I’ve been known to fall hard into the supplement trap. Weight loss pills? I’ve tried them all. Probiotics? Every morning. If there was something you could put in pill form I would spend a ridiculous amount of money on it and swear by it.
Keep in mind the only supplement that was recommended to me by a medical professional was melatonin and it came with the caveat that it wasn’t an every night thing.
I haven’t taken a supplement in over a year and I’ve been doing better if anything. I’ve dropped dress sizes with minimal effort, my nails have been strong, my hair’s been shiny.
We all know supplements are unregulated. They can say whatever they want and list whatever ingredients may or may not be in there. I think there are some companies that get into with the right intentions, but most of the time the supplement business is all about the money.
Sometimes supplements are necessary, but those recommendations come from doctors, not magazines or celebrity endorsements.
I love the idea of a superfood. We’re all trying to be healthier and being able to do it by eating this one thing sounds like a really good deal. The problem is these “superfoods” tend to be tropical, expensive and super hard to get out of season. If you’re in a place where they’re native or you can grow them yourself then enjoy your geographic luck! For the rest of us, here’s a couple of swaps.
To be fair, I have a bee in my bonnet about avocado because my body does not like it. I can have a very tiny bit but anything more and my digestive system goes to war. Avocados are also expensive, and our modern lust for them has taken a bit of a toll on the environment. Olive oil is a great substitute when you’re looking to add monounsaturated fat to salads or soups. If you’re looking for a hit of potassium, as well as a toast aesthetic think mashed banana. Nut butter also works for a sweet toast or pesto for savoury. You can make pesto yourself with any “cookable” green- I like the classic basil, spinach, or arugula, nuts- which tend to be monounsaturated fat powerhouses, and oil. You can add in garlic, lemon, or parmesan cheese. Just whiz it all in a food processor, or my preferred method of a mortar and pestle and some demons that need smashing out and you’re in budget business.
I used to work at a tourist attraction that wanted to try to health themselves up so they brought in packs of dried goji berries for staff to try. Sadly they didn’t find them financially viable, but for one blissful summer, they almost completely replaced my candy habit. They’re sadly hard to find and a bit expensive in Ireland, so it’s tough to consider these more than an occasional treat. The best substitution? Literally any berry. Dried cranberries are closest in texture and flavour to a dried goji. As for fresh, I don’t think freezer berries get the credit they deserve. They’re picked at peak freshness so they’ve still got a tonne of nutrients in them. They’re great for baking or cook them into a jam substitute with a splash of water and honey or sugar if you’re feeling cheeky. If you get a deal in the summer freezing them yourself is a great option- just spread the berries out on a cookie sheet and once they’re frozen pop them in a more permanent freezer container.
What other superfoods would you love a swap for?