Superfoods: The Healthiest Foods on the Planet


Praise for the first edition: “A solid beginner’s reference, especially for those seeking the authority of medical studies.” — Library Journal “Recommended.” — American Reference Books Annual 2010 Over 80 superfood entries updated with the latest health research discoveries. Since this comprehensive reference was first published, major studies have reinforced the importance and potential value of obtaining nutrients from foods rather than supplements. Many of the studies have discovered previously unknown health benefits of great significance, such as a reduced risk for dementia with the consumption of blueberries. In all, over 80 entries in this new edition have had their “Healthy Evidence” section updated to reflect the outcome of major reputable medical studies, including: Garlic supplements are beneficial for cirrhosis patients Cherries will lessen the frequency of gout attacks Soybean consumption is effective in lowering cholesterol Kale inhibits the growth of human colon cancer cells Studies have also confirmed that Chia seed is a superfood for its protective effects against heart disease. Superfoods is organized in broad categories: Vegetables; Mushrooms; Legumes; Fruits; Nuts and Oils; Herbs and Spices; Grains; Meat, Seafood, and Dairy; Beverages and Treats; and Nutritional Supplements. Each entry notes the food’s origin, its seasonal availability and nutritional values, tips on how to add it to an eating plan and how to optimize its nutrients and phytochemicals. Nutrient breakdowns are derived from the USDA’s Nutrient Database, and “The Healthy Evidence” refers to published peer-reviewed studies available from the US National Library of Medicine and National Institutes of Health database. The book closes with Nutritional Tables, a quick-reference guide to the nutritional content of the “superfoods” listed in the book. Star ratings indicate the most notable nutrients in each superfood. With Superfoods, readers will get the most nutritional bang for their buck.

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Review

[Reinhard’s] book is arranged by food type: vegetables, mushrooms, legumes, fruits, nuts and oils, herbs and spices, grains, meats, dairy food, and beverages. In this second edition, she gives data on new research about the food (“The Healthy Evidence”), and how effective that food is. For each superfood, she has details on nutritional content, seasonal variations, curative value, combinations that enhance their efficacy and those to avoid, how to maximize the beneficial effects of each, prep advice, and culinary tips… There are lots here such as an explanation of anti-oxidants, omegas, free radicals, enzymes, and minerals. Certainly, you’d want to begin eating these foods before many others… and quickly. There are also updated nutritional tables and a glossary. (Dean Tudor Gothic Epicures 2014-05-18)

There are a lot of super things about this book, where approximately 200 such foods are listed, many that you likely enjoy already… Each super food listed in the book is backed up with “healthy evidence.” You may be surprised by the foods noted here… Every page has the potential to change and save your life. Superfoods gives you proof that a vast variety of foods can truly enhance your life and help you live longer. And that is the most super reason of all to pick up this book. (Shelf Life 2015-05-01)

[Review of previous edition] Superfoods: The Healthiest Foods on the Planet is a comprehensive compendium of the world’s healthiest foods and how to get the most out of them. Registered dietician Tonia Reinhard gives expert advice in this easy-to-use guide on the very best 200 high-powered, super-healthy foods. She debunks many erroneous advertisements and rumors. An introduction includes a definition of “superfoods,” the beneficial compounds in each, the role of antioxidants, going organic, and how to use this book, along with a colorful picture of the food. She provides essential tips on how to maximize each food’s beneficial effects as well as some culinary tips. Superfoods is organized by food type…. Each entry contains a brief history of the food; a reference to a medical study; vitamin, mineral, and phytochemical content; and tips on usage…. Recommended for the public library, the general interested reader, and health providers. (Nadine Salmons American Reference Books Annual 2010 2011-03-01)

[Review of previous edition] Not a bad idea to leaf through and then throw a few of these “superfoods” into your grocery cart each week. In other words, hello gogi berry, wheat germ, and pumpkinseed pancakes! (Amy Rosen Canadian House and Home 2011-01-19)

[Review of previous edition] Whether you want to take small steps to change or completely overhaul your diet, this comprehensive guide is sure to help you. (Due West_Due East 2011-04-30)

[Review of previous edition] If consumers were asked whether they would change their diets if they knew specific foods would combat certain conditions, help retard their aging process, and provide the energy they needed to function at their best, it is safe to bet that the answer would be a resounding yes. Enter Registered Dietician Tonia Reinhard. In her latest book, Superfoods: The Healthiest Foods on the Planet… she cites the ongoing research into the links between food and health, and the scientific evidence that proves the effectiveness of individual foods on certain conditions…. In addition, the author includes the “Healthy Evidence” that led to the inclusion of each, and provides detailed information including nutritional content, seasonal variations, curative value, combinations that enhance their efficacy and those to avoid, how to maximize the beneficial effects of each [and] preparation advice and culinary tips… This comprehensive guide will help you design your own
portfolio of powerful foods. (FoodReference.com 2010-12-03)

