Did you know that there’s lots of superfood you can find on almost every Bangkok soi?
In this article we’re doing the exact opposite and reveal 5 Thai super foods you can find almost anywhere in Thailand that you never eat, but should.
1. Chicken feet (teen gai)
You wouldn't want to take your partner for a valentine's day dinner for a bowl of chicken feet soup.
Arguably one of the most un-aesthetically pleasing dishes in Thailand to look at, chicken feet are extremely healthy and packed full of goodies that are difficult to find in most other foods.
One of the goodies being collagen, a protein that is vital to keeping your skin elastic and aids in creating new skin cells faster.
They are also high in zinc, copper and calcium, which is great for improving your immune system and keeping your nails strong.
* Paleo Tip: Chicken feet in Thailand is typical boiled or deep-fried, always go for boiled when you have the choice.
Seaweed has been dubbed a 'superfood' and is another amazing power food that you probably almost never eat (dried seaweed from the 7-Eleven doesn't count).
Seaweed is packed with vitamin B12, fiber and iodine. Studies reveal that around 40% of the world's population are at risk of iodine deficiency, which can lead to future health problems in young children.
3. Beef Liver
Did you know that beef liver contains a much greater micronutrient content than apples and carrots?
This isn't to say you need to stop eating fruit, as they are rich in phytonutrients which aren't found in meat. Beef liver asides from being a quality protein source, is the world's most concentrated source of vitamin A.
You can find beef liver all over Thailand, they are sold by street vendors in noodles and grilled over charcoal on skewers.
We sell pasture-fed beef liver which is antibiotic and synthetic growth hormone-free from Australia.
* Paleo Tip: if you ever find yourself in the Arctic, avoid eating polar bear liver. Their liver is so rich in nutrients that humans have overdosed eating it. But don't worry, beef liver is perfectly fine and will turn you into a superhero in no time.
4. Bugs, insects and other scary looking things
Yes, you most likely saw this coming before you even clicked open this article. You only need to have watched a nature survival show to know that eating bugs, insects and worms are a great source of protein and vitamins.
Talk a walk down Koh San Road or several side sois and you'll see a friendly vendor selling all types of bugs and insects. In Thailand you'll typically find:
2. Water bugs
4. Silk worms
5. Bamboo worms
6. Red ants
Bugs and insects look a lot worse than they taste.
All are packed full of protein and healthy vitamins and minerals making them the perfect lunchtime snack,or a replacement for chips or popcorn at the movies.
* Paleo tip: While an awesome protein punch, most bugs in Thailand are deep-fried in low quality oils. Always choose boiled or charcoaled bugs over fried.
Unlike the other 4 super foods listed, snails in healthy Thai food are a lot harder to find in street food or restaurants.
If you feel like you don't eat enough wild-fish in your diet, snails are rich in omega-3 and a great substitute. They contain 16.1g of protein per 100 grams, are loaded with magnesium and selenium which improve your body's bones and fight against cell damage.
Thai jungle curry is often served with snails so be sure to order it next time you see it on the menu.
* Paleo tip: Numerous wet markets in Bangkok sell sea snails, the most popular one being Khlong Toey market in Rama IV.
Will you be eating any of these superfoods?
If you can get over how some of these foods look, they are all delicious, extremely healthy and very, very cheap.
Eating healthy in Thailand doesn't have to be expensive, adding a few of these Thai super foods to your diet will certainly improve your body's immune system and overall health.
We recommend starting with beef liver and seaweed to ease your way into Thai superfoods, they are both on the eyes and even better on the taste buds.