My clients and students always ask me what is one thing they can do to improve their health. Or which one food is the most important for a healthy diet. My answer is always GREENS! If there is any place to start – it is with greens. Most people do not eat enough green veggies. So no matter what your diet currently consists of – whether you are an omnivore, vegetarian, vegan, flexitarian (a little bit of this and a little bit of that), raw foodie – it doesn’t matter. Getting your greens in is the first step to optimal and long-lasting health.
Leafy green vegetables are one of nature’s richest sources of a full spectrum of nutrients. So look beyond spinach and broccoli and get familiar with things like kale, collards, swiss chard, arugula, bok choy.
Depending on what your taste buds are calling for, there are so many ways to get your green veggies in. The good news is that each green offers a very different unique taste and texture. Even if you have to sneak them into a smoothie for the fussy ones in the family, I promise you – there is always a way!
Whether you are following a vegan diet or just want to take your nutrition to the next level– greens should be an essential component to your day.
Choosing a leafy green such as kale:
- Helps to purify your blood, supports bone health and prevents the risk of many diseases such as heart disease and cancer
- Gives your body an extra dose of much needed calcium, magnesium, iron, antioxidants and fiber
- Compliments anything and everything on your plate and will boost the nutrients in any meal
- Is especially fantastic when it is just lightly steamed, sautéed or chopped up and marinated raw into a salad
- Makes a super healthy “chip” that is kid and adult friendly. Try this delicious zesty kale chip recipe!
These benefits apply to most greens so really, you can’t go wrong and the possibilities are endless.
It is very common to get overwhelmed when it comes to greens. My suggestion is to start basic. Pick one new green a week to “play” with until you have found a way for you and your family to enjoy it. The number one complaint is that greens are too bitter. Well, yes collards and kale can be bitter – especially if they are new to your palette. Once you find a way to get them into a meal – whether they are added to a smoothie, tomato sauce, chickpea stew, chunky vegetable soup, grain dish or simply dressed with olive oil and sea salt, there is no turning back. You will be hooked because you will suddenly start to feel better, have more energy and you may even lose weight. That doesn’t sound bad does it?
Experiment with natures emerald gems, have fun and make sure you get your greens in everyday. Just remember that a meal isn’t a meal unless there is something green on your plate! Try the Green Garden Veggie Pasta Salad recipe below. We’re making this recipe and many more green veggie-packed recipes at Simple Spring Creations on May 23rd and Green Goddess on June 10th.
Green Garden Veggie Pasta Salad
8-12 oz pasta (kaumt, spelt, Tinkyada brown rice or quinoa)
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1/2 cup sliced red onion1-2 yellow summer squash or zucchini, quartered lengthwise and cut into 1/2 inch chunks to equal 2 cups
2 garlic cloves, crushed or minced
1-2 cups washed and chopped chard or kale
10-12 spears of asparagus chopped
1 tablespoon finely minced chives
1/4 cup finely chopped Italian parsley
1/4 cup finely chopped fresh basil
Salt and pepper to taste
How It’s Made:
1. In a large stockpot, bring 4 quarts of water to a boil with 1 tablespoon of sea salt.
2. Meanwhile, in a medium skillet, heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil. Add onion and saute for 3 minutes. Add squash, asparagus and continue to cook for 5 more minutes. Add garlic and cook another 2 minutes. Turn off heat and set aside.
3. Cook pasta until al dente. Drain, place in a large, shallow serving bowl, and toss with remaining 2 tablespoons of olive oil, sauteed vegetables, chard and fresh herbs.
4. Season to taste with salt and pepper and serve immediately.
My favourite way to welcome spring is to lighten up my eating habits. As the weather gets warmer, as more local vegetables become available and as I spend more time outside, I crave lighter, colder, more refreshing meals. Instead of the soups, stews and grains that warmed me in the winter, opt for more green leafy vegetables, salads, smoothies, raw soups and juices. This not only results in simpler meals to prepare but I also feel lighter, more rejuvenated and more energized!
