The World’s Healthiest Foods:
The Top 56 Nutrient Dense Foods For Supercharging Your Health
BY CHRISTINE BAILEY
not all foods are created equal. some are far, far more nutrient dense foods than others, which if you are seeking greater health and wellness, you’ll definitely want to include in your diet. photo: nitsa citrine
Supercharged foods are natural ingredients that not only provide a wealth of nutrient density in a concentrated form but also have the ability to restore balance in the body. There is no such thing as a perfect food, so the emphasis in this article and in my book is to promote a wide variety of natural, nutrient-dense foods that can work synergistically to promote health and support body systems to accompany a weight-loss program.
The foods listed in this section are a selection of superstar, superfood ingredients that have been chosen for their ability to assist fat-burning, build muscle and stabilize blood sugar levels while promoting health and longevity. Many of these nutrient-dense foods are known to boost liver function, cleansing and detoxification, which are particularly effective in promoting weight loss.They have all been included in the recipes throughout the book. Many of the supercharged foods are now available in local health shops and supermarkets; all can be purchased online.
These include chlorella, spirulina and seaweed fakes. Both spirulina and chlorella are highly nutrient-dense foods and excellent sources of digestible protein, making them valuable for vegans. As they are strongly cleansing, I recommend that you introduce them gradually into your diet to allow the body to adapt to their properties.
Known for its detoxification and energizing properties, chlorella is a single-celled, water-grown alga. It is rich in chlorophyll, a nutrient that can support energy as well as detoxification in the body. Chlorella is extremely nutrient-dense and is rich in vitamins, minerals, amino acids, essential fatty acids, polysaccharides and other beneficial compounds. Buy as a powder for use in recipes or blend up ‘cracked cell’ tablets. Cracked cell ensures the nutrients are readily digestible.
Conscious Lifestyle Magazine Recommends:
Sun Potion Sound-Shattered Organic Chlorella Powder
Why we like it: Organic, highly bioavailable, energetically alive, nutrient rich chlorella.
Is an edible red seaweed that is eaten in East Asia, especially Japan. It provides protein and omega-3 fats and is a useful source of iron and calcium. It also contains iodine and trace minerals, which are needed to support thyroid function and metabolism. Buy as flakes or sheets.
CLM Recommends: Sound Sea Vegetables Organic Toasted Nori
Why we like it: Organically grown, toasted lightly, amazingly delicious nutrient dense food.
Belongs to a class of single-celled, blue-green spiral algae. It is a highly nutrient-dense food and is rich in chlorophyll, protein, vitamins, minerals, essential fatty acids, nucleic acids (RNA and DNA), polysaccharides and a vast spectrum of antioxidants. Buy as a powder or tablets.
CLM Recommends: Triquetra Health Organic Spirulina Powder
Why we like it: Ultra high quality, grown in pristine waters, free of heavy metals.
There are a number of good-quality bee products that have powerful anti-ageing and health-promoting benefits.
4. Bee pollen
Is an incredibly nutrient-dense food, supplied with amino acids, vitamins and minerals. A great source of energizing B vitamins, enzymes, amino acids and polysaccharides, it is thought to regenerate the body at a cellular level. Buy as granules.
CLM Recommends: Greenbow Organic Bee Pollen Granules
Why we like it: Harvested from bees that feed exclusively on organic, wild, non-gmo, plants and flowers. Low temperature dried to preserve nutrient density.
Is a traditional sweetener. Raw, unprocessed honey and manuka honey are rich in enzymes that can assist digestion. They are powerful immune boosters with anti-microbial properties and are rich in antioxidants. Honey is, nevertheless, a sugar, so it should be used only in very small amounts.
CLM Recommends: Y.S. Bee Farms Organic Raw Unprocessed Honey
Why we like it: Raw, unheated, unfiltered and organic. This honey has small amounts of naturally occurring superfoods like propolis, bee pollen and royal jelly.
6. Royal Jelly
Is the food given to bee larvae by the nurse bee for the first days of their life. It is thought to rejuvenate and regenerate the body and is often considered to be an anti-ageing food. A particularly nutrient dense food rich in folate as well as other B vitamins, it is valuable as a brain and energy tonic and is also nourishing for the adrenal glands. Buy as a powder or in capsules.
CLM Recommends: Y.S. Bee Farms Raw Royal Jelly
Why we like it: Superior beehive quality with maximum level of 10-HAD and raw honey for taste, extreme nutrient density.
