Dynamic Duos! Try these food pairings for optimum nutrient benefits!

Some combinations are a match made in heaven, like corona and lime or Bonnie and Clyde. However, did you know that some nutrient combinations when paired together have amplified results? According to Elaine Magee, the author of Food Synergy and a registered dietitian stated that with certain food pairings, “It’s like adding 1 plus 1 and getting 4 instead of 2. The total is greater than the sum of the individual parts.”

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Combining certain foods can enhance their nutritional value, allowing your body to better absorb and reap the benefits. Be good to yourself! Eat these foods pairings and get more out of your food!

Broccoli + Tomato

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According to a 2007 Cancer Research study, John W. Erdman Jr., Ph.D., of the University of Illinois found that broccoli and tomato, when eaten together, were effective in fighting prostate cancer. John Erdman, a professor of food science and human nutrition at the University of Illinois stated that, “When tomatoes and broccoli are eaten together, we see an additive effect. We think it’s because different bio-active compounds in each food work on different anti-cancer pathways.”

Green Tea + Lemon Juice

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This duo when consumed together allows you absorb the powerful antioxidants naturally found in green tea. According to a 2007 study at Purdue University, adding some citrus (lemon, lime, grapefruit for example) to your green tea reduces the breakdown of the antioxidants in our digestive system, allowing our body to more easily absorb the antioxidants.

Spinach + Strawberries

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Fruits full of Vitamin C when paired with any plant-based source of iron will allow the body to absorb the iron that much better.  The iron from the spinach will allow your body to have a healthy immune system and healthy cellular functioning, and when paired with Vitamin C, like strawberries, the iron is able to absorb in a super way!

In this age of endless processed foods full of cancer causing elements, it’s more than time to take back control of our health, and what better way than to synergize the whole foods we eat to get even more of a bang for our health!

Written By Chelsea Clishem: From San Diego, California to Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, this bicoastal girl loves all things travel, beauty, nutrition, fitness, fashion and entertainment. Chelsea graduated from the University of California, Santa Barbara where she began her journey to be an entertainment journalist. Chelsea drops the word ‘fabulous’ on the regular and believes it’s ‘okay’ to freak out with good music and fashion!

Mood Foods

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According to The Journal of Neuroscience serotonin, a naturally occurring chemical messenger located in the brain, has a remarkable effect over many different brain functions including the control of mood, perception, cognition, sleep, appetite and pain. This chemical messenger interacts with receptors of the central and peripheral nervous systems located throughout our body, fluctuating and altering the individual’s brain functions, such as focus, happiness, memory and almost all other brain functions either directly or indirectly. When deficient in serotonin due to disruptions in the synthesis, absorption or response of this neurotransmitter, there is a direct effect on the brain functions. Although there is no direct way to directly increase supply of serotonin in the body, there is a way to eat certain foods and nutrients that increase the body’s levels of tryptophan, an amino acid that is necessary in the production of serotonin.

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According to Dr. John Grohol, “Eating a carbohydrate-rich meal will have your body trigger a release of insulin. This in turn causes any amino acids in the blood to be absorbed into the body except for tryptophan. It remains in the bloodstream at high levels following a carbohydrate meal, which means it can freely enter the brain and cause serotonin levels to rise…also getting an adequate supply of vitamin B-6, which can influence the rate at which tryptophan is converted to serotonin (Dr. John Grohol). Altering your diet to indirectly influence your serotonin levels is a natural and healthy alternative to medications. Here are some examples of foods that are high in tryptophan to help improve your mood and make you all around happier!

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Turkey

There are many pros to eating turkey including its high protein content, low fat content, source of iron, zinc, potassium and phosphorus and help to lower cholesterol levels. Also, turkey is a source of vitamin B6 and niacin, essential for energy production in the body.

Most importantly you should eat turkey because it’s notorious for containing high levels of tryptophan. Turkey is a great go to source when you want to make sure you are ingesting enough tryptophan and thus are receiving the essential amino acid that is necessary for the production of serotonin.

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Soybeans

According to an article titled, The Health Benefits of Soybeans ‘Soyabean’ is the richest plant source of protein, containing 43 percent protein as opposed to other legumes containing 20 to 25 percent protein. Furthermore, soybeans are the only vegetable that comprises all eight essential amino acids. They are also a great source of dietary fiber, provides approximately eight grams, and a good source of calcium and Vitamin B12 as well as other B-vitamins, particularly niacin, pyridoxine and folacin. Apart from its many health benefits, eat soybeans to ensure you’re getting your dose of tryptophan and thus are receiving the essential amino acid that is necessary for the production of serotonin. Control your mood with this mood food!