Here are 5 key ways to lighten up your meals this spring:
- Start adding more salads to your diet. Whether for lunch or dinner, grab a big bowl and fill it up with fresh local greens. Salads help eliminate toxins, increase energy and provide a balance to your body. Learn how to naturally balance your body at Acid/Alkaline Balance on June 20th.
- Drink your dinner. This isn’t ideal all the time. But some nights when I get home and don’t feel like making a meal or eating a heavy dinner, I just pull out my blender and make a yummy blended cold soup (see the deliciously refreshing recipe below).
- Change the ratios on your plate. This is the easiest way to lighten up while sparing your body extra calories. For example, instead of taking an extra serving of grain, add more veggies, either steamed or fresh. Learn how to give your body a spring cleanse with Marni’s best-selling eBook Cleansing with Superfoods.
- Use vegetables in place of grains. In the spring, it’s fun finding veggie alternatives to whole grains. For example, grind up cauliflower instead of rice or use kelp and Zucchini noodles for basic dishes or pasta recipes. Top this up with our fave Green Goddess Salad Dressing – we will be making this recipe and more Green recipes at Green Goddess on June 10th!
- Make juice. This is the easiest way to start lightening up in the spring. Making a tall glass of vegetable juice is an easy way to load up on nutrients instead of calories. You can learn how to make Super Alkaline Juices at Raw Essentials on June 3rd.
With the days lengthening, reach for foods like green vegetables that will hydrate and refresh you. To start, try this refreshing
Green Avocado Cucumber Soup.
What’s in it:
1 cucumber, peeled, seeded and roughly chopped
2 large ripe avocados
½ cup spinach or kale
2 green onions, roughly chopped
2 apples (crisp and tart apples like granny smith)
2-1/2 cups coconut milk or coconut water
2 Tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
Parsley for garnish
Optional additions: garlic, ginger, cayenne, dill
How it’s made:
- In a blender, process all ingredients until smooth. Chill until ready to serve and garnish with fresh herbs.
This article was originally written for Chatelaine.
I must admit, I do LOVE Vega products – it’s that simple! And when I heard about Vega’s new Vega One Bars I was keen to try their new creation! Of course I am a fan of making my own homemade protein bars or energy whenever I can. As you may or may not know, there are a lot of “really bad bars” out there that have many low quality and filler ingredients. But Vega knows what they are doing, and their products truly reflect that.
If you haven’t yet been acquainted with this delicious, nutrient dense bar, you’ll definitely want to try one (side note: see how you can score a free box of Vega One bars below). These bars are a power packed snack or meal replacement (if necessary) with all of the essential nutrients needed for optimal energy and nourishment and they are delicious too!
Everything I love about the Vega One Nutritional Shake is now conveniently packaged in the first ever, all-in-one nutrition bar. In addition to making a delicious Vega One Smoothie every morning…
…you can also have the convenience of grabbing and enjoying a Vega One Bar! These are perfect to put in your bag on the go or for traveling.
Each bar has a balanced combination of essential vitamins and minerals and antioxidants and contains:
- 15 grams of complete protein
- 6 grams of fiber
- 1.5 grams of Omega-3
- A full serving of greens
- 1 billion dairy-free probiotics per bar.
The Vega One Bar is gluten free and contains no artificial flavors, colors or sweeteners. It comes in three delicious flavours: Chocolate Almond, Chocolate Cherry and Double Chocolate flavors.
And to top it off, this nutritionally complete, plant-based bar is dipped in chocolate. =)
For a chance to win a box of these delicious bars, tell @NourishedFully and @VegaTeam how this bar will benefit you. Make sure to include the hashtag #VegaOneBar or #1ofaKind. The contest ends on April 17th!
And come sample the Vega One Bar at Weekday Meal Planning on April 15th!