Berries and Fruit
The fruits listed here are just a few of those known for their diverse range of antioxidants, nutrient density and vitamin C content. Fresh and dried berries add a sweetness to blends and are perfect for boosting energy. You can buy blended superberry powders that can be useful in the recipes. Certain specific berries are also available and beneficial for their concentration of valuable nutrients.
7. Acai berry
The dark-purple acai is an exceptionally high-antioxidant fruit and a very concentrated source of anthocyanins, which are known for their protective, anti-ageing benefits. The health properties of acai are boosted by the presence of healthy fats, fiber, phytosterols (plant fats that help to lower LDL cholesterol) and amino acids. They are also naturally low in sugars. Buy as a powder, freeze-dried capsules or as the unsweetened frozen pulp.
CLM Recommends: Terrasoul Superfoods Organic Freeze Dried Acai Berry Powder
Why we like it: Fresh freeze dried for maximum nutrient content and organic.
Also known as Indian gooseberry, amla is an exceptionally nutrient-dense food high in vitamin C, making it a protective, immune-supporting fruit. It contains chromium, which the body needs for blood sugar balance, and gut-friendly fiber. Buy as a powder.
CLM Recommends: Terrasoul Superfoods Organic Amla Powder
Why we like it: Sustainably harvested, organic and free from metals and chemicals.
Has a unique, tangy taste like a blend of grapefruit, pear and vanilla. With three times the vitamin C of an orange, iron and the minerals calcium, potassium and magnesium, baobab is a highly nutrient-dense food that is energizing and alkalizing. It is also rich in fiber and is fabulous for digestive health. Buy as a powder.
CLM Recommends: Baobest Organic Baobab Fruit Powder
Why we like it: Fair-trade product helps support West African women, organic quality.
Freeze-dried blueberry powder is a concentrated source of nutrients. Packed with phytochemicals, including anthocyanins, and with vitamin C, vitamin E and carotenoids, blueberries help support immune function, cognitive health, and protect against cancer and urinary tract infections. Buy as a powder or capsules.
CLM Recommends: Organic Wild Blueberry Concentrate
Why we like it: An ultra-high quality, antioxidant rich organic wild blueberry concentrate, free from preservatives, fillers, artificial colorings, soy or stearates.
11. Camu camu
The small, reddish, cherry-like camu camu fruit is an exceptionally nutrient-dense food high in vitamin C. Studies show that it contains a concentration of vitamin C of between 2 and 3 per cent (approximately 3,000mg per 100g/31⁄2oz of pulp), which is one of the highest known of any fruit. It also contains a range of antioxidants, B vitamins and minerals, such as potassium, iron and calcium. It is high in fiber and particularly useful for aiding weight loss and detoxification. Buy as a freeze-dried powder and use in small amounts only, due to its exceptionally high vitamin-C content. Between 1⁄4 and 1⁄2 teaspoon daily is sufficient—an excess may have a laxative effect. Do not heat camu camu, as this will destroy the vitamin C.
CLM Recommends: Terrasoul Superfoods Organic Camu Camu Powder
Why we like it: Low temperature dried to preserve nutrients, organic and pure.
Is known for its anti-viral and immune-supporting properties. It is rich in flavonoids and exceptionally rich in vitamin C. It also contains beta-carotene, potassium, fiber and vitamin B6, making it a fairly nutrient-dense food. It is traditionally used to relieve respiratory infections, arthritis and to combat an upset stomach. Buy as berries, syrup or tincture.
CLM Recommends: Source Nutrition Organic Elderberries
Why we like it: Ultra-high quality, hand-picked and vine ripened organic elderberries from an authentic European source. A legendary spiritual herb.
13. Goji berry
Also known as wolfberry, goji berries are frequently used in Chinese medicine for boosting longevity and enhancing energy and immune health. It is an extraordinarily nutrient-dense food high in amino acids and rich in carotenoids, vitamin C, various B vitamins and iron. Buy as the dried berries and as a powder.
CLM Recommends: Dragon Herbs Heaven Mountain Goji Berries
Why we like it: Sustainably harvested from pristine high mountain native environment, highly nutrient dense ancient superfood.
Also known as goldenberry, Cape gooseberry and Chinese lantern. The dried berries are delicious as a snack and have a citrus, slightly sweet–sour flavor. Packed with antioxidants, vitamins A and C, they are useful for strengthening the immune system. Buy as the sun-dried berries.
CLM Recommends: Navitas Naturals Organic Incan Berries (Goldenberries)
Why we like it: Organic, fair trade from pristine family farms in the Andes Mountains.
