Superfoods have become extremely popular in the last few years as a healthy part of a balanced diet. Emerging as a new trend, superfoods have made their way to the marketing community, the super market shelves and our own cupboards.
But what if we told you that most superfoods originate from ancient Greece and continue to add value to the Mediterranean diet up until now. Let us introduce you to 10 of the most popular superfoods that you will find at any Greek home, restaurant or tavern.
1. Mastic from Chios
Its shoots have been used as an appetizer, its tears or else mastic resin were used to freshen the breath and clean the teeth. Mastic’s antioxidant extracts work against atherosclerotic plaque while its polyphenols are proven to reduce cholesterol levels. It also exhibits an anti-inflammatory action and helps in digestion, it functions as an analgesic, an appetite stimulant, a diuretic, a cough suppressant and an aphrodisiac.
2. Olives & Olive Oil
Produced in several parts of Greece, olives and olive oil protect against heart disease, strokes, heart attacks, breast cancer, colorectal cancer and stomach ulcers.
3. Krokos Kozanis
Krokos Kozanis is a natural antidepressant, it helps to balance your weight and protects against cancer, Alzheimer and cardiovascular diseases.
4. Fish Roe from Missolonghi
It contains valuable Omega-3 fatty acids that play a crucial role in the development of the brain, it boosts the immune system, it has antithrombotic action and prevents cardiovascular diseases and cancer.
5. Mountain Tea
It has antimicrobial and antioxidant properties, protects against osteoporosis and Alzheimer’s disease.
It works as an antioxidant enhancing the immune system.
7. Thyme Honey
Besides its exquisite taste, thyme is known for its anti-bacterial and anti-cancer activity.
8. Corinthian Raisin
Used in several Greek desserts, the Corinthian raisin has anti-cancer and antihypertensive properties.
9. Santorinian Fava
Santorini’s local fava is high in fiber and works well against cholesterol and functions well with the digestive system. It is also a good source of phosphorus, copper, vitamin B1, iron, potassium and magnesium.
10. Dried Figs
Dried figs are rich in natural fiber, potassium, magnesium and calcium. They help control your weight and blood pressure, enhance the function of the nervous system, the metabolism and increase bone health.
There are many more popular superfoods in the Greek land such as almonds, pistachios, dictamus, krano, pomegranate, oregano and sage along with other herbs and spices that have contributed in the beneficial properties of the Mediterranean diet.
So, next time you visit Greece make sure you slip more Greek superfoods into your diet!