Calcium is a very important subject for me so I was to learn that this month is calcium month! A hysterectomy, shortly after my second child was born pushed me into menopause at the age of 35. Along with this came an increased risk of osteoporosis, making bone health an important consideration in my diet. Like everyone else, I had grown up believing that eating my 2-3 servings of dairy a day was the healthy way to go. I never questioned the absurdity of consuming another species’ breast milk. Through my research and my experiences with Marni to date, I have learned that dairy actually impedes my goal of strong bones by contributing to an acidic body. When this happens the body will try to reinstate an alkaline state by leaching calcium from the bones.
So, where is a girl to get her calcium? I start several days a week with a hearty dose of calcium from a smoothie made with banana, organic berries, calcium rich kale and fortified almond milk. This is a favourite of my daughter’s as well. Trust me, you can not taste the kale. Adding some ground flax seed ups the calcium even more.
While there is a long list of veg-friendly calcium sources out there, two personal favourites are edamame and sesame seeds. Edamame pods are a popular snack in our household; steamed and tossed with a bit of EVOO, salt and pepper. I also add shelled edamame to quinoa dishes, pastas, and salads. Most things I cook are finished off with a healthy sprinkle of sesame seeds as well, adding flavour, texture, and giving the food a nice presentation.
I was happy to see these two ingredients front and centre at Marni’s Amazing Asian cooking class earlier this month. My two favourite recipes were the Nappa Cabbage Salad, and the Arame Soba Noodle Salad. I recreated both of these dishes at an Asian-themed pot luck this past weekend to great reviews. One of my reasons for wanting to win the Fully Nourished Lifestyle prize was to be an example to those around me. I find people can be pretty sceptical of vegan cooking, so it is very heartening to bring healthy vegan fare and have it be as well received as the meat and sugar-laden foods around them. Thanks Marni!
March is calcium month and there is no better time to clarify the myths of calcium and bone strength! Despite what dairy companies lead you to believe, building strong bones is a lot more complicated than consuming calcium. There are three misconceptions when it comes to dairy, calcium and bones.
1. Building strong, healthy bones depends only on calcium
2. Your calcium intake is the only thing that matters
3. Dairy is the only good source of calcium
Let’s clarify these myths one at a time:
Clarification #1 – Calcium + Vitamins Build Strong Bones
Bone development is influenced by a number of factors, including nutrition, exposure to sunlight, hormones, and physical exercise. There’s no denying that calcium is important for bone health but bones need more than just calcium to grow and stay strong. Other important sources include Vitamin C, Vitamin D, and Vitamin K.
Enjoy these foods that are bursting with calcium!
- Green Leafy Veggies – kale, chard, beet tops, collards, broccoli, Brussels sprouts, dandelion, mustard greens and bok choy.
- Root Veggies – parsnip, rutabaga, sweet potatoes, squash, okra.
- Nuts and Seeds – almonds, pine nuts, hemp seeds, sesame seeds.
- Beans, Legumes and Whole grains – kidney beans, black beans, quinoa and amaranth.
- Fermented and Organic Soy – Tofu, tempeh, miso and edamame.
- Sea vegetables include arame, nori, dulse, wakame and kombu. They can be found at your local health food store or in the condiment section of your grocery store. Another great place to look is at authentic Asian markets.
- Other: carob, tahini, almond butter, cocoa, goji berries, figs and molasses.
Clarification #2 – Importance of Calcium Absorption & Retention
As we just discussed, calcium-rich foods is one source that helps build strong bones. But what you may not realize is that calcium is for more than just your bones – almost every function in our body requires calcium. Many degenerative diseases such as osteoporosis among others are a result of poor quality supplementation and an imbalanced diet. Reaping the benefits of calcium is also about how much we’re able to absorb, and retain. Factors including our dietary habits, lifestyle, and aging process all contribute to calcium absorption and retention.
- Stress impacts normal digestion and can have a negative effect on calcium absorption.
- Age also impacts calcium absorption – on average, adults absorb approximately 20% less calcium than children.
- Protein increases calcium absorption and stimulates the production of hormones that promotes new bone formation.