The delicious Peruvian lucuma fruit is useful as a natural sweetener and has a caramel-like flavor. It contains a variety of nutrients including vitamins, minerals and fiber, such as beta-carotene, vitamins B1, B2, B3, B5 and niacin, as well as the minerals iron, potassium, calcium and phosphorus, making it one of the most nutrient-dense foods and berries on the planet. Buy as a powder.
CLM Recommends: Terrasoul Superfoods Organic Lucuma Powder
Why we like it: Ultra high quality, harvested from fair trade family farms, highly nutrient dense food.
16. Maqui berry
This traditional Chilean food is renowned for its anti-ageing properties. It is one of the highest antioxidant fruits in the world and is especially rich in polyphenols and anthocyanins, which help to protect and repair the body’s cells. It’s a great source of vitamin C. Buy as a powder or as capsules.
CLM Recommends: Navitas Naturals Organic Maqui Powder
Why we like it: Sources in pristine Patagonia region, tasty and free from chemicals or metals.
17. Montmorency cherry
This tart cherry delivers a much greater content of anthocyanins than sweet cherries, as well as higher amounts of other nutrients. It has been shown to improve insulin function, aid weight loss and support cognitive function. Tart cherries are a natural source of melatonin to promote sleep. They are anti-inflammatory and may help lower your risk of gout and reduce the pain and inflammation associated with osteoarthritis. Available as a concentrated juice or dried sour cherries.
CLM Recommends: Dynamic Health Organic Tart Cherry Juice Concentrate
Why we like it: Ultra high quality tart cherry juice, concentrated for maximum nutrients. No fillers or preservatives.
18. Mulberry leaf
Has long been used for the prevention and treatment of diabetes, as it contains compounds that suppress high blood sugar levels. Mulberry leaves are high in antioxidants including quercetin, known for its anti-inflammatory properties. Buy as a powder or tea.
CLM Recommends: Kanchana Organic Mulberry Tea
Why we like it: From pristine Thai highlands, organic and chemical free.
Is the common name for Morinda citrifolia, a tropical tree native to the Polynesian islands. The ripe fruit has a citrus-like flavor and is rich in polysaccharide compounds known to support immune health. Packed with powerful antioxidants, noni is a wonderful anti-ageing and nutrient-dense fruit. Buy as a powder or raw juice.
CLM Recommends: Healing Noni Raw Organic Hawaiian Noni Juice
Why we like it: No heat used at all to preserve nutrients, grown in nutrient rich volcanic soil on Hawaii.
Has high levels of antioxidants and potassium, which can help maintain healthy blood pressure. It also contains phytoestrogenic compounds, making it helpful for balancing the female hormones. Buy as the fresh fruit or as a powder.
CLM Recommends: Navitas Naturals Organic Pomegranate Powder
Why we like it: Freeze dried to protect nutrient content, tasty and organic.
21. Sea buckthorn
This orange berry is known for its skin-regenerating properties and as a rare but powerful nutrient-dense food. It is very high in vitamin C and quercetin, an anti-inflammatory phytonutrient. It contains omega-7 fat, making it very nourishing for the skin. Buy as 100 per cent pure sea buckthorn juice.
CLM Recommends: Genesis Today Organic Gold Sea Buckthorn Juice
Why we like it: 100% pure, organic, maximum nutrient density, no preservatives or additives.
This is the raw, unprocessed source of chocolate. Raw, unsweetened cacao powder, which is high in antioxidant flavones, is very different from the common, commercial cocoa drinks and chocolates. Cacao is derived from cacao beans, one of nature’s most supercharged, nutrient-dense foods due to its mineral content and wide array of unique and varied properties. Raw cacao is one of the best food sources of magnesium. It is also exceptionally rich in chromium, which is used to help control blood sugar. It contains a number of compounds known to boost mood and relaxation such as tryptophan, theobromine and phenylethylamine (PEA). As well as the powder and butter, some recipes use cacao nibs, which are slightly bitter and have a strong chocolate flavor and a wonderful crunchy texture.
CLM Recommends: Natural Miracles Raw Organic Cacao Powder
Why we like it: Ultra high quality raw, organic Arriba cacao from sustainable farms in Ecuador. Low temperature dried and processed for maximum nutrient density and freshness.
Dried Fungi, Grasses, Herbs, Leaves, Roots and Vegetables
23. Aloe vera
Is particularly useful in supporting digestive health and blood sugar balance, and is an ideal cleansing tonic, great for radiant skin. Buy as a juice or gel. Look for brands that contain 100 per cent aloe as these are higher in nutrient-density.
