Three Ordinary Foods Turn Out to Be 'Superfoods': They Contain So Few Calories That You Can Add Them to Many Dishes

Three Ordinary Foods Turn Out to Be 'Superfoods': They Contain So Few Calories That You Can Add Them to Many Dishes

In our journey towards healthier living, "superfoods" often make us think of exotic fruits and expensive supplements. However, some of the most potent superfoods might already be in your kitchen.

These everyday foods not only pack a nutritional punch but also contain so few calories that you can add them to various dishes without worrying about your waistline. Let's delve into three such foods that nutritionists and dietitians highly recommend.

  • Spinach

Spinach is a leafy green vegetable honored for its impressive nutrient profile. It's incredibly low in calories — just 23 calories per 100 grams — making it an excellent addition to any meal. Spinach is rich in vitamins AC, and K, as well as folate, iron, and calcium. These nutrients support a range of bodily functions, including immune health, vision, and bone strength.

You can easily incorporate spinach into salads, smoothies, and soups without significantly increasing the calorie count. It's also fantastic for boosting the nutritional value of omelets and sandwiches. According to the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, regular consumption of leafy greens like spinach is associated with a reduced risk of chronic diseases such as heart disease and diabetes.

  • Cucumbers

Cucumbers are another low-calorie superstar. With just 16 calories per 100 grams, they are mostly water—about 95%—which makes them an excellent hydrating food. Cucumbers are also a good source of vitamin K, which is important for bone health, and they provide small amounts of vitamin C and potassium.

Cucumbers can be eaten raw as a snack, added to salads, or blended into smoothies for a refreshing taste. They are also a staple in many detox waters and can be used to add crunch to sandwiches and wraps. 

  • Celery

Celery is often overlooked, but this humble vegetable is remarkably nutritious and low in calories—only 16 calories per 100 grams, like cucumbers. It's a good source of vitamins A, C, and K, as well as folate and potassium. Celery is also known for its high water and fiber content, which can help with hydration and improve digestion.

Celery can be eaten raw with dips like hummus or peanut butter, added to soups and stews, or included in salads for an extra crunch. The fiber in celery can help control blood sugar levels and promote a feeling of fullness, which is beneficial for weight loss and management.

The beauty of these three foods lies in their versatility and low-calorie count. Here are some simple and delicious ways to incorporate them into your diet:

  • Salads: Combine spinach, cucumber, and celery with your favorite veggies for a nutrient-packed salad.
  • Smoothies: Blend spinach and cucumber with fruits like banana and apple for a refreshing and healthy smoothie.
  • Snacks: Enjoy cucumber and celery sticks with healthy dips for a satisfying, low-calorie snack.
  • Main Dishes: Add spinach to your scrambled eggs, celery to your soups, and cucumbers to your sandwiches for a nutritious boost.