Clarification #3 – Avoid Dairy as a Source of Calcium
People have grown to accept that you can only get your daily intake of calcium from conventional dairy and a calcium supplement. What you need to also focus on is whole food sources that are naturally loaded with calcium. These foods don’t contain dairy, but will provide your body with the calcium it requires to function in an easy-to-assimilate way along with a whole bunch of other minerals and nutrients that are vital to good health!
So skip the dairy, eat your greens, get some sunshine and exercise regularly and enjoy all of the health benefits of a whole, natural diet! For calcium-rich, plant-based recipe inspiration join us on March 18th for Veggin’ Comfortably where you will learn some delicious calcium-rich recipes and you will receive a free copy of Marni’s best-selling eBook Veggin’ Comfortably.
Try this calcium-rich treat — Carob Fig Frozen Fudge
What’s In It?
1 cup figs, soaked
1 1/2 cups filtered water
1 tablespoon pure vanilla
1/2-1 cup nut butter (almond or sunflower)
1/2-1 cup raw carob powder
1/2 cup Manitoba Harvest hemp seeds
How it’s Made:
1. Place the figs in a bowl and cover with water and soak for about an hour, until soft. Drain reserving liquid.
2. In a blender, blend the figs, and vanilla until smooth, slowly adding soaking water as needed to form a creamy consistency.
3. Transfer the fig mixture into a large bowl, add the nut butter, and stir to combine.
4. In a separate bowl, mix the carob and hemp seeds.
5. Gradually add the dry carob mixture into the wet fig mixture. Stir well. Press evenly into a 10 by 18 inch brownie pan, 1 inch thick and freeze until firm (about 3 hours).
6. To serve, cut into 1 inch squares.
It seems like more and more lately we keep hearing about superfoods. The question is, do you know what a superfood is and what qualifies it as a superfood?
What Are Superfoods?
Superfoods are a category of foods found in nature; they are superior sources of essential, super-power nutrients, nutrients we can’t make ourselves. They are the most powerful foods on the planet, and are powerhouses for the transformation to a slender, healthier you. If you are what you eat, why not be super?
Where Can I Find Them?
Superfoods can be found everywhere. You are likely using many of them already everyday. Not all superfoods come from exotic places like Costa Rica and Thailand – but many are right here in North America and can be found at your local health food store, grocery store or farmer’s market.
Everyday foods such as kale, quinoa, sweet potatoes, blueberries, and raw honey are amazing superfoods to start with. If you want to get exotic – include superfoods such as nori seaweed, cacao, goji berries, maca, Maqui, and mesquite as well.
Superfoods Also Include:
- Raw foods – (food not heated above 48 degrees Celsius or 120 degrees Fahrenheit),
- High enzyme foods - (foods that easily break themselves down are easier on our digestive system, such as mangoes, pineapple, papaya and avocados)
- Organic foods - (foods grown without pesticides, herbicides, and chemicals)
- Fresh, local foods (visit local farmers markets and taste the difference that local foods make!)
When Choosing Your Superfoods:
Look for foods with a variety of colour, texture, flavour and shapes. This makes your meals and snacks exciting! No one wants a boring meal that doesn’t taste good.
Focus on high nutrient-dense foods over low calories. Calories don’t determine how many vitamins, minerals, enzymes or overall nutrients are in a food item. Superfoods have concentrated nutrients (protein, carbohydrates and fats) and provide so much nutrition in every bite. It’s also important to get away from focusing on calories all the time. It can become obsessive and you may loose sight of actually consuming good quality food!
They make you happy! They help you to actually lose weight because you will be eating foods that satisfy and satiate, rather than make you crave other foods! Your cells become saturated with nutrition. Plus:
- They give you energy
- They help your body to detoxify
- They give you mental clarity
- They promote activity and weight loss
- They improve immunity
- They clear and brighten your skin
If you want a FREE spot in this class see details here!
Superfood Power Balls
What’s in it?
