According to a nationwide survey run by Nairn’s Oatcakes, more than half of Kiwi consumers have bought something in the past 12 months because it was a supposed superfood.
The survey was conducted online with more than 700 people responding to questions about their thoughts on popular superfoods.
Turmeric was singled out with 33 percent saying it is the best-known superfood, followed by coconut (22 percent), oats (20 percent), blueberries (19 percent), Maca (13 percent) and avocado (10 percent). Interestingly, both kale and wheatgrass lagged behind with just 6.25 percent of people naming them as top superfoods.
There appeared to be some disagreement over whether superfoods are as healthy as they appear with only 21 percent saying that superfoods are scientifically proven to have health benefits. Fourteen percent were of the opinion that there are no proven benefits. Almost sixty percent replied that it depended on the food and that sometimes health claims could be supported with scientific studies.
Perceived health benefits included more energy (56 percent), mental alertness (56 percent), detoxification (50 percent), better skin (50 percent), anti-aging (43 percent) and weight loss (19 percent).
New Zealand spokesperson for Nairn’s, Jaimee Freeman, said: “We ran the survey as oats often seem to be one of the more underappreciated health foods and we were keen to understand how they stacked up perception-wise against the trendier superfoods. We were very pleased to see that oats held their own, even coming ahead of foods like kale and wheat germ.
“Hopefully, that means that awareness of oats as a natural health food is growing,” she adds. “It’s important to make an informed choice and opt for foods that have been proven to keep you healthy – regardless of whether they are the latest superfood or not.
“Oats are an easy win if you’re trying to eat foods which are as close to their natural state as possible. Oats are packed full of nutrients, vitamins and minerals and studies have shown them to have many benefits including helping to reduce cholesterol and keeping your gut healthy. Per 100g, wholegrain oats actually have 205 percent more fibre, 295 percent more protein and 225 percent more iron than kale. However, they’re still not as popular in New Zealand as they could be. We only consume 5 percent of the total global oat harvest.”
Nairn’s have used oats at the heart of all their products since 1896. Nairn’s Oatcakes, including Organic Superseeded Oatcakes, Scottish Rough Oatcakes, Mixed Berries Oat Biscuits, Stem Ginger Oat Biscuits, Fine Milled Oatcakes and Organic Oatcakes are available at Countdown, New World, Pack n Save and independent health food stores.