CLM Recommends: Aloe Force Raw Aloe Vera Juice
Why we like it: The highest quality product available on the plane, uses a special low-temperature, ultra-sensitive processing method to extract the leaf juice and maintain all nutrients.
Often referred to as ‘Indian ginseng’, Ashwagandha is an adaptogenic herb (to enhance endurance) widely used in many parts of Asia. It is also used as a rejuvenating tonic, sedative, immune-supporting and nutrient-dense food, and is valued as an anti-ageing herb. It may help to calm the mind, improve memory and harmonize body systems. Buy as a powder or tea.
CLM Recommends: Sun Potion Organic Ashwagandha Root Powder
Why we like it: Ultra-high-quality, sourced from small organic farms, cold water extracted for maximum nutrient density.
Is one of the great tonic herbs used to support the immune system and strengthen the body, astragalus root is a popular energy tonic for athletes and anyone looking for more day-today energy and vitality. Buy as a powder.
CLM Recommends: Vitajing Organic Astragalus Root Extract Powder
Why we like it: Highly concentrated for maximum nutrient density and medicinal effects.
Is one of the most popular medicinal mushrooms and is known for its strong immune-enhancing properties, its high levels of antioxidants and its anti-viral properties. It is an amazing health-and-longevity tonic, full of phytonutrients that slow down the ageing process. Chaga contains a range of active ingredients: sterols, triterpenes, saponins and polysaccharides and it is also immunostimulatory. Buy as a powder.
CLM Recommends: Zen Mushroom Wild Harvested Chaga Powder
Why we like it: Sustainably hand harvested from wild forests in Maine and Canada.
27. Cissus quadrangularis
Is a perennial plant and a member of the grape family. It is used to help stress levels, lower high cortisol and reduce anxiety. It is also taken to maintain healthy bones, digestive function and respiratory health and is an exceptionally nutrient-dense food. Buy as a powder.
CLM Recommends: USA Grown Cissus Quadrangularis Extract Capsules
Why we like it: 100% Pure and grown under strict quality control standards in the USA without the use of any chemicals or synthetic ingredients.
28. Ginkgo biloba
Is one of the oldest trees known for its benefcial properties and has been used to support health for thousands of years. The leaf extracts contain several active constituents with neuro-protective and cardio-protective properties. Rich in favonoids, which help to strengthen the capillaries, promote healthy blood fow to the brain and maintain cognitive health, ginkgo is ideal for a mental boost. Buy as a powder or tincture.
CLM Recommends: Vitajing Herbs Organic Ginkgo Biloba Extract Powder
Why we like it: Premium quality, ultra-high potency extract wildcrafted and harvested in its native habitat for maximum nutrient density.
Products are usually used as a general tonic and adaptogen to help the body adapt to daily stress. They are particularly useful for improving physical and mental performance, vitality and to reduce fatigue. Ginseng contains a range of compounds: ginsenosides, saponins, phytosterols, peptides, polysaccharides, fatty acids and polyacetylenes, as well as vitamins and minerals, making it an exceptionally nutrient-dense food. There are several species of ginseng: Panax ginseng, often chosen for its abilities to help tackle stress; American ginseng, Panax quinquefolius, to improve blood sugar or to ease dry coughs; Siberian ginseng, Eleutherococcus senticosus, an excellent energy, stress and blood tonic – great for athletes. Buy ginseng products as a powder, tincture or encapsulated powder.
CLM Recommends: Paradise Herbs Wildcrafted Panax (Korean) Ginseng Root
Why we like it: An ultra-high quality, highly concentrated Korean panax ginseng root extract from 57 year old mature roots for maximum medicinal properties and effects.
30. Green coffee
Is unroasted coffee beans that are particularly rich in phytochemicals known as chlorogenic acid. These have been shown to improve insulin function, boost metabolism and weight loss. Buy as a powder or capsules. Do not take if you are sensitive to caffeine.
CLM Recommends: NatureWise Green Coffee Bean Extract
Why we like it: High potency, high quality, medicinal extract for maximum benefit.
31. Green tea and matcha green tea powder
Of green and black tea, green is the least processed and provides the most antioxidant polyphenols, notably a catechin called epigallocatechin-3-gallate (EGCG), which is believed to be responsible for most of the tea’s health benefts. For optimal benefts, use matcha green tea powder, because when you The Supercharged drink matcha you ingest the whole leaf, not just the brewed water. One glass of matcha is the equivalent of 10 glasses of green tea in terms of its nutritional value and antioxidant content, making it a powerful nutrient-dense food when consumed in this form. It is an effective fat burner and energizing food, and its high antioxidant levels mean it is also helpful in protecting the body from harmful free-radical damage. Green tea also contains the amino acid L-theanine, which stimulates the production of alpha brain waves to create a state of calmness and mental alertness. Buy as a powder or use an infusion of green tea in drinks.
