Food is the fuel to the body thus choose to eat well! Being cautious about what goes into the system would ensure better and healthier you. The false notion that eating healthy is pricy is just an idea to propose unhealthy eatery more prominent. One can still eat healthily and economically and lead good health. It all begins with the self.
The talks of eating clean have been around for the longest time but most people don’t buy the idea because of the misconception that healthy eating is ‘EXPENSIVE’ which many times tend to get people to moan about the whole idea of eating clean. The perception of consuming healthy meals as ‘costly’ is merely a myth and we will tell you why!
You can still eat clean and healthy meals in Malaysia by adding some underrated ingredients to your meal plans. You can get these foods for less than RM5! Yeap, you heard us right! You don’t need to shop for overpriced groceries in order to achieve maximum health benefits. In fact, there are many superfoods which are inexpensive, delicious, highly nutritious and healthy!
- What Exactly Are Superfoods?
- Now, Why We Must Start Eating Superfoods?
- What Are The Most Inexpensive Superfoods In Malaysia?
- Finally, How To Make The Most Of Superfoods?
What Exactly Are Superfoods?
Superfoods are nutrient-dense foods that are extremely good for your health. Any foods that are packed with antioxidants, polyphenols, vitamins, and minerals are considered superfoods.
Superfoods are mostly plant-based food but nevertheless certain types of lean meat and some fishes and dairy products are also nutritionally dense and thus good for our health. Tomatoes, salmon, broccoli are just a few examples of foods that have garnered the “superfood” label.
Now, Why We Must Start Eating Superfoods?
The food you eat is what makes you as the saying goes “you are what you eat” and this is a bonafide statement. The choice of comestible people have these days are prone to highly synthetic edibles which is also causing their life expectancy as an average human a cutback.
Based on the world health ranking in 2018 Malaysia’s life expectancy for a male is 73.2 and for a female 77.6 and total life expectancy is 75.3 which gives Malaysia a World Life Expectancy ranking of 71. Which is not so great!
To make matter worst, the most common cause of deaths in Malaysia are diabetes, pancreas cancer, coronary heart diseases and stomach cancer, which are also all food-related diseases!
What Are The Most Inexpensive Superfoods In Malaysia?
These are the top 12 superfoods to keep an eye for the next time you go grocery shopping in Malaysia. Try to switch up your basic rice dishes and burgers to something healthy and delicious, consider stocking up on these delicious, budget-friendly superfoods for your body!
Rich in vitamin K, vitamin A and vitamin C, spinach is a superfood that often does not get the recognition it deserves! Spinach can reduce the risk of heart disease and cancer and boost our immune system. They also have the ability to reduce inflammation and prevent cell damage, which helps prevent chronic diseases. So, get super Popeye by eating spinach!
2. Moringa Leaves
Also known as drumstick trees, Moringa leaves can be seen all over in Malaysia and they have incredible benefits. Firstly, they’re very rich with powerful antioxidant that can help lower blood pressure Moringa is amazing at reducing blood sugar level as well. Boiling the moringa leaves and consuming its water can help weight loss too!
From guarding the heart to reducing the risk of cardiovascular diseases, radish host lots of benefits. The root vegetable can cleanse the stomach and improve digestion. Radish can also increase oxygen supply to the blood. If consumed daily without going overboard, radish can provide the system with ample roughage and fibres.
Catfish is the cheapest type of fish you can get in local Malaysian markets. Firstly, catfish are low in fat so if you are looking to have some lean protein, catfish is the best choice. They are also a great source of anti-inflammatory omega 3. They are also rich in minerals that work toward keeping the bones, muscles, heart and brain working properly.
5. Sun Berries
These incredible leaves can be found in every local market in Malaysia and it is very belittled. The sunberry leaves can heal ulcers, provide strength to muscles and improve vision! They are in fact the best medicine for headache and any type of skin infections as they work marvellously for acne and eczema. Sun berries can also treat asthma!
6. Maize/ Corns
Locally harvest corns are super cheap and fresh too! Part of the grain family, corns are high in fibre, minerals, vitamin and antioxidants. They can help with anaemia and increase the production of red blood cells. Those suffer from underweight issues should add corns to their diet as they are great in building healthy calories. Oh, corns help preserves a good skin too!.
7. Ulam Raja (Cosmos Caudatus)
The “Ulam Raja” is a common green which is extremely affordable and well known among Malaysians. The Malay community consume this raw as a bite with their meals! Ulam is a great supplement for diabetes especially type-2 diabetes and can also reduce liver inflammation and reduces blood pressure and is good for bone formation.
Turmeric is a spice that should always be in your drawer. They are super cheap and play a huge role in ancient Chinese and Indian medications. They are known for their powerful anti-inflammatory properties and can even inhibit cancer cell growth! So, sprinkle this spice on chicken or put a little bit in a smoothie to get your inexpensive, daily dose.
9. Sardine Fish
A local favourite, sardines are packed with vital nutrients. These small fish can be beneficial in the prevention of a number of health conditions including choric diseases like heart attacks, high blood pressure and even some type of cancers. Sardines are also highly recommended for pregnant women and older adults as they are high in calcium.
Cauliflower is another underrated vegetable in the list that possess high nutritional values. They are low in fat, but high in dietary fibre, folate and vitamin C. On top of that, this cruciferous vegetable can help also fight cancer with its cancer-fighting compound called glucosinolates.
Seaweeds are forms of algae that grow in the sea. They’re a good source of iodine which is necessary for thyroid function. They can also help cure colds and influenza, worm infestations and even tumours! Seaweeds are extremely versatile and can be used in many dishes like sushi rolls, soups and stews, salads, supplements and smoothies.
Also known as dhal, lentils are high in protein and iron. They are high in fibre and can stop the growth of unhealthy gut bacteria. Furthermore, eating lentils can improve your overall gut function and you protect against chronic diseases, such as heart disease and type 2 diabetes.
Finally, How To Make The Most Of Superfoods?
Despite being healthy the term ‘superfood’ is largely a marketing tool that many food manufacturers rely heavily on to shape the public’s perception of their products. So, bear in mind, the use of the term ‘superfood’ is that, while the food itself might be healthful, the processing might not be.
For example, fresh sardines are healthy which the processed packed ones are not! See, the difference that we are talking about here. Raw pure green teas are extremely good but sweetened milked green tea, on the other hand, can increase your sugar and fat level! The list goes on!
This is because the term ‘superfood’ is not scientific, so sometimes it can be misleading to eat one kind of food over another. The key here to eat anything and everything in moderation. People often think they can eat healthy food in unlimited quantities but the truth is eating too much healthy food can also increase weight and chances of getting sick!
In conclusion, superfoods are a good entry into healthy eating and you should include more healthy and cheap superfoods to your diet. But make sure you consume the cleanest form of the food and not the processed on. Understanding the nutritional value of these foods can be enlightening and help you pick the best one for you based on your body needs and wants!