London (AFP) - Made out of pig's blood, pork fat and oatmeal, black pudding might seem an unlikely candidate for the shelves of Britain's health food aisles.
But the breakfast staple, considered a delicacy in northwest England and the west Midlands, is the surprise inclusion on a list of superfoods to watch in 2016 produced by MuscleFood, a nutritional food retailer.
The crumbly blood sausage, traditionally served with hearty favourites like bacon and fried egg, contains high levels of protein, iron, calcium and zinc.
"2015 saw healthy eating reach a new level and this year we predict this trend is only going to get bigger," British media quoted Darren Beale of MuscleFood as saying.
"It's been interesting to note how people are changing their habits depending on the new buzz words in clean eating.
"Some of the foods have been on the up for a while like avocado oil and maca root, but others like mushrooms and black pudding have been a total surprise to us."
But some experts have already cast doubt on the claim.
The Institute of Food Research told The Independent newspaper that it tried to avoid using the term "superfood", instead advocating a balanced diet.
It also said that black pudding generally contained up to 20 percent fat and had relatively high levels of calories and salt.
Last year, the World Health Organisation warned that sausages, ham and other processed meats cause bowel cancer.