Fuel Yourself Friday – Flaxseed

These guys are tiny but mighty! High in Omega-3 fatty acid, these “good” fats that have been shown to have heart-healthy effects. Each tablespoon of ground flaxseed contains about 1.8 grams of plant omega-3s. They are full of lignans, which have both plant estrogen and antioxidant qualities. Flaxseed contains 75 to 800 times more lignans than other plant foods.

They are one of the sources of protein found in my Shakeology, and I also put ground flaxseed on my Greek Yogurt and berries preworkout – who doesn’t love a little extra boost of clean protein?!

Whole Foods Wednesday – Zucchini

Who likes zucchini? I love it, and its pretty versatile too! We have used it as a base for taco boats, sautéed them, grilled them, and even grown them! Love Zucchini!

Do you know why Zucchini is so widely revered?

Here is a sampling of why!

  • Zucchini is 95% water, low in calories, and high in fiber
  • It’s a good source of Vitamin C, a powerful antioxidant which plays a huge role in keeping your immune system healthy, and aids in fighting respiratory problems. The anti-inflammatory properties help keep your lungs open and clear.
  • The high fiber content also helps lower your cholesterol.
  • It’s good for your heart! Zucchini contains good amounts of potassium that helps reduce blood pressure, and the magnesium content helps keep blood pressure at a steady rhythm.

Oh, and good news for my fellow Diabetics! The abundance of Vitamin B in zucchini benefits us by breaking down the sugar in our bodies, and the fiber and pectin are vital in regulating our blood sugar levels!

In other words, eat more zucchini! 🙂

 

Whole Foods Wednesday – Winter Squash

There’s a reason your mama was always trying to get you to eat squash – it’sSO good for you! Winter squash has long been recognized as an important food source of carotenoids, but also has antioxidant support, anti inflammatory benefits, and potential blood sugar regulation benefits.

Winter squash is labeled low on the Glycemic index. Many of the carbs in winter starch come from polysaccharides found in the cell walls. Research has shown other nutrients found in winter squash are beneficial for blood sugar control. These nutrients include the B-vitamin like compound d-chiro-inositol, a nutrient we expect to hear more about with regards to blood sugar regulation.

It’s hearty, versatile, and there are tons of varieties – go get your squash on!

squash-just-pic-no-info

 

 

Thirsty Thursday – GT’s Synergy Organic Kombucha

Have you ever had Kombucha? Being that I don’t usually drink much other than water, iced coffee and Shakeology (and of course sangria and beers when the urge strikes!), it was never really on my radar but a fellow Coach of mine talked about it enough to pique my curiosity, so I decided to give it a try and see what the buzz is all about!

Tasted good, I have always loved tea so I was expecting I would like it… It tasted good, slightly sweet but nothing jarring… 4 grams of Sugar and 14 grams of Carbs in the whole bottle isn’t too bad, especially because I only do a few sips here and there, not the whole bottle at once.

One of the reasons I like it so much is that Kombucha is extraordinarily rich in antioxidants, and you are all very aware of the benefits of antioxidants for boosting your immune system and energy levels!

Extra bonus: helps detoxify which is helpful after a long weekend of adult beverages (yep, still feeling the effects of that!)

Kombucha

 

Whole Foods Wednesday – Peas

Who likes peas? Did your mom used to have to bribe you to eat them? Does she still?!

No but seriously, these tiny green dudes pack quite a punch here…

Peas

I think they taste delicious but I have always been fond of vegetables, and I recognize that not everyone feels the same way. But peas are one of those wonderful little powerhouses, packed with all sorts of goodness. Worth finding a way you enjoy eating them, in my opinion!

What’s your stance on the little balls of green? Yay or nay?

Whole Foods Wednesday – Ginger

Who’s a fan of Ginger?

Ginger

Ginger has a long history of being used as a healing agent. It is a potent anti-inflammatory agent that can help reduce the pain, anti-viral, helps boost your immune system, reduces muscle soreness, soothes your stomach, and so much more!

It is one of nature’s best medicines, and a great way to calm indigestion or reduce stomach pain, reduce inflammation, reduce Cholesterol, and help improve cognitive function.

Because ginger is a natural antioxidant, it can help reduce inflammation that can break down the immune system in the body and leave it open to attack or trigger diseases people are genetically predisposed to.

It contains a lot of essential minerals and healthy vitamins, and is very nutrient dense!

Also, and this is all still relatively new research, so take it with a grain of salt, but preliminary studies show that Ginger  may have powerful anti-diabetic properties.

In a recent 2015 study of 41 participants with type 2 diabetes, 2 grams of ginger powder per day lowered fasting blood sugar by 12% (11)

It also dramatically improved Hb1Ac leading to a 10% reduction over a period of 12 weeks. (Source: Authority Nutrition)

My husband and I like to cook with Ginger – it adds a lot of flavor! I didn’t actually know it was such a powerful component, but all of this makes me super happy, because who doesn’t love to hear that something they regularly use contains so many healing/helpful properties!? I know as a kid, when I was sick, I prefered Ginger Ale, but I never knew all of these benefits!

Do you cook with Ginger?

 

Superfood Saturday – Coffee Fruit

Ahhh… we all know about coffee, but did you know it’s actually a fruit? Today’s Superfood Spotlight is inspired by the newest flavor of Shakeology – Cafe Latte!

Coffee Fruit

Confession: I did not know coffee was a fruit, at all. The beauty of this world is you learn something new every day! 🙂

Have you ever had coffee fruit? I’ve had bajillions of coffee beans, but other than my Shakeology, I can’t say I have had coffee fruit.

Superfood Saturday – Cacao

You’ve likely heard of cacao, especially if you are into baking. Cacao is preferred over cocoa by lots of bakers because its the purest form of chocolate you can consume, much less so than cocoa/cocoa powder.

It lends its rich chocolate taste without the added sugars (and fats!) of chocolate chips.

Cacao

Both cacao and cocoa are highly nutritious. If you want more nutrients, cacao is a better choice than cocoa.

Cacao also contains the mood improver, anandamide, also known as the ‘bliss molecule’, which creates a feeling of euphoria. If you are craving chocolate taste but want to minimize the effects, cacao is the healthier choice!

Do you like cacao? Do you use it often?