Monday, August 25, 2014

What Makes a Superfood a Superfood?

During my free time, I often ponder life’s greatest questions... 

What came first the chicken or the egg? What do I want to be when I grow up? Before money was invented, what did women find attractive about men? If work is so terrific, how come they have to pay you to do it? Are Jay Z and Beyonce really getting a divorce? What fruit or vegetable is the best? 

Ok so maybe that last one is just specific to dietitians, but I am often asked what fruit or vegetable is the best. While I was in school studying to become a dietitian, there was never a lecture on what fruit or vegetable is the best. So what is my response when I am asked this question? All of them, one is not necessarily better than the other. All of the different fruits and vegetables contain different nutrients that your body needs. Asking what fruit or vegetable is the best is like asking which Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle is the best. Even though I have a preference towards Michelangelo, I recognize that each turtle has special talents that when pooled together, help them save NYC from Shredder. Not to be all hippy and sappy but this picture gets my point across pretty well…

Well What About Superfoods?
Again, back to the whole studying to become a dietitian thing. There was never a lecture or test question asking us to name the top ten superfoods. Actually, the term superfood was never even uttered. The term superfood is merely just a marketing term that really doesn’t have any meaning. To help explain this, and so you do not need to read my ramblings, check out this video.

Note: the ladies in this video say nutritionist but they mean registered dietitians. On that note, do yourself a favor and never call a dietitian a nutritionist. For more info why check out my previous blog post

Are some fruits and vegetables more nutrient dense than others? Yes. Let’s take iceberg lettuce for example. Compared to spinach, iceberg lettuce does not contain as many nutrients. Does this mean you should never eat it? No, it still has desirable traits such as being low in calories and a good source of fiber. Yes, spinach is a better choice nutritionally speaking, but eating iceberg lettuce isn’t going to wreck your diet. Nutrient density is relative. After all, iceberg lettuce is more nutrient dense than chips or soda. Next time you hear the term “superfood” take it with a grain of salt, like my friend Dr. Evil...

Until next time!

Keep it Fresh,
Keep it Green,



  1. Hi Katrina! The video is showing up for me but try this link: