What even is that?


Woohoo, it’s almost Christmas! Which means my last post for a couple of weeks – I’m sure you all have better things to be doing than reading them so I’ll give us all some time off!

I’ve been busy preparing my recipe e-book which will be given to clients in my 1 Month Kickstart programme which starts in January. The recipes are all easy and ingredients readily available but some have an optional added boost with lesser known ingredients so I thought I’d talk a little about a few of these as I remember not knowing what these were or where to find them!

There is a wealth of info on the internet so I’m not going to go into great detail about each one, but at least when you see it on a recipe you’ll have a better idea…

5 ingredients

Chia Seeds

Tiny nutritious seeds that really pack a punch! They’re funny little things that form a gel like coating when wet. They come from a flowering plant of the mint family and are high in Omega 3, B vitamins and minerals. What’s more they are a great source of protein and fibre and contain all 9 essential amino acids. They don’t really have a taste so are perfect for adding to favourite recipes to reap the nutritional benefits without spoiling the flavour.

Kale

A green or purple leafy vegetable and a member of the cabbage family. Some varieties have smooth leaves and others have curly shaped ones.

Kale boasts high levels of vitamins and minerals and contains very little fat, and that which is does have is mostly comprised of a good omega-3 fatty acid. It is commonly considered among the most nutrient dense foods in existence! It’s a really versatile veg but I particularly love mixing it up in a smoothie or making kale crisps. See recipe.

Goji Berries

Considered a fruit and a herb and has been used in Chinese medicine for thousands of years. Another food considered one of the most nutritionally dense in existence.

They are most commonly found in dry form which makes a great snack just as they come or added as a breakfast topping for example, but they are also eaten fresh or cooked.

Goji berries are full of anti-oxidants, are low in calories, fat-free and packed with fibre. Although the fantastic nutritional value is known, researchers are still in the early days of understanding which illnesses/disease are specifically helped by these colourful little berries.

Nutritional Yeast

Doesn’t sound very appealing I know, but nutritional yeast is very popular with vegans and anyone following an no-dairy diet – they are small flakes that look a bit like oats.

Packed with nutrients particularly B-vitamins, folic acid, selenium, zinc, and protein. Low in fat, gluten-free (but check the packet), and contains no added sugars or preservatives.

Especially loved by vegans for its B12 value as this isn’t found in natural plant sources but it is just as popular for its flavour. It is just about the only food that offers the cheesy taste that non cheese eaters miss, and so is commonly used in sauces or as a topping.

Chlorella

A powder, tablet or granules providing a protein boost and as well as amino acids, vitamins and minerals. It comes from fresh water algae grown in the Far East.

Benefits include detoxing, supporting immune system, assisting weight loss, preventing cancer, balancing blood sugar & cholesterol levels.

Spirulina

Like Chlorella, Spirulina comes in a powder, tablet or granules form. It is derived from algae and is commonly used around the world to treat and prevent illness. High in protein, vitamins and minerals.

Benefits include helping to regulate blood pressure, cholesterol levels as well as reducing stroke and cancer risk

As with any supplements/powders, be sure to buy good quality to avoid any toxic substances that can have an adverse effect over a period of time.

 

Where do I buy these?

I know all of these with kale possibly being an exception as I didn’t check, were found in the bio stores that I talked about in my blog post ‘A spot of retail therapy’, though you may find them in larger supermarkets. Kale is usually available in Grand Frais outlets.

Important note: If you are on medication I recommend you Google these for more details and/or consult your doctor as some of these foods may not be compatible.

I hope it has been helpful to those of you who weren’t familiar with these powerful delights.

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Before I sign off, I want to share a tip for your Christmas Brussels Sprouts – I can’t get enough of these right now! Prepare them by slicing off the end and removing any damaged leaves. Pop them (still raw) in an oven proof dish and lightly drizzle with olive oil and soy sauce. Roast for approx 20 mins… seriously, I’ve never enjoyed them so much!

And finally, I still have places for January’s 1 Month Kickstart coaching programme, but there’s only a few available so book quickly to get your discounted spot! The programme can also be offered as a gift – simply get in touch and I’ll send you a gift voucher that can be given for Christmas or any other event.

I wish you and your loved ones a very happy Christmas and may all your healthy dreams come true in 2016!