Salmon Fillets CREDIT AquaBounty

Salmon

Salmon is notorious for its many health benefits such as its high protein content, contents of long-chain omega-3 fatty acids, sustaining skin and hair health, cancer prevention, etc. What makes salmon truly special is its ability to alleviate a bad mood due to its high content of tryptophan, almost an entire day’s worth from a single filet if you weight 150 lbs.

For more options on what  ‘mood’ foods to eat, remember that as a rule of thumb, usually foods that are naturally high in either plants or animal protein, usually contain the highest levels of tryptophan per serving.

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High Tryptophan Meals

  • Whole wheat chicken salad sandwich
  • Peanut butter and banana sandwich
  • Chocolate soy milk
  • Mango yogurt smoothie
  • Shrimp fried rice,
  • Grilled cheese on whole wheat bread
  • Pita bread and humus

Please take note that you should intake 4 milligrams of tryptophan per kilogram of body weight each day, according to the World Health Organization. For optimum results one should eat high-tryptophan foods with carbohydrates in order to help the body better absorb the tryptophan. And although you need tryptophan to live, research indicates eating too much too much of it may be bad for your health. Lastly, you don’t need to worry about counting and tracking your levels of tryptophan, just monitor your protein consumption to know you are getting the levels of tryptophan you need to produce serotonin you need to make you happy!

Written By Chelsea Clishem: From San Diego, California to Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, this bicoastal girl loves all things travel, beauty, nutrition, fitness, fashion and entertainment. Chelsea graduated from the University of California, Santa Barbara where she began her journey to be an entertainment journalist. Chelsea drops the word ‘fabulous’ on the regular and believes it’s ‘okay’ to freak out with good music and fashion!

Naturally Boost Your Energy Level

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Eat these foods to fight fatigue naturally and boost your energy levels, both short and long term. What you eat truly does affect how you feel and how much energy you have throughout the day. So it is important that you feeding your body the right foods which will allow for a natural long-lasting energized new you. While coffee has been shown to have positive health effect when consumed in small doses, the excessive 6 to 8 cups of joe a day can lead to dehydration. Let’s do away with unhealthy energy drinks or supplements and implement some simple, natural and healthy options!  

1. Maca Powder

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Maca Powder will increase your energy in no time. Notorious for its stamina-boosting benefits, maca powder is a root derived from the radish family and is most commonly consumed in powder form available at any natural foods store. The high nutrient content is what makes maca a true superfood that improves one’s energy and increases one’s stamina within days of consuming. According to the executive of Pure World Botanicals, a company that develops commercial extracts of maca, Dr. Qun Yi Zheng, stated in a study he conducted in 2005, “Traditionally, maca has been used for medicinal purposes and as a source for energy, stamina, and endurance… the plant seems to have other properties, such as reducing depression.”

Note: Please note that a small amount will go a long way. Try maca powder in smoothies, yogurt, juices and salads.

2. Acai

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According to acclaimed Dr. Perricone, Acai, which comes from a special Amazonian palm tree, is the Number 1 Superfood. Acai is notoriously known as nature’s energy fruit because it contains a rare combination and quantities of essential fatty acids, amino acids and antioxidants. Many consume acai to boost their energy levels, as a diet high in antioxidants and other essential nutrients help naturally sustain our energy levels and stamina.

Note: Acai should be consumed in raw or frozen pulp form, available at natural food stores, for optimum benefits.

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Starting your day off with eggs is a great way to guarantee energy all morning long. Eggs are loaded with B-vitamins, which are responsible for converting food into energy. Eggs are one of the few foods considered to be a complete protein. A complete protein contains the nine essential amino acids your body cannot produce naturally. Some incomplete protein sources may contain all essential amino acids, but a complete protein contains all essential amino acids in the correct proportions, and in essence perfect for supporting biological functions of the human body.

Note: Look for organic eggs, which guarantee the eggs are antibiotic-free. Skip labels such as ‘cage free’ or ‘free range’ as these don’t guarantee antibiotic-free chickens.

