Ever heard of African super foods? If you’ve been doing your health research, you might just have!
There are many food which originate from Africa that are seen as healthy, and today we show you five of the most nutritious.
Dates Are An African Super Food
Dates are very popular in Northern parts of Africa. A date tree is able to grow in extremely hot climate which makes thrive in the hot Northern parts of Africa. Almost every oasis in the Kalahari desert has date trees. They contain a wide range of important nutrients including potassium, copper, magnesium, and copper which makes date fruits an important part of the diet in such hot areas. They also provide protein and fiber. Eating these small fruits reduces the risk of a stroke, prevents colon cancer, assists with weight loss and promotes digestive and respiratory health. Dates also contains iron thus preventing anemia.
Chickpeas, Delicious And Full Of Protein
These legumes have a huge fun base in Africa with Ethiopia being one of the major producer of chick peas in the world. Chickpeas are quite nutritious and contain a good amount of proteins. Their high fiber content makes you feel full fast thus automatically controlling the amount of calories you put in your body. They also lower the levels of bad cholesterol in the body thus reducing the risk of heart disease. Chickpeas are quite versatile and can be used in stews, curries, soups or even ground to flour. Its flour is gluten free and rich in protein.
Yams, Another Super Food From Africa
Yams are a staple food in most West African countries. It is usually boiled, pounded or dried in order to prepare various delicacies. In countries such as Nigeria, yams are pounded to make fufu, which is a common meal in most households. They give a healthy dose of starch which meets the nutritional needs of men, women and children in West Africa. The health benefits of yams are also many. They contain antioxidants which protect body cells from damage. Yams are also rich in potassium and vitamin C.
Amaranth Is A Great Source Of Vitamins
Amaranth consists of a group of short-lived plants which mainly grow as weeds. There are more than 50 species of amaranth. In most African countries, their leaves are used as vegetables. Since the plants are easy to grow and require little or no care and are drought resistant, they provide food security and improve nutrition in African countries. It’s a rich source of protein and fiber and even contains anti-inflammatory properties. The plants are also rich in minerals and vitamins including vitamins A, B5, B6, C, E, K, riboflavin, niacin, calcium, zinc, phosphorus, potassium, magnesium and copper. It’s easy to see why this family of plants is valued in Africa. Amaranth seeds are ground into gluten free flour which is used to prepare porridge especially for children. You can even use the seeds as a snack by popping them like popcorn. The abundance of minerals and vitamins boosts the immune system, prevents premature graying of hair and keeps the heart healthy.
Groundnuts, which are also known as peanuts, are common in many African countries. In East and West Africa, groundnuts are used to prepare various kinds of soup. They are a popular street snack when roasted and are usually sold in the streets wrapped in a cone shaped piece of newspaper. A 100 grams serving of groundnuts provides 570 calories, 25 grams protein, manganese, magnesium, phosphorus and vitamins B and E. It has also been suggested eating groundnuts or any other kind of nuts daily can reduce the risk of heart disease. Groundnuts are also known to improve fertility, boost memory, regulate blood sugar and even prevent gallstones. So, if you’re not allergic to groundnuts, ensure that they’re a part of your diet. You can even stock up on peanut butter to get more goodness from them.
5 African Superfoods Which’ll Improve Your Health
These foods are a great way to improve your health and decrease the amount of junk food you consume. Have you ever tried any of these foods? Share with us in the comment section below.