CLM Recommends: DoMatcha Organic Summer Harvest Green Tea
Why we like it: Shade grown, finest quality top leaves only, high in catechins, grown in native match region.
This adaptogenic herb is taken to invigorate the body and restore strength and vitality as well as to calm the body to relieve anxiety. The main active ingredients are saponins, which have potent antioxidant, liver-supportive and anti-infammatory activity. Buy as tea bags or as a powder.
CLM Recommends: Fair Trade Gynostemma Tea
Why we like it: Grown without pesticide or chemical fertilizers by local farmers in the pristine mountains of Chiang Mai, Thailand – in the foothills of the Himalayas.
A radish-like, nutrient-dense root and food, maca is known for its adaptogenic properties and has the ability to help the body adjust to stress, build up resistance to disease and support immunity. It can also be taken as an energy food for combating fatigue. Its delicious, sweet butterscotch flavor means that it blends beautifully with cacao in drinks. Maca works directly on the hypothalamus and pituitary glands: the body’s ‘master glands’, which help to regulate other glands, such as the levels of sex hormones in men and women. Buy as a powder.
CLM Recommends: Terrasoul Superfoods Organic Maca Powder
Why we like it: Grown on small family-owned farms high in the mountain plateaus of the Peruvian Andes. Low temperature dried for maximum nutrient density.
34. Milk thistle
Is a great addition to cleansing programmes, because it is packed with antioxidants, which help to protect the body from damage. Buy as a tea, powder, capsule or tincture.
CLM Recommends: Eclectic Institute Freeze Dried Organic Milk Thistle Seed
Why we like it: Freeze dried for maximum potency and freshness, organic.
35. Moringa leaf
Although various parts of the Moringa oleifera plant can be used, it is the leaves that are most widely available in powdered form. They are a highly nutrient-dense food and particularly rich in beta-carotene, vitamin C, protein, calcium, iron and potassium. They are also rich in chlorophyll, making them alkalizing, cleansing and energizing. Buy as a powder.
CLM Recommends: Zen Principle Organic Moringa Leaf Powder
Why we like it: Sustainably sourced in the pristine Himalayan foothills, raw for maximum nutrient density.
36. Mucuna pruriens
Also known as velvet bean and cowitch, Mucuna is mostly known for containing a substance called L-dopa from which a very powerful neurotransmitter (a chemical at a nerve ending) is formed. L-dopa is an amino acid that converts into the ‘focus and motivation’ neurotransmitter, dopamine, making it effective for boosting mood. Mucuna can also help increase the production of human growth hormone, thereby boosting lean muscle and breaking down fat. It is also consumed as a nutrient-dense food in many parts of the developing world. Buy as a powder, caplets or capsules.
CLM Recommends: Himalaya Healthcare Organic Mucuna Caplets
Why we like it: High potency extract for maximum effect, additive free and pure.
37. Turmeric root
The health benefts of this, nutrient-dense food and curry spice lie in the active ingredient, curcumin. Studies have shown that turmeric possesses a wealth of properties including anti-infammatory and antioxidant benefits. It has also been shown to help support brain function and is valued for its anti-ageing benefits. Buy as the root, extract or ground.
CLM Recommends: Organic Curcumin (Tuermeric) Extract
Why we like it: A highly absorbable and bioavailable Organic Tumeric (Curcumin) extract, free from preservatives, artificial colorings, soy or stearates.
38. Wheatgrass powder
Is well known for its rejuvenating and alkalizing properties. Light and clean tasting, wheatgrass is packed with chlorophyll, making it incredibly energizing. It is also rich in B vitamins, antioxidants and vitamin A, as well as numerous minerals, including manganese, zinc and magnesium, earning it a spot as one of the world’s healthiest, most nutrient-dense foods. Its high fiber content means it is also a great addition to green juices and is beneficial for digestive health. Buy as a powder. There are also green superfood blend powders that will include wheatgrass and other green supercharged foods.
CLM Recommends: Amazing Grass Organic Wheat Grass Powder
Why we like it: Grown organically outdoors in hundreds of hours of sunlight and fresh soil for maximum nutrient density.