[Review of previous edition] Reinhard, a registered dietitian, compiled this guide to 200 of the most nutrient-dense foods. The book is divided by food type with sections on vegetables and fruit, legumes, nuts and oils, herbs and spices, grains, beverages and treats, nutritional supplements, and, yes, meat! Each entry contains a brief history of the food; a reference to a medical study; vitamin, mineral, and phytochemical content; and tips on usage. Many of the foods are familiar, such as olive oil, lentils, and almonds. Lesser-known ingredients such as goji berries and spirulina are also highlighted… A solid beginner’s reference, especially for those seeking the authority of medical studies. (Rukshana Singh Library Journal 2010-11-15)

[Review of previous edition] Turn to this book to learn how to get the most out of the world’s nutrient-dense super-healthy foods. Organized by food type, Superfoods covers nutritional content and potential health benefits while providing recipe ideas and guidance on food combinations. (Taste for Life 2011-03-01)

This just-released edition by registered dietitian Tonia Reinhard is a must-have addition to your culinary library. Reinhard provides comprehensive and science-based health evidence for each of the 200 superfoods highlighted, as well as nutritional information and history. It’s one-stop reading on nutrition. (Canadian Health and Lifestyle 2014-03-31)

About the Author

Tonia Reinhard, MS, RD, is Program Director for the Coordinated Program in Dietetics and Course Director for Clinical Nutrition in the School of Medicine at Wayne State University, Michigan. Tonia has written several books, including The Clinical Dietitian’s Essential Pocket Guide and The Vitamin Sourcebook. She is currently President of the Michigan Dietetic Association, and her experience as a practitioner includes clinical nutrition, clinical management, and community nutrition.

Excerpt. © Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.

Introduction

The meaning of the word “superfood” has evolved over time and taken on specific connotations in different parts of the world. According to the Oxford English Dictionary (OED), the term dates back to two early usages in print media in 1915 and 1949. The OED entry provides an adequate general definition: “food considered especially nutritious or otherwise beneficial to health and well-being.” In recent years, however, some more specific definitions have had to be created, partly to protect consumers against unscrupulous marketing practices.

A concept that has been widely employed to help better define the meaning of “superfood” is that of the “nutrient density” of foods, whereby foods are described as either “nutrient-dense” (or “nutrient-rich”) or “nutrient-poor.” The so-called essential nutrients are compounds that we need to grow and maintain our bodies and can only obtain from food; they include protein, carbohydrates, fat, minerals, and vitamins. A nutrient-dense or nutrient-rich food is one that provides significant levels of these nutrients in a reasonable number of calories. A useful way to get to grips with this concept is to think of your optimal daily calorie level, a level that does not promote weight gain, as money. When we buy things, we all want to get the best product for our dollars; likewise, we have a limited number of calories that we can use each day, so we want to obtain the highest possible levels of essential nutrients for those limited calories.

And it’s certainly true that many superfoods are nutrient-rich foods–dark, leafy vegetables, for example, are high in vitamin A and other essential nutrients, and low in calories. But superfoods also include foods that are high in other compounds that are not essential nutrients but may still offer health benefits–most notably, the compounds collectively known as phytochemicals.

According to current scientific understanding, the potential benefits of eating foods that are high in either nutrients or phytochemicals, or both, include the fact that they may help lower our risk of developing certain chronic diseases, including cancer, cardiovascular disease, and type 2 diabetes. In the majority of Western countries, these are the leading causes of death. So, by incorporating the foods in this book into your eating plan, you might well increase your likelihood of living longer.

Praise for the first edition: “A solid beginner’s reference, especially for those seeking the authority of medical studies.” — Library Journal “Recommended.” — American Reference Books Annual 2010 Over 80 superfood entries updated with the latest health research discoveries. Since this comprehensive reference was first published, major studies have reinforced the importance and potential value of obtaining nutrients from foods rather than supplements. Many of the studies have discovered previously unknown health benefits of great significance, such as a reduced risk for dementia with the consumption of blueberries. In all, over 80 entries in this new edition have had their “Healthy Evidence” section updated to reflect the outcome of major reputable medical studies, including: Garlic supplements are beneficial for cirrhosis patients Cherries will lessen the frequency of gout attacks Soybean consumption is effective in lowering cholesterol Kale inhibits the growth of human colon cancer cells Studies have also confirmed that Chia seed is a superfood for its protective effects against heart disease. Superfoods is organized in broad categories: Vegetables; Mushrooms; Legumes; Fruits; Nuts and Oils; Herbs and Spices; Grains; Meat, Seafood, and Dairy; Beverages and Treats; and Nutritional Supplements. Each entry notes the food’s origin, its seasonal availability and nutritional values, tips on how to add it to an eating plan and how to optimize its nutrients and phytochemicals. Nutrient breakdowns are derived from the USDA’s Nutrient Database, and “The Healthy Evidence” refers to published peer-reviewed studies available from the US National Library of Medicine and National Institutes of Health database. The book closes with Nutritional Tables, a quick-reference guide to the nutritional content of the “superfoods” listed in the book. Star ratings indicate the most notable nutrients in each superfood. With Superfoods, readers will get the most nutritional bang for their buck.

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