The Superfood trend began in the 1980s but didn’t really catch on because fast food offerings were still popular among adults, teens and even children. It was only during the turn of the millennium in the year 2000 when consumers started taking notice of the so-called superfoods. Mainly because two decades of consuming high-calorie fast food had caused several and varying health issues; with obesity as the number one trigger factor.
As more and more people became increasingly health conscious, manufacturers of the super food products were encouraged to produce and add new super foods each year.
In the early years of its introduction, super foods referred to food with immense abilities to improve health through its healing properties as well as ability to lead and sustain weight loss.
A type of fruit or vegetable can be promoted to superfood if it contains high levels of essential health nutrients, usually when associated with disease prevention. In some cases, superfoods are those believed to offer multiple health benefits with high nutritional values.
However, most of the powerful foods and products branded as super foods are not backed by scientific studies upholding their abilities to heal diseases, prevent disorders or even promote weight loss.
General Conditions that Qualify a Food as Present-Day Superfood
The concept of superfoods and related products that make use of superfoods as ingredients, evolved through the years. Today the superfood classification also recognize the following conditions as criteria:
Plants that grow abundantly like weeds but have found use as nutritious ingredient of plant-based vegan products. They are considered superfoods because they helped grow the vegan movement, which has been helpful in reducing the impact of meat consumption on the environment.
Food items that support the zero-waste movement have become popular in restaurants. Menus are using chicken stocks and broths made from chicken bones. Some restaurants are pan-frying cauliflower leaves to make tasty chips as appetizers, while others are making tasty pesto-like salad garnishing made from carrot leaves.
Today, superfoods are those capable of providing nutrients from leaf-to-roots or from nose-to-tail to avoid food wastes.