The food superheroes

By: Sophia Lin

Star Vista and Raffles Hotel Arcade
Posted on: 15 Feb 2024

With so many products marketing ‘anti-aging’ and promoting ‘immune health’, it can be challenging to understand where to start.  One of the first places to begin is to consider the nourishment we bring into our bodies.

Anti-inflammatory foods help our body repair, rebuild. They have been shown to reduce free radical damage. Numerous studies demonstrate anticancer, antioxidant, anti-inflammatory and antiviral benefits. In addition anti-inflammatory foods have been shown to reduce cholesterol, triglyceride and have anti-obesity benefits. There is even evidence that they prevent premature aging and deterioration of brain function! Whether you are in menopause or a young athlete these foods are beneficial to all! 

What are in ‘anti-inflammatory’ foods? 

In essence, all these foods contain phytochemical compounds. (Phyto – is the root word for plants)!  

  1. Anthocyanidins 
  2. Beta-carotene 
  3. Catechin 
  4. Carotenoids 
  5. Flavonoids 
  6. Isoflavones 
  7. Polyphenols 

What are examples of these phytochemical compounds?  

  1. Anthocyanidins: produced by red and purple berries 
  2. Beta-carotene: found in orange and dark green leafy vegetables 
  3. Catechin: present in black grapes, apricots and strawberries 
  4. Carotenoids: produced in pumpkin, carrots and bell peppers 
  5. Flavonoids: found in tea and wine 
  6. Isoflavones: contained in soybeans 
  7. Polyphenols: produced by cloves, berries and dark chocolate 

 Anthocyanidins 

  • Fruit: Acai, blueberries, blackberries, blackcurrants, cranberries, pomegranates, raspberries, red grapes 
  • Whole grain: purple corn, black rice 
  • Vegetables: black carrots, black soybean, purple sweet potatoes, red cabbage, purple tomatoes 

Foods with Beta-carotene 

  • Fruit: cantaloupes, papayas, apricots, mangos, oranges 
  • Vegetables: carrots, spinach, romaine lettuce, tomatoes, sweet potatoes, broccoli, winter squash, pumpkins, butternut squash, black-eye peas, red peppers, pea pods 

Catechin 

Catechins are distributed in a variety of foods and herbs. 

  • Beverages: green tea, oolong tea, black tea, flower tea, cocoa, Tibetan tea, wine 
  • Fruit: guava, pears, apples, persimmons, grapes, berries, cherries, peaches, plums, strawberries 
  • Vegetables: lentils, board beans, fava beans 

Flavonoids 

  • Herbs: parsley, oregano, elderberry flower juice 
  • Beverages: tea, wine, chocolate 
  • Fruit: apples, berries, cherries, citrus fruits
  • Vegetables: leafy vegetables, onions, soybeans 

Isoflavones 

Legumes (Fabaceae family) such as soy, white and red clover, alfalfa and beans 

  • Soy 
  • Fermented soybean, tofu or soy beverages 
  • Soy flour, protein isolate 
  • Edamame 
  • Soybeans, soy flakes 
  • Miso 
  • Tempeh 
  • Nato 

Polyphenols 

  • Spices:  turmeric, cloves, cinnamon, ginger, cumin, dark chocolate 
  • Beverages: black tea, coffee, chai  
  • Fruits: blueberries, plums, cherries, apples, strawberries, black currants 
  • Nuts: hazelnuts and pecan / black olives 
If you would like to understand more and develop a personalised meal plan for your individual needs, please come in to see Sophia Keng-I Lin our in-house dietitian
Make an appointment here
Raffles Hotel Arcade Star Vista