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Healthmaxx Your Diet With These Ayurvedic Superfoods

by Venesa Daswani

Trending Now: Are – You – Vedic?

By: Grace Clark and Ayush Madan

In the ever-evolving wellness landscape, much has changed. Ramping up during the dieting fads of the early ‘90s and 2000s, today’s supplement market has soared to an unprecedented USD 177.5 billion, reflecting a booming industry deeply influenced by Western wellness trends propagated through social media, influencers, and celebrities. Exercise and diet remain at the forefront of this movement, with a significant nod to the rising popularity of aesthetics such as the ‘pink pilates princess’, ‘balletcore’, and ‘that-girl’. Such aesthetics reflect the modern wellness lifestyle, rooted in holistic health, and propelled by a sense of visual appeal, social media influence, and romanticisation. However, this raises the question of whether these wellness ‘lifestyles’ are genuinely sustainable and if they truly address the essence of wellness: health.

As the pursuit of health and vitality continues, we have observed that one trend enduring through the ebb and flow of wellness fads is the consistent popularity of superfoods. Superfoods are nutrient powerhouses, chock-full of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants crucial to your health. They have become staples in modern diets, celebrated for their benefits. Yet, amidst this wave of contemporary wellness practices lies a deep-seated connection to ancient traditions. Modern holistic wellness stems from roots in Ayurvedic practices that date back over 5,000 years. Despite the interruption during the British Raj, when Ayurveda was outlawed and schools were shut down, there has been a resurgence in returning to these foundational principles.

With its holistic approach to health, Ayurveda has long revered certain foods for their healing and nourishing properties, transcending time as integral components of contemporary wellness. These superfoods have been staples in Ayurvedic medicine for centuries, offering benefits that modern science and wellness trends are only beginning to validate. By understanding the rich heritage of Ayurvedic superfoods, we can appreciate the deep-rooted wisdom that continues to influence modern approaches to health.


Scientific Name: Phyllanthus emblica

This peridot green gooseberry, colloquially called amla, has gained widespread adoration for its benefits as a ‘superfruit’. This nutrient-dense berry contains high levels of vitamin C, perfect for boosting immune systems, rejuvenating the skin, and promoting bone as well as joint health. Taking just 100 grams of amla provides 300 mg of vitamin C, equivalent to the amount of vitamin received from 20 oranges. Found in most desi homes, add this superfruit to your daily juices, chutneys, or salads for that extra dose of rejuvenation.


Scientific Name: Withania somnifera

As a powerful adaptogen (substances are used in herbal medicine to stabilise physiological processes), Ashwagandha helps the body naturally maintain homeostasis. Its properties allow it to lower cortisol levels – reducing stress and anxiety – and improve memory and cognitive ability. Ashwagandha also boosts your energy and stamina, making it a fitting choice for athletes. Recent studies have shown that the plant can increase libido and improve sexual health in both men and women. In men, specifically, ashwagandha tablets are shown to boost testosterone and improve sperm quality, count, and motility.


Scientific Name: Moringa oleifera

Enriched with anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties, this leaf hails from an evergreen plant, often dubbed the ‘miracle tree’ for good reason. Renowned for its capacity to enhance gut health, combat foodborne bacterial infections, and reduce cholesterol levels, this superfood is valued in Ayurvedic medicine for its therapeutic benefits. Often taken in capsule form as a daily supplement or traditionally brewed as an herbal tea and syrup, Moringa is the perfect health companion to add to your daily diet, especially during flu season.


Scientific Name: Ocimum sanctum

Did you know your favourite street-side comfort food has a litany of healing properties? Tulsi or Kraphao is an herb that strengthens your immune system and can treat respiratory conditions like allergies, asthma, and bronchitis. Furthermore, tulsi has purifying qualities which can clear up acne and skin blemishes. Lastly, holy basil is also shown to help detoxify your liver – no wonder we crave kraphao gai after a night out. If fresh tulsi doesn’t suit your fancy, it can also be brewed into tea, ground into powder, or distilled into an essential oil.

We had the opportunity to interview community member Shre Sharma from Neeta’s Herbal, an Ayurvedic wellness brand focused on hair health and scalp care. A passionate advocate for Ayurvedic superfoods, Shre shared his thoughts on today’s wellness industry and why natural ingredients will always reign superior to chemical solutions:

“As a holistic wellness brand, we believe hair care is about getting back to your roots. Ayurveda, which uses ancient herbs to treat hair loss and other hair disorders, offers the most effective treatment for a healthy scalp and hair. The efficacy of these herbs and plants has been confirmed by medical science in recent years, but our civilisation has known their benefits for the last 5,000 years. Chemicals like minoxidil might help you regain your hair temporarily, but what happens when you stop? The hair loss often resumes even more rapidly, not to mention the side effects. In contrast, Ayurvedic herbs like amla holistically nurture your hair follicles, leading to progressive and sustainable growth. To further fortify your hair health, eat whole foods rich in magnesium and biotin. Regarding supplements, I would take ashwagandha for its DHT blocking and antioxidant properties – reducing hair thinning and balding.”

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