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Every other day there is a new food item coming from some jungle of some country being called the next “superfood.”

If you ask me, this term, “superfood,” is greatly over used. From oatmeal to blueberries, we’ve heard it all. But what is the definition of a superfood?

A superfood is a food that is extremely high in antioxidants. When measured by weight, the more disease-fighting, wrinkle-preventing antioxidants packed into one food – the more “super” it is.

To measure antioxidants, we use the “ORAC Scale” (Oxygen Radical Absorbance Capacity). This let’s us know, scientifically, just how healthy that food is.

For example, a traditional high-antioxidant food, like blueberries, have 2,400 ORAC units per 100g. This is pretty good for your grocery store aisle! Blueberries are definitely a healthy food, but they aren’t a superfood.

Goji berries (a pink Chinese berry) have 25,300 ORAC units per 100g. Taking it even further, raw cacao (chocolate) has about 98,000 ORAC units per 100g. These, my friends, are superfoods.

Antioxidants are extremely important for a number of reasons. Antioxidants do exactly what their name suggests. They’re anti-oxidation. Oxidative stress in the body causes a number of things: aging, joint pain, cancer, arthritis, heart disease, etc.

There are great superfoods you can add to your daily routine. Here are a list of my favorites and their ORAC numbers:

  1. Chaga Mushroom (110,400)
  2. Raw Cacao (98,000)
  3. Goji Berries (25,300)
  4. Chia Seeds (8,000)
  5. Acai Berries (5,500)
  6. Chlorella (5,000)
  7. Camu Camu (3,200)

By eating a diet that is high in antioxidants and adding superfoods to your meal plan, you are helping to prevent health problems down the road. By eating antioxidant-rich superfoods, you may even see a reversal in premature aging or other unwanted health concerns!

Use every meal as a tool to add more superfoods into your diet and you can feel, see, and taste the difference.

For more information, check out One Green Planet’s Ultimate Superfood Guide!

Image Source: Stacy/Flickr