I thought I would use today’s blog post to speak a little on my own eating practices, dum dum duuuuuum!! Food is after all quite a heated topic of debate and has been known to evoke some very intense emotional responses, which is why I generally tend to avoid them. Plus, everyone is a nutrition expert, right?
It’s no secret that I’m big into plant-based foods. I mean, connecting to unprocessed foods that haven’t been tampered with and which contain all the intelligence of the natural world, interacting positively with my DNA… Well, it makes me feel like a million dollars!
I mostly eat a majority plant based diet being mindful of my ratio of raw to cooked foods, I enjoy a little cheese if I’m in the mood (I’ll be sensible enough not to blame this on my Austrian heritage!) as well as some sustainably caught fish. I’ve even been known to indulge in red meat from time to time if my body calls for it, and I know where it’s been sourced. All in all I feel healthy, happy and free from the limitations of any labels.
The first time I heard the word “Flexitarian” I laughed, but this word actually exists in the Oxford English Dictionary. Essentially, it’s a person who eats a majority plant-based diet and who occasionally enjoys a little meat, or fish, or both. To me it shows an exciting new-age shift towards a more plant-based way of eating. I think it’s safe to presume that if you called yourself a vegetarian back in the day, you were regarded as a little strange, and likely become a social recluse.
The overwhelming evidence supporting the detrimental effects of the meat, dairy and processed foods industry on human, animal and environmental wellbeing are too great to ignore. Becoming a sustainable eater happened naturally on my own journey to health, with a little bit of help from some good old-fashioned research, critical thinking, and the powers that be.
If you’re willing to give it a shot, with time you might be lucky enough to find that the things you love eating, are the things you should be eating too! Balance, a willingness to change and an open mind are key to this process. The sheer abundance and potential of plant-based foods are waiting to be discovered! All the information is out there to those curious enough to feel a deeper sense of connection to their bodies, and who want to discover the joys of living a life connected to their environment.
Chia Seeds – The Runner’s Food
Chia seeds are the leading role of this week’s recipe. They are after all, so remarkably talented…
The tale speaks of an ancient Mayan people who revered the chia seed, and ranked it higher than gold in value. The village messengers kept a store of chia seeds with them as they ran across mountain ranges with important information for their neighbouring communities. The seeds were a well-respected crop for their life giving qualities, and cultivated as an ultra high energy giving food.
Today, and chia seeds are every endurance athlete’s dream. They are loaded with essential proteins, fats, carbohydrates, omega 3 fatty acids, antioxidants, vitamins and minerals, giving them an extraordinary nutritional profile. They contain 19 amino acids as well as twice the amount of protein found in almost any other seed or grain.
Having recently been at the Jbay Surf Pro, it was actually one of the competing surfers, Kelly Slater, who revealed his pre-workout intake to be none other than the legendary chia seed, in the form of chia pots. I immediately started thinking about chia’s celebrated endurance enhancing properties, and was interested to see their effect on my yoga practice.
Enjoying a good workout myself, I went out to test the theory on my performance, and I can genuinely say they are amazing. Supplementing with chia seeds regularly, even daily, and these bad boys will do just the trick. You’ll be amazed at how much lighter you feel! This is a superfood worth getting to know.
Chia seeds combine well with other flavours, being quite mild in taste themselves. They are versatile and make good additions to porridge, smoothies, crackers and health bars. They soak up to 10 times their volume in a mere 15 minutes. Furthermore, you can use chia seeds as an egg replacement, because of their gelatinous properties – just combine 1 T chia with 3 T water and all of your vegan-friendly dessert dreams will become a reality.
These little guys are also super high in fibre, nutritionally dense and a perfect solution to ward off hunger whilst stabilising blood sugar levels at the same time.
With all of that in mind, enjoy the meal and your accompanying new energy levels!
2 C H20
¼ C Cashews, Soaked (+/- 4 hours if you have the time)
¼ C White Mulberries (Check Out www.soaringfreesuperfoods.co.za)
1 T Hemp Seeds
¼ t Cardamom
½ t Cinnamon
2 T Honey
5 T Chia Seeds
1 Orange, Juiced
1 Cm Ginger
My favourite blender is the NutriBullet, hands down!
The way that the NutriBullet blends plant based foods is by nutrient extraction, which means that you get the most amount of nutrients possible from your food. The blade of the NutriBullet is designed to break down the cell walls of fibrous plant foods releasing their vitamin and mineral content and increasing their overall digestibility.
But what I really love the most about the NutriBullet is that it turns beneficial fibres, nuts, seeds and skins into the most silky smooth finished product, which makes smoothies and sauces that much more enjoyable.
Need to make a quick and easy nut milk for smoothies and breakfasts bowls? The NutriBullet is your answer.
Place all of the ingredients in a blender, besides the chia seeds, and blend on high for a few minutes until you have a smooth and creamy consistency.
Add the chia seeds to your newly made mulberry and cashew nut milk, and allow to stand for up to 15 minutes giving the chia seeds enough time to swell up and absorb the liquid. About 2-3 tablespoons of chia seeds per 250 ml of liquid creates a nice consistency.
Once 15 minutes is up, pour your mixture into 2 bowls, decorate the top with some mulberries, cashews and a drizzle of honey. Enjoy!
So much love,