seeds

Coconut & Cacao Protein Bites

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup packed pitted Medjool dates (13-14 large)  
  • 1/4 cup hulled hemp seed
  • 1/4 cup chia seed
  • 1/4 cup sesame seed
  • 1/4 cup cocoa powder
  • 1/4 cup shredded coconut  **omit if you need to avoid nuts/coconut
  • 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 scoop Jay Robb egg white protein powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon fine grain sea salt, or to taste
  • 1/4 cup raw cacao nibs (or mini dark chocolate chips)

How To:

Add dates into processor and process until a chunky paste forms.

Add in the hemp, chia, sesame, cocoa, *coconut, vanilla, cinnamon, protein powder and salt. Process until thoroughly combined. Pulse in the cacao nibs. The dough should be sticky when pressed between your fingers. If it’s not sticky enough to shape into balls, add a small amount of water (a teaspoon at a time) and process until it comes together.

Shape dough into small balls (about 16) and roll the top half of each in the remaining coconut flakes.  Freeze for 20 minutes or so until firm. Store leftovers in the fridge until your next snack attack hits.

Thank you to Oh She Glows for these sweet treats!  

Benefits of Eating Chia Seeds

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Yes, these small seeds are notorious for getting stuck in your teeth, but the health benefits of these tiny super seeds outweighs the dental inconvenience they cause. The ancient Aztecs consumed chia seeds for energy and conquered their corner of the world. These days, many people still enjoy the nutritional benefits of chia seeds.

The chia seed (Salvia hispanica) is a cousin of the seeds (Salvia columbariae) once used to grow a crop of green “hair” atop the popular 1980s clay pets famously sold on infomercials. The chia seed is now sold as a topping for yogurts, salads and used in cereal, energy bars, and even pasta. Also, it packs more alpha-linoleic acid, a heart-healthy omega-3 fat, than flaxseeds and provides fiber, antioxidants, calcium, and iron.

The tiny black chia seeds, cultivated by the Aztecs during pre-Colombian times, are slowly working their way into American markets. Similar to flax, chia seeds are also rich in phosphorous, and manganese. Sprinkle them on cereal, oatmeal, or salad for some crunch.  Or add them to your morning smoothie to stay fuller longer since the seeds expand in liquid.

Beet Avocado & Arugula Salad

Prepare the beet slaw on the first day and refrigerate leftovers. Add greens, avocado, and seeds just before eating.

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Ingredients:

For the Big Batch

2 beets, peeled and grated or thinly sliced

4 stalks celery, thinly sliced

1 English cucumber, seeded, thinly sliced

2 scallions (green parts only), thinly sliced

For Each Serving

1 packed cup baby arugula

2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

2 tablespoons lemon juice

Coarse salt and freshly ground black pepper

1/2 avocado, diced

3 tablespoons sunflower seeds, toasted

How To: 

In a large bowl, toss beets, celery, cucumber, and scallions.

To serve, toss 2 cups slaw with arugula, oil, and lemon juice. Season with salt and pepper. Top with avocado and seeds.

Thank you to Whole Living for this liver-nourishing Spring salad.

6 Top Foods for Beautiful Skin

Glowing skin is anything but skin deep: the epidermis is often the visible scorecard for how well we eat. Look for these go-to beauty foods at your local farmers’ market or health food store, and start noshing your way to luminous skin and glowing inner health:

1. Berries. As rich sources of antioxidants, berries help protect your skin’s collagen from free radical damage (think: wrinkles) caused by too much stress, sun and pollutants.

2. Dark leafy greens. Kale, collards, chard, spinach, arugula, watercress, parsley, and wheat and barley grasses are all rich in chlorophyll, a pigment that catches the sun’s energy and emanates its radiant benefits to you. 

** Add in recipe for Summer Spinach & Berry Salad **

3. Radishes. This humble root might hold the triple crown of glowing skin: vitamin C, sulfur and silicon, which all support collagen production and help keep skin moist and elastic.

4. Dark chocolate and raw cacao. The super dose of antioxidants in high-quality, organic, raw chocolate and 70% dark chocolate can help increase hydration, improve blood flow, enhance skin texture and cell renewal. Cacao has a high concentration of sulfur, known to promote beautiful skin.

5. Flax, hemp and chia seeds. These beautifying seeds are rich sources of ALA (alpha-linoleic acid) omega-3 fatty acids. High levels of ALA can help prevent wrinkles and protect against sun damage, resulting in youthful, nourished skin that glows.

6. Olive oil. Organic, cold-pressed olive oil is rich in vitamin E and fatty acids, which can help keep skin looking soft, smooth and radiant.

Lastly: Dry, rough and dull skin can be a sign of dehydration. Ensure your body is hydrated by drinking plenty of water.

The Power Of Seeds

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Seeds are an easy way to add essential nutrients to your diet. Here are some smart ways to incorporate them into your diet:

  • Sesame Seeds: 1/4 cup delivers 28% of your daily calcium needs, 24% iron, 35% copper and 25% magnesium. Use raw or toasted sesame seeds to make a crust on eggplant, fish or chicken.
  • Pumpkin Seeds: One ounce (160 calories) contain 40% of your daily magnesium needs (which help with muscle weakness). Use them to top your salads or vegetables.
  • Sunflower Seeds: Shelled sunflower seeds contain copper and selenium which help protect your muscles. You get 80% of your required Vitamin E as well - a heart healthy anti-oxidant. Grind shelled seeds in a grinder/processor and use as a spread for crackers.
  • Flaxseeds: One ounce supplies 100% of your daily dose of omega 3 fatty acids and about 10x more lingans (both help heart disease). Look for milled flaxseeds for absorption (whole can be eaten but won't absorb). Add 2T to your pancake batter or oatmeal.