Move over good ole’ fashion diet and exercise… superfood powders are taking over the health industry. Just visit any local, organic coffee shop or juicery, and you’ll see options like “spirulina” and “maca” listed on menus to add to your smoothie or latte (though as a side note, we wouldn’t recommend adding spirulina to your latte). So what exactly are superfood powders and what’s so super about them?
Simply put, superfoods are foods that are packed with exceptionally dense nutrition. They contain high amounts of vitamins and minerals that aid our immune system and in many cases fight inflammation. Superfoods are also typically plant-based, but can also fall into the fish and dairy food groups. Superfood powders are great because they can conveniently be added to your food incognito (think smoothies, soups, yogurt, etc.) to hide the sometimes off-putting tastes.
In recent posts, we’ve talked about the inflammation-fighting powers of some superfoods such as ginger, turmeric, and matcha. Here are a few more powerful pain-relief additions to your daily ingredient list.
This green superfood powder has many, many powerful health benefits. It’s a type of (good) bacteria, often referred to as blue-green algae, that grows in freshwater and saltwater.
The main, active component in spirulina is phycocyanin—a free radical-fighting substance that inhibits production of inflammatory signalling molecules.
Because of its intense, earthy taste, spirulina is typically best thrown into a smoothie with some fresh fruit to sweeten it up.
Native to Peru (and still mainly grown there), the maca root is typically dried and consumed in powder form.
A 2003 study showed that maca increases progesterone levels which can help reduce swelling and inflammation (along with boosting energy and lowering depression levels).
Maca has somewhat of an earthy and nutty taste, so it’s good in smoothies, oatmeal, or lattes.
Now that we’ve covered an algae and a root-based superfood powder, we’ve got an entire tree for you that’s edible and classified as a superfood—the Moringa tree. Its leaves can be cooked or made into a dried leaf powder that you can sprinkle on food or even tea.
Moringa has 7x the vitamin C compared to oranges, 4x the vitamin A of carrots, and 4x the calcium of milk. It’s also used to naturally treat multiple conditions including acute and chronic inflammation. A study conducted by a PhD graduate of UC Davis showed that moringa reduced inflammatory markers among other conditions like obesity and cholesterol because of the presence of isothiocyanates (like those found in broccoli) and polyphenols (like those found in berries and other fruits).
Moringa powder has a bitter, yet slightly sweet taste. So it’s best consumed when added to smoothies, juices, or yogurt.
So where can you find these superfood powders? You can purchase all or most of these at health food stores and also online. Just remember that it’s always best to buy the organic, non-GMO version and to know that they’re coming from a trusted source (especially if you’re buying online).
With any superfood, supplement, or herb, always talk to your doctor before consumption. If you’re pregnant, pay special attention to what is and isn’t safe for you to take and always consult your doctor first.And remember, diet is just part of the equation when it comes to pain relief. Using Pulsed Electromagnetic Field (PEMF) therapy, Oska Pulse is clinically proven to relieve pain. You can strap it on or near your point of pain while you're exercising, cooking, or enjoying your superfood powder smoothies.