1/2 cup pumpkin seeds
1/2 cup sunflower seeds
2 tbsp hemp seeds
1 cup chopped dates
1/4 cup goji berries
2 tbsp cacao nibs or cocoa powder
1 tbsp raw honey or coconut nectar
1/2 tsp vanilla powder
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp sea salt
2 tbsp Sun Warrior Protein Powder (Use code MW007 when checking out at RAW ELEMENTS for 5% discount)
How it’s made!
Place all the ingredients into the bowl of a food processor and pulse until you get a thick “doughy” consistency. Roll into bite size balls for quick power bites –perfect for your purse or a midday snack or after a workout.
What are your favourite Superfoods?
Make it organic! Or else you may as well not drink juice at all. When you juice conventional vegetables you are likely absorbing all the pesticides, herbicides, fungicides or genetically modified organism (GMO) stored in them. Because juices are so concentrated your body will soak up those chemicals immediately. Especially if you are doing a cleanse, this is crucial! I know you may be thinking, isn’t just drinking juice in general better than no juice at all? Well, there is something to be said about that, as it’s better than most people are drinking daily (soda, sugared coffees and pasteurized juice). However if you are making the effort to enhance your health, then you may as well go the full length and do it right!
If you’re not sold on juicing yet, here are some of the main benefits…
- It helps your body absorb the nutrients from the vegetables/fruits. Many individuals have difficulty digesting certain foods. As a result, the body doesn’t absorb all of the nutrients that the food provides. Juicing helps to “pre digest” the food for you, making it easier for your body to receive and absorb all of the nutrients.
- Juicing helps you increase your consumption of fruits and vegetables. Many individuals do not get enough fruits and vegetables throughout the day. Juicing allows you to obtain all of the beneficial nutrients in a quick and timely fashion.
- Juicing helps to broaden your intake of various fruits and vegetables. It is easy to stick to the same fruits and vegetables day in and day out. But it is important to rotate your intake of various foods to get the full spectrum of nutrients.
- It helps to improve your health and sustain a nutritious raw lifestyle. Eating a high percentage of raw fruits and vegetables contributes to high energy levels and faster recovery from illness…as well as a slower aging process.
- You are able to obtain all of the beneficial enzymes found in the produce, which is important for metabolism.
- The body receives a sufficient amount of phytochemicals, which help it to fight disease.
- Juicing provides the body with a high concentration of antioxidants, which help to combat free radicals.
- They are rich in vitamins and minerals and help to hydrate the body
- Juicing is a live liquid supplementation. Greater benefits than taking synthetic supplementation.
- There are lots of options when it comes to juice, play with different combinations!
Problems with buying store bought juices:
- Juice in bottles is often pasteurized. This means it is heated to at least 145*F/62*C to make it shelf stable, thus deactivating the beneficial enzymes.
- Plastic packaging contains “leachables” or some sort of chemical component that ends up in the juice.
- Plastic is harmful to the environment as it contributes to pollution, affects wildlife, and ultimately ends up in the food chain.
Juice delivery cleanses:
In terms of juice delivery services, you need to ask yourself a few questions. How fresh is the juice? Are these companies adding in any preservatives to make the juice last longer? Are they using completely organic ingredients? Storing the juice in plastic bottles? It is hard to know. That is why it is best to juice your own fruits and vegetables. If you can’t get organic produce, wash thoroughly with a vegetable wash, peel and avoid anything that is known to be heavily sprayed (strawberries, blueberries, bell peppers , etc.) or cannot be peeled (like berries).
However, one company in Toronto in particular is just quite a few steps above the rest and that’s Belmonte Raw. The owner, and my friend, Carol Belmont, strictly adheres to healthy, organic and environmentally friendly principles.
I will be doing her 5 day juice cleanse next week. So if anyone wants to join me and share their experience on Facebook or Twitter (@marniwasserman), or if you’ve already done one, please share your experience!
Looking for other inspiration to get started on cleansing?