Is a tuber native to South America. It is rich in inulin, a type of fiber that breaks down slowly and provides food for the beneficial bacteria in the gut. Yacon is enjoyed as a natural sweetener because it has a low glycaemic index, meaning that it can be helpful for balancing blood sugar levels. It has a light molasses flavor. Buy as a syrup.
CLM Recommends: Blue Lily Organics 100% Pure Certified Organic Yacon Syrup
Why we like it: From Yacon plants grown in the pristine mountainous region of the Peruvian Andes for maximum nutrient density.
Fats and Oils
Natural fat is an essential macronutrient for health and longevity. The right types of fats in the correct proportions are important for brain function, lowering infammation, providing sustained energy, and for maintaining healthy cell membranes and nervous system function. They form the building blocks of hormones, which influence many biological processes throughout the body. In addition, fat helps to keep you feeling fuller for longer, it reduces cravings and helps you achieve a healthy weight loss. Certain fats have also been shown to boost the metabolism – so eating fat can actually assist weight loss and enhance the absorption of nutrient-dense foods. The following natural fats are used in the recipes in addition to the fats found in other foods, such as nuts and seeds.
40. Coconut oil
Provides richness to smoothies. Although it contains saturated fats, it is predominately rich in medium-chain triglycerides, which sustain energy levels and increase the metabolic rate. This makes it ideal for taking before workouts, for example. It also provides lauric acid and caprylic acid, which support immune health and possess antimicrobial properties, which enhance the effects of nutrient-dense foods by healing the gut and improving absorption of nutrients. For quality, buy organic virgin coconut oil, available in jars.
CLM Recommends: Bioactivated Alive Organic Coconut Oil
Why we like it: Hands down the highest quality and freshest coconut oil available. A highly nutrient dense food just as nature intended.
41. Lecithin granules
Made from soya or sunflower seeds, lecithin contains a naturally occurring mixture of phospholipids. Phospholipids are an essential component of cell membranes and particularly important for brain health and the nervous system. They are also a nutrient-dense food on their own. Buy as granules.
CLM Recommends: Now Foods Non-GMO Sunflower Lecithin Granules
Why we like it: Non-GMO, tasty, great value, additive free.
42. MCT oil
MCT stands for medium-chain triglycerides. It is comprised primarily of caprylic and capric fatty acids, and is a light-yellow, odourless, translucent liquid at room temperature. It is normally derived from coconut oil. MCT oil is processed by the liver and immediately burned to produce energy. It may increase metabolism, thereby helping you to burn fat. Buy in bottles.
CLM Recommends: Sports Research Organic MCT Oil
Why we like it: Pure, MCT oil derived from fresh organic coconuts.
43. Omega-3 and -6 oils
There is a range of omega-rich oils that provide a good balance of the essential fatty acids omega-3 and -6. These include flaxseed oil, chia oil and hempseed oil, as well as omega-blended oils, which happen to also be nutrient-dense foods in their own right when unprocessed. Store these oils in the fridge. Buy as organic cold-pressed oils and capsules.
CLM Recommends: Vital Choice Wild, Cold-Pressed Alaskan Salmon Oil
Why we like it: Hands down the worlds freshest, purest, most potent, best-tasting fish oil. Cold-pressed from fresh, wild Alaskan Salmon. A highly nutrient dense food.
44. Kefir and kombucha
Are nutrient-rich, fermented drinks that have been used for thousands of years to promote health and vitality. They provide a wide variety of beneficial probiotic bacteria, which are essential for supporting overall health, immune function, digestion and detoxification. Some of the recipes include kombucha, water kefir, milk kefir or coconut kefir to boost your intake of these beneficial bacteria. You can either make your own fermented drinks or purchase them from health shops or online.
CLM Recommends: Cultures For Health Kefir Grains
Why we like it: Non-GMO, Organic sugar culture, high quality.
Nuts and Seeds
Many of the recipes in my book include nutrient-dense nuts and seeds to provide additional protein – essential for maintaining muscle mass – healthy fats, vitamins and minerals. Super-seeds are:
45. Chia seed
Is a an exceptionally nutrient-dense food and rich source of protein, omega-3 fats and soluble fiber to balance blood sugar and support bowel health. It also contains valuable minerals including calcium and iron. Its high soluble-fiber content makes it absorb water very easily, making it plump up when added to liquids. Once digested, chia expands in the stomach, creating a sensation of fullness. Buy the whole seed for use in the recipes.
CLM Recommends: Nutiva Whole Organic Chia Seed
Why we like it: Ultra high quality, organic, hexane free, highly nutrient dense food.
