Kale, avocado, coconut - these 'supers' are now store-cupboard staples. So what's up next? Take a look at the new superfoods you need to try...Never heard of maple water? New to bone broth? Well, that’s about to change thanks to these new superfoods. Health journalist and co-founder of Brighton Bone Broth Co Sarah Maber uncovers the latest nutrition trends...
Coconut flour was the baking ingredient of 2014, but it looks like the humble banana is about to steal its cookery crown. Made from green bananas, with a nutty flavour, it’s gluten-free and can be added to smoothies and salad dressings, as well as replacing traditional flour. You don’t have to use much, thanks to its highly absorbent properties, and it’s high in resistant starch, which mean it helps to protect against colon cancer and diabetes and controls blood-sugar levels.
Move over kombucha and kimchi – the latest elixir to join the ranks of the fermented superfoods is kefir. Rich in probiotics – the healthy bacteria that keep our digestive system well-oiled – kefir has a consistency that sits somewhere between milk and yoghurt, but excels at helping anyone with digestive issues, as it’s very low in lactose. It also packs in high levels of calcium and phosphorous. But it has a sharp taste – try it in fruit smoothies to be palatable.
Bone broth has been hailed as the forgotten superfood. It’s protein-rich and contains calcium, phosphorous, magnesium, sodium and potassium to help heal your digestive system and prevent insomnia, fatigue and anxiety. And that’s not to mention the collagen and gelatin, which boosts your skin, hair and nails. To make, simmer 3kgs of bones with a couple of handfuls of veg and herbs for six to 12 hours, skimming frequently. Or buy direct from Brighton Bone Broth Co.
The purest form of the sap that runs through maple trees, fans rave about its health-boosting properties. Containing antioxidants and minerals that can help control sugar levels and enhance thyroid function, it’s being billed as the new ‘wonder water’, but the scientific jury is still out – it’s so new that there is little research to support the claims. While we wait, enjoy this for what it is: a natural, sweet, hydrating drink that could well be doing you a lot of good.
Taking the idea of a ‘liquid diet’ to an all-new level, Soylent is a shake that claims to provide ‘all of the essential nutrients required to fuel the human body’, including proteins, fats, carbohydrates, vitamins, minerals and fibre.
But while the company’s founder Rob Rhinehart reckons that the drink is a ‘simple, healthy and affordable’ alternative to food - so much so that he claims it’s made up 90 per cent of his diet over the past two and a half years - experts disagree. ‘If Rhinehart indeed thinks that living off a processed shake is better than a fresh, natural, wholefood diet, then he is misguided,’ says nutritionist Kim Pearson. ‘It contains nearly four teaspoons of sugar, and the second-highest ingredient is sunflower oil, which is known to increase inflammation.’
But that doesn’t necessarily mean it’s all bad news. While Soylent is currently being targeted at desk-bound workaholics who don’t have a single second to pop out to M&S for their lunch, it could eventually be developed as a means of helping the victims of famine and natural disasters. And that has to be a good thing.