It seems of lately that more and more we’ve been hearing about raw foods. Which leads me to say that adding more of them into your diet is absolutely a great way to boost your health. Incorporating raw foods into your everyday eating means focusing on fresh fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds, and sprouts. With these foods as the foundation of your diet, you will have more energy, lose weight and feel fantastic, as they’re loaded with enzymes, vitamins, and nutrients.
But it’s not about becoming 100% raw and following strict guidelines – it’s just about eating better and getting some pure, clean, and fresh foods into your body. Even if half of your meals each day consist of raw food, you’re on the right track. Your entire meal doesn’t have to be raw; simply enjoy a cooked meal along with a salad or a fresh juice.
My advice: don’t get too caught up with the details. Just start simply by adding more “raw” foods into your meals.
Here are a few ways to get started + a delicious recipe!
- Have at least a serving or more of fresh fruit everyday. This can include an apple, pear, orange, berries or a fresh fruit smoothie
- Have multiple servings of fresh vegetables everyday – cut up carrots, celery, peppers, a large dark leafy green salad or a fresh pressed green juice.
- Enjoy a handful (or two) of raw organic nuts and seeds. Put them into a trail mix with raisins, goji berries, apricots – and you can even add some pure raw dark chocolate (cacao) into the mix
- Grab a bag of fresh sunflower or pea sprouts from your local health food store or farmers market. These make a great addition to salads, sandwiches, soups, stir fry’s and smoothies
- Get creative and try to prepare a few new raw recipes each week including smoothies, raw nori rolls, cookies and nut based spreads
If you’re thinking about reaping the benefits of incorporating more raw foods into your lifestyle and need a little professional help along the way, join me for a Raw Made Easy cooking class on May 16th. I will be showing you easy and impressive ways to prepare delicious, raw foods.
Almond Basil Pesto
A delicious spread to enjoy with raw bread, flatbread, and crackers or served with crunchy raw veggies, kelp noodles or shredded zucchini!
2 tbsp torn fresh basil
1 tbsp chopped parsley
1 cup whole almonds, soaked overnight or for 8 hours
½ cup pine nuts
2 tbsp lemon juice
1 garlic clove
¼ cup olive oil (or more) for a creamier consistency
- Place all ingredients in food processor and blend until smooth
- Place in a small bowl and refrigerate
- Serve with cucumber slices, zucchini noodles, carrots, whole grain or raw crackers or brown rice pasta/kelp noodles or steamed vegetables
“Go Green” – we’re hearing this more than ever right now. Naturally, some of us think of hippie, tree hugging health nuts, sipping on green concoctions. (Actually, to be fair, with the right ingredients those weird looking green concoctions can actually be quite tasty, but that’s another topic for another day!)
Believe it or not, “going green” isn’t just about being “earthy”, and opting for extreme diet enhancements. Going green is a lifestyle that each person can take part in, simply by making some basic changes. You don’t have to be “extreme” to do something green. Making some alterations to your everyday routine can help you become a more eco-conscious individual and consumer.
If you want to be more green, both for the benefit of the environment and your body, then here are just a few tips:
1. Turn off the water while brushing your teeth, and the lights when you leave a room.
These are a few habits I’ve gotten myself into when it comes to conserving water and energy. While it might seem super easy to look past these rules, it’s also super important to follow them. Always remember that a little bit goes a long, long way.
2. Opt for natural and organic skin care products
As a strong believer in healthy skincare, I avoid the drug store brands, and turn to food grade products that I know are safe on my skin. These products can be found at your local health food store. (Or, you can try the ‘Salad for your Skin Green Cream’ that everyone’s been raving about!)
3. Ditch your Styrofoam and plastic lunch containers for glass
Okay, so it might be heavier than the plastic Ziplocs you’re used to carrying in your lunch box. But if you’re someone that is out and about almost all the time, you want to preserve your packed lunch to the best of your abilities. Storing your food in glass containers will keep your food fresh, and prevent it from leaking. I like the comfort of knowing that my containers are tried, tested, and true.