Like chia, flaxseed is a seed and food known for its exceptional nutrient-density fiber content and high levels of omega-3 fats. It also contains lignans, a type of phytochemical (plant chemical) that can help to balance hormone levels. A good source of protein, flaxseed is also useful for stabilizing blood sugar levels and supporting energy. Buy the ground flaxseed.
CLM Recommends: Spectrum Organic Ground Flaxseed
Why we like it: Organic and cold milled to preserve nutrient density and heat sensitive compounds.
47. Hemp seed
Hemp provides a wealth of nutrition, including good levels of essential omega-3 fatty acids, amino acids and fiber. It is also a rich source of minerals, especially iron, potassium, zinc and magnesium, making it one the healthiest, most nutrient-dense foods on the planet. Hemp protein powder gives smoothies a rich, earthy flavour. The seeds add a lovely nutty flavour to drinks. Buy as soft, raw shelled hemp seeds.
CLM Recommends: Nutiva Raw Organic Shelled Hempseeds
Why we like it: Delicious, Non-GMO, raw hempseed for maximum nutrient density.
In order to support a healthy weight loss and retain muscle, it is important to consume sufficient protein. For this reason, I have added protein powders to some of the recipes in my book. These can be particularly helpful in stabilizing blood sugar levels and keeping you feeling fuller for longer as well as maintaining muscle mass, which is important for boosting metabolism.
If you are active or work out regularly, including protein powders post-training can assist your recovery, as they are nutrient-dense foods in terms of their amino acid content. Protein powders vary tremendously in terms of their constituents, so choose a high-quality powder without unnecessary fillers, additives and sweeteners. You will find a range of flavors, but I use plain, vanilla or chocolate in this book. Whey protein powders are popular and contain a good bioavailable source of amino acids and other components to support health; however, some people find dairy products difficult to digest. The recipes in this book use soya- and dairy-free vegan protein powders such as pea protein, hemp, rice or a sprouted superfood blend, which are also low in allergens and highly nutritious.
CLM Recommends: Raw, Organic Grass-Fed Whey Protein
Why we like it: An ultra-high quality, organic whey protein that is low-temperature processed to maintain protein quality and nutrient/amino acid absorbability
Supplements and Minerals
Is a highly nutrient-dense food and natural protein component of the skin and the main building block for cells, tissues and organs. About one-third of the protein content in your body is made up of collagen, which is found in the bones, muscles and tissues of the organs. Collagen, keratin and elastin give the skin its strength, elasticity and structure. Taking a collagen supplement can be helpful for improving skin health, supporting the gut lining, the bones, joints and healthy muscle mass. It is normally derived from marine or bovine sources. Buy as a powder.
CLM Recommends: Sports Research Non-GMO, Grass-Fed Collagen
Why we like it: From humanely treated, pasture raised, grass fed cows for maximum nutrient density.
Is the first milk produced by breastfeeding mothers, and it is renowned for its immune-boosting properties and as a unique and powerful nutrient-dense food in its own right. Bovine colostrum is used as a supplement and has a similar structure to colostrum produced by humans. Research has supported its many health benefits, particularly for improving digestive function and nutrient absorption, but also for balancing the immune system, increasing energy and reducing inflammation. Buy as a powder or as capsules.
CLM Recommends: Immune Tree Grass-Fed Colostrum Powder
Why we like it: Harvested from humanely treated, grass-fed cows at peak potency and freshness to create a powerfully nutrient dense food.
Is the most common amino acid found in the muscles and this makes it a popular supplement to use post-exercise to aid muscle recovery. Glutamine may also support the production of the growth hormone, which helps to improve muscle mass, making it ideal for weight loss programs. A key amino acid for the gut, glutamine also helps to repair and nourish the intestines and support immune function. Buy as a powder.
CLM Recommends: Pure Encapsulations Glutamine Powder
Why we like it: Ultra pure, ultra high quality powder.
51. MSM (methylsulfonylmethane)
Is an organic sulfur compound – an essential nutrient found in the body, playing a critical role in detoxification and in reducing inflammatory conditions. MSM is a beneficial nutrient for bone health, helping arthritis and improving joint flexibility. It has been shown to break down the calcification that is frequently associated with chronic inflammation, particularly in the arteries. It also increases the thickness and strength of nails and hair, and supports healthy skin. Buy as a powder.
CLM Recommends: Pure Encapsulations MSM Powder
Why we like it: Ultra pure and uses the best known form of Opti-MSM.
52. Nutritional yeast flakes
Are formed from deactivated yeast and are a complete protein that is particularly rich in the B vitamins, making it a useful energizing and highly nutrient-dense food. Buy in tubs or bags.
