Four Forgotten Superfoods: PART FOUR

We've already explored three different superfoods that you ate as a kid, or your parents and grandparents used to eat. We've talked about the benefits of eating liver, nutritional yeast, and wheat germ. Today's superfood is equally awesome and equally neglected by most people, even those looking to improve their diets.

Why? I have no idea. I love sardines.

Yes, those tiny fishes that come in a can. Sardines are easy on the wallet, convenient and portable, sustainable, and safe. While many larger species of fish are becoming depleted, sardines are still thriving in our oceans. They are mercury-free, while many bigger fish, like tuna and swordfish, are becoming more and more polluted.

You can find sardines at most grocery stores. They come in mustard, olive oil, tomato sauce, and just plain water. (I've also seen them in soybean oil which I try to avoid.)

Sardines are a great source of high quality protein. A single 3-ounce can contains about 23 grams of protein. Also high in omega-3 fatty acids, they give us the kind of fat we need most. (Our processed food diet is usually too high in omega-6--which comes from seed oils like canola--while we tend to lack omega-3 which comes from fatty fish.) Sardines also contain plenty of calcium and phosphorus; both are vital for strong bones and teeth.

What to do with those tiny fishes? If you like tuna salad, just mash up a couple of cans of sardines along with your tuna. You won't be able to taste the difference. If you're feeling more adventurous, throw a can of sardines on top of your Caesar salad, along with a homemade dressing featuring anchovies. You can also try them on top of pasta with plenty of garlic and olive oil, or in a rice bowl along with veggies and soy sauce. Sardines are very versatile!

I hope you have enjoyed this series on forgotten superfoods. Maybe I've inspired you to try something new? Or possibly to return to a food you ate years ago? These forgotten superfoods are definitely worth remembering!