4. Opt for organic linens and cottons
As a green-conscious consumer, I don’t ignore any aspect of my daily routine. While you may or may not realize, there are tons of chemicals and bleaches on the materials you use everyday. Go green when it comes to the bed you sleep on at night, the clothing you put on in the morning, and the napkins you use at the breakfast table. By opting for 100% organic or bamboo cottons and linens, your mind and body will feel as pure as your values.
5. Go green in the garden
I know it seems like a long shot, but believe it or not, growing your own veggies will save you money, time, and rotten veggies in the refrigerator. Once a year, Young Urban Farmers comes to plant my own personal garden, leaving me with fresh veggies from May until December. Getting your own garden can be done with a box above the ground, or having herb plants in the backyard. Simple, efficient, and delectable!
While I’ve given you five of my personal favorites, it’s up to you to make green alterations that will suit your own lifestyle. Although you may not be able to implement all 5 of these tips, always remember that every small change goes a long way, so start small and build your way up. (Oh, and if you’re still thinking about that green concoction, then here’s the recipe! http://bit.ly/JpRJer
It’s that time of year again when seeing the sun come out from behind the clouds makes me want to be outside. I want to play, and I want to get fit!
The question that’s always asked of me though, especially because I’m active and vegan, is how I have enough energy to get through my days and my workouts? Well, I simply say that I have the perfect solution: plant-based foods. Not only are they filled with the most highly nutritious and bio-available vitamins and minerals, but they taste great too.
Plant based foods provide all of the macronutrients (proteins, carbohydrates, and fats) essential in maintaining optimal energy. Since working out causes physical stress, it creates acidity in the body. In order to regain a state of alkalinity, it’s essential to neutralize the body by consuming a plant-based diet filled with neutralizing plant-based foods.
My top sources of energy foods:
- Hemp Seeds – contains omega 3 fats and provides long sustaining energy. I love to put them on salads, in smoothies and cereal.
- Chia seeds – are loaded with fiber and expand when soaked. Chia makes the most delicious morning porridge. Amazing for before my workouts.
- Kale - is a green leafy powerhouse veggie. It is loaded with magnesium and is alkaline forming. Chopped up in a raw salad or steamed on the side of quinoa, kale completes any plate.
- Sea vegetables – storing a wide range of trace minerals and nutrients, sea vegetables provide natural sodium to the diet. My favourite sea vegetable is arame or nori – they give me mental clarity and focus.
- Tempeh – one of the highest sources of plant protein, is fermented, and is easy to digest. I love marinating tempeh with cider vinegar, lemon juice and coconut oil for a boost to my salads and wraps.
- Coconut water and coconut oil – coconut water replenishes the body with much needed electrolytes. So when I am working out, this is my go to beverage. Coconut oil – is loaded with medium chain fats, so they are a quick source of energy and nourishment before and after activity.
- Quinoa - contains all of the essential amino acids which are crucial building blocks for protein. Protein builds muscle, so it is important to consume protein especially after a workout.
- Goji berries – are a natural source of antioxidants, protein and fiber. They are perfect in a trail mix before a workout or great tossed in a smoothie after a workout.
- Cacao – one of nature’s richest sources of magnesium. Gives me a natural boost of energy. Cacao gives me the perfect excuse to have chocolate for breakfast. Tossed in a smoothie or cereal it adds the perfect crunch and kick!
- Honey – loaded with enzymes, antibacterial and antimicrobial properties honey is soothing and easy to take down. It is a natural source of sugar and calories so it makes a perfect addition to my pre workout snack and it also gives me that extra boost of energy.
These are the foods that I reach to when I want to get moving, and I highly suggest them to anyone who hasn’t tried them yet. I know my body’s going to use them well and efficiently, and give me that boost of energy without causing me to crash and burn out. They are sustaining, nourishing, and versatile enough that I can consume them daily in multiple ways without ever getting bored of them.
To learn more ways to fuel your workouts, join us for our Fit and Fabulous cooking class on May 21st where we will be making homemade energy bars, happy hemp loaves and liquid nutrition smoothies that will help take your body and fitness goals to the next level!