CLM Recommends: Sari Foods Non-GMO Nutritional Yeast Powder
Why we like it: Chemical free, additive and preservative free, non-GMO nutritional yeast powder. A highly nutrient dense food.
53. Probiotic powders
Beneficial bacteria (probiotics) are naturally present in the gut and are vital for overall health, digestion, detoxification, immune function and can even influence our mood. Beneficial bacteria can be easily diminished through stress, medications and a poor diet and they are an important part of a nutrient-dense foods diet as they help us to absorb nutrients from food. Probiotic powders are a convenient way to increase your levels of healthy bacteria.
CLM Recommends: Now Foods 10 Strain High Potency Probiotic Powder
Why we like it: Strong, pure, full spectrum, dairy free, high quality probiotics.
Is a brown pitch or tar (resin) that exudes from layers of rocks in several mountain ranges of the world, although it is often referred to as a herb. Because it possesses a range of minerals and itself is a highly nutrient-dense food, it is used as a supplement to mineralize the body. It also contains fulvic acid, which aids nutrient absorption as well as being a strong detoxifer. Buy as a resin (ideal), powder or capsules.
CLM Recommends: Purblack High-Potency Shilajit Resin
Why we like it: Harvested from a protected, ultra-clean and pure source. Highly nutrient dense food.
Commonly derived from rice bran, this highly nutrient-dense food provides a natural, concentrated source of bio-available vitamin E plus other nutrients and plant-based fats important for optimal health benefits. It is rich in antioxidants, B vitamins and minerals and adds a delicious, sweet flavor to a smoothie. Buy as capsules or as a powder.
CLM Recommends: Sun Potion Tocotrienols (Rice Bran)
Why we like it: Delicious, highly nutrient dense food, ultra high quality, highly digestible and bioavailable.
Is a natural volcanic mineral and one of the most powerful negatively charged minerals in nature. It is used as a natural chelating agent that allows the release of toxins, pesticides and heavy metals from the body. It is commonly used as a detoxifer. Buy as a liquid or powder.
CLM Recommends: Pure Planet Fulvic Zeolite Liquid
Why we like it: Totally natural, sourced from volcanic magma, highly pure.
Juice Recipes Incorporating Nutrient-Dense Foods
+ 1 cucumber
+ 2 celery sticks
+ 1 handful of spinach leaves
+ 1⁄2 lemon, peeled
+ 1⁄4 tsp wheatgrass powder or green superfood blend
Wheatgrass powder is a fabulous weight loss aid and highly nutrient-dense food. It adds nutrient intensity to this light juice while boosting detoxification. You need only a little to increase your vitamin and mineral intake and benefit from its cleansing power. Put all the ingredients, except the wheatgrass, through an electric juicer. Stir in the wheatgrass and serve immediately.
Nutritional information per serving
Kcals 63 | Protein 4.4g | Carbohydrates 7.9g, of which sugars 6.7g | Fat 0.8g, of which saturates 0.1g
+ 2 carrots
+ 1⁄4 small pineapple, skin cut off 1cm/1⁄2in piece of root ginger
+ 2 handfuls of spinach leaves
+ a pinch of ground cinnamon
+ 1⁄2 tsp Maca powder
+ 100 ml/3.5fl oz/generous 1∕3 cup coconut water
Keep your energy high as you detox with this refreshing juice. Maca powder is an adaptogenic herb and nutrient-dense food, known to strengthen the body and help to maintain optimal stamina and endurance. It is ideal as a cleansing and caffeine-free energizer.
Put all the ingredients, except the cinnamon, maca and coconut water, through an electric juicer. Stir in the remaining ingredients, or transfer the juice to a blender or food processor and blend to combine. Serve the juice immediately.
Nutritional information per serving
Kcals 150 | Protein 4.1g | Carbohydrates 30g, of which sugars 24.5g | Fat 1.4g, of which saturates 0.3g
This article on nutrient-dense foods is excerpted with permission from The Supercharged Green Juice & Smoothie Diet by Christine Bailey.
About The Author
Christine Bailey is an award winning Nutritional Therapist, Functional Nutrition Practitioner, Chef, Author and Broadcaster with over 18 years of experience. Trained in Functional Nutrition and with a passion for creating delicious nourishing recipes Christine has a reputation for transforming people’s health and love of real food. True health and happiness is not about depriving your body or counting calories. It’s time to fall back in love with food and enjoy preparing, simple, delicious beautiful food that nourishes your body, mind & soul. Visit her website: christinebailey.co.uk