Cancer Council Queensland health guru, Katie Clift, shares five superfoods that are super for your health and happiness.

Superfoods, by definition, are nutrient-rich foods considered to be especially beneficial for your health and wellbeing.

A well-balanced diet, rich in superfoods, will ensure you get the antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals you need to stay feeling energised, healthy and happy.

They are readily available, delicious and affordable.

Here are my top five tips:

1. Quinoa

This protein-rich grain contains all the essential amino acids that your body needs to repair itself. With twice the protein content of rice, quinoa is also high in fibre, gluten free and a very good source of B-vitamins, calcium, magnesium and manganese. It is easy to cook, tasty and adaptable. Add half a cup into your favourite salad, stir through a breakfast smoothie or a bowl of oats, or include in protein balls.

2. Broccoli

This leafy vegetable is a perfect staple to add to your diet. Green vegetables like broccoli contain a range of phytochemicals to help benefit the immune system and reduce inflammation. They are also high in fibre, folate, vitamin A, C and K. Steam your broccoli lightly for a healthy addition to any meal or add raw florets to salads.

3. Blueberries

A nutritional powerhouse whether eaten fresh or frozen. Blueberries are very low in kilojoules, but high in all the right nutrients and antioxidants. Research shows antioxidants found in berries help protect our bodies from sickness and reduce oxidative stress. Just a handful of these delicious berries will leave your body feeling energised.

4. Chickpeas

As part of the legume family, chickpeas are widely used in culinary dishes around the globe. From being the core ingredient in hummus, to a tasty addition in salad, these little peas are rich in nutrients. Chickpeas are an excellent source of vitamin B6, folate, fibre, protein, thiamine and potassium. The proteins in chickpeas, on average, are of higher nutritive value than those of other grain legumes. For a gold coin, a can of chickpeas is worth adding to your weekly shopping list.

5. Spinach

Long established as a highly-nutritional food, spinach and silverbeet are particularly high in fibre, iron, folate and magnesium. Compared to other vegetables, these leafy greens are also high in vitamin K, which is essential for a healthy circulatory system. Research shows spinach also contains cancer-fighting properties and boosts brain power. A standard serve is one cup of raw leafy green, or half a cup if it’s cooked.

For a nutrient-rich diet, fill you plate with superfoods like wholegrains, lean meats, proteins, low-fat dairy products, fruit and vegetables – all of which are low in sugar, salt and additives.

To help you feel healthy and happy, supercharge your diet. Your body will thank you for it!

For more info about Cancer Council Queensland and nutrition, visit cancerqld.org.au.