, and amino acids. These amino acids can actually boost your mood, so if you are looking to de-stress and just be happier in general this Spring, add some walnuts to your diet.
Top Food with Walnuts: The great thing about walnuts is that they are simple to add to meals and snacks. Here are some ways to have more walnuts:
Top your salad with walnuts
Crush them and coat salmon or chicken
Have walnuts with cheese or fruit as a snack
Give your oatmeal or cereal an extra crunch
Another vegetable that is not only low in fat and really good for you, but is also a superfood, is artichoke. This is perfect to have during the spring, as this is when many places have it fresh in the produce section. It is always good to get food in season to help save money and have the best flavor with your produce.
This fun little green vegetable is packed full of vitamins and minerals, which is why it is considered a superfood. It has a lot of magnesium, vitamin C, and potassium. It doesn’t have any fat and is extremely low in calories. It is also loaded in antioxidants.
4. Wild Salmon
Moving on from fruits and vegetables is salmon. If you have ever read about foods that are good for you, then this should come as no surprise to you.
Salmon is one of the healthiest types of fish you can eat, being rich in omega-3 fatty acids, providing excellent protein, and other nutrients to boot.
Salmon can help lower your cholesterol, improve your skin, keep you full between meals, and even help reduce your risk for a heart attack or stroke. It is also great for reducing inflammation in your body.
Unique Benefit of Salmon
Another great reason to choose salmon? It is easy to cook! In just a few minutes, you can grill it, cook it on the stove, or put it in the oven. It goes with just about any vegetable you can think of.
Back to the vegetables, and it is time to talk about asparagus. While this vegetable has a lot of important nutrients, which is what makes it a good superfood for the spring, it is the folate that puts it at the top of the list.
Folate is a type of B vitamin that is wonderful for your brain health. It can affect your energy level, help improve your mood, and get you out of a mental or emotional funk.
If you want to try asparagus, aim for about a cup of it per serving. It is super low in fat and calories, so no need to worry about that. It will fill you up, which is perfect if you’re on a diet.
A cup of asparagus contains about 268 micrograms of folate.
As we mentioned in the first section, lettuce and all leafy greens are important superfoods to have year-round, but spinach is so healthy and good for you, it deserves its own honorable mention.
Spinach is one of the most nutrient-dense leafy greens you can eat. It is loaded with vitamins and minerals, particularly folate (as we mentioned is a B vitamin) and vitamin C. If you don’t get much vitamin C because you don’t like citrus fruits, spinach is an excellent alternative.
Spinach also contains other nutrients your body needs, including betaine, lutein, and phytochemicals. It is one of the best superfoods you can eat in the spring.
Adding More Spinach to Your Diet
This happens to be the perfect time of year to eat more spinach. Here are some ways to add more of it to your diet:
Make a fruit smoothie and add spinach to it.
Have a large spinach salad for lunch or dinner.
Put your protein, like fish or chicken, on a bed of sautéed spinach.
If you want a little more protein in your diet, legumes are a fantastic source. These are also on the list of the best superfoods for Spring. Legumes have fiber, protein, and other nutrients that are going to improve your digestion and help you lose weight.
Benefits of Eating More Legumes
You can have them on a vegetarian or vegan diet.
They are easy to add to soup, chili, and other hot foods.
You can eat them on cold or hot salads.
They provide a high amount of fiber for better digestion.
As far as fruits go, strawberries are among the best fruits to consume. They have a lot of antioxidants, similar to other berries, and are loaded with vitamin C as well. These nutrients together are wonderful for your skin, helping to protect it from environmental factors, reducing the signs of aging, and improving your complexion naturally.
Low-Carb Bonus: If you are on a low-carb diet, such as Atkins or Keto, then you can still have strawberries! They are one of the only fruits you can have that is low in sugar and carbs, so here is another great bonus for these delicious berries.
There is another berry that provides many of the same nutrients, which are blueberries. These are even higher than strawberries and most other superfoods with antioxidants. Blueberries are delicious, low in fat, and easy to find in the spring and summer months.
With blueberries, you are not only getting antioxidants, but vitamin C and potassium. This superfood can help reduce your risk of cancer, is good for heart health, and provides nutrients important for general health and wellness.
Adding More Blueberries to Your Diet
Make infused water with blueberries and mint.
Try blueberries on your spring or summer salads.
Enjoy blueberries on oatmeal, cereal, or frozen yogurt.
If you want vegetables that are a little different, you can try radishes. Radishes are a really fun vegetable that not many people think to try.
These are absolutely amazing for your digestive system, offering vitamin C, calcium, protein, and fiber for you. If you have digestive distress, try switching out your potatoes and complex or starchy carbs with radishes, and you will enjoy the difference.
Raw or Cooked?
The good news is that unlike other vegetables, you can enjoy radishes raw. Slicing them super thin makes it easy to top salads or even soup with the radishes. Of course, you can also cook them up like “fried” and enjoy them many other ways as well.
Are you looking for something new to try? If so, why not arugula. This is a superfood that si available during the spring season and will add important vitamins and minerals to your meals.
Not only is it loaded with nutrients like magnesium, but it also has a peppery taste that can really spice up your foods.
You can make a mixed green salad with arugula and spinach, or have a pesto that uses arugula with herbs you have in your own spring garden.
The last superfood on the list is oats. While a lot of fresh produce is great to have in your diet, sometimes you just want something warm and hearty.
A bowl of oatmeal is nutritious and often considered a comfort food, so it is good during the spring and year-round. In the spring, it tastes amazing with fresh fruits on top.
Oats are good for your brain thanks to the nutrients that help produce serotonin. It is also high in soluble fibers like beta-glucan.
The spring season is the perfect time to switch things up in your diet, ensure you are getting adequate nutrition, and try some of these superfoods.