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Hummus comes from a puree of chickpeas, also known as Garbanzo beans, which are generally low fat, full of vitamins and energy-packed protein. Garbanzo beans also contain high contents of fiber. According to an article writing in The World’s Healthiest Foods, garbanzo beans provide an energy punch for those who eat it because there are “extra amounts of energy provided by short chain fatty acids (SCFA’s) from the insoluble fiber in the beans. With the extra amounts of energy provided by SCFAs from the insoluble fiber in garbanzos, our colon cells can stay optimally active and healthy.”

Note: Try eating hummus with vegetables for a double energy boost!

Written By Chelsea Clishem: From San Diego, California to Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, this bicoastal girl loves all things travel, beauty, nutrition, fitness, fashion and entertainment. Chelsea graduated from the University of California, Santa Barbara where she began her journey to be an entertainment journalist. Chelsea drops the word ‘fabulous’ on the regular and believes it’s ‘okay’ to freak out with good music and fashion!

4 Superfoods You Should Eat

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If you want to improve your general health while defying aging, incorporate these 4 Superfoods into your daily routine. Superfoods are nutrient powerhouses, full of vitamins, minerals, antioxidants and polyphenols. Understanding and then incorporating the health benefits of Superfoods into your daily life will bring you vitality, longevity, improve your appearance and reduce the possibility of disease.

4 Superfoods_Kale

Kale: this leafy green goodness is the quintessential Superfood due to its high contents of vitamins A, C, B, E and K, as well as an overabundance of antioxidants, which prohibit cancer by protecting your body cells. Kale contains high contents of potassium, iron, magnesium, folate, fiber, and calcium; with minimal carbohydrates, sodium and cholesterol. The main benefits of kale are to protect the body against cancer, promote heart health, protect bones from osteoporosis and help to prevent against inflammatory diseases. To top it off, kale is an ultra beautifying food, particularly beneficial for the skin due to the ‘beauty’ vitamins A, C and E notoriously known to promote anti-aging and healthy cell growth. For a fun and tasty way to eat kale, make kale chips! Click this link for a great kale chip recipe!

4_Superfoods_Cacao Powder

Cacao Powder: a raw form of chocolate, is another Superfood, most commonly consumed in powder form.  Natural cacao contains the highest capacity of the antioxidant known as flavonoids. Such high antioxidant levels contained in cacao are beneficial for our health and longevity as they are effective in helping to prevent stroke, cancer, and heart disease.  High antioxidant levels in cacao provide extra protection for our skin from the damaging free radicals, literally slowing down the aging process. To get the benefits from cacao, add cacao powder to your morning smoothie, so in this case, it’s ok to have chocolate for breakfast! Yummy! Cacao can easily be found at any natural food store such as whole foods.

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Acai: a berry native to South America, is a special Superfood with a surplus of benefits for health and beauty. It’s benefits include detoxification benefits and general health improvements. Acai contains high levels of antioxidants that protect your cells from damaging toxins and free radicals. It has major effects on weight loss and obesity, anti-inflammatory effects, high cholesterol, osteoarthritis and supporting the immune system. For optimal benefits, consume it in its natural ‘whole food’ form rather than as a supplement. Acai can be found in frozen form at most grocery stores and natural food stores. For a tasty and healthy smoothie, blend the frozen acai with apple juice and bananas or strawberries.

 4Superfoods_Yerba-Mate

Yerba Mate: is an herbal tea native to South America and notorious for its surplus of health benefits. It has proven to benefit the central nervous system, the cardiovascular system, to work as a stimulant, diuretic and for weight loss and obesity management. Its high antioxidant levels protect your DNA and skin from damaging free radicals and may prevent some cancers. Yerba Mate can be found at most grocery stores, either as a loose-leaf tea or in the form of tea bags.

Incorporating these top Superfoods into your daily routine will without a shadow of a doubt make you feel better, look better and work for you as a natural defense against aging and disease! So gear up and discover the natural benefits of Superfoods.

Written By Chelsea Clishem: From San Diego, California to Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, this bicoastal girl loves all things travel, beauty, nutrition, fitness, fashion and entertainment. Chelsea graduated from the University of California, Santa Barbara where she began her journey to be an entertainment journalist. Chelsea drops the word ‘fabulous’ on the regular and believes it’s ‘okay’ to freak out with good music and fashion!

4 Tips to Eating Healthier

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It’s not always what you eat – sometimes it’s how. I don’t profess to be an expert, but one thing I do know is that strict eating plans don’t always work. In my quest for living a healthier, I have learned a few tips to leaving some of my bad eating habits behind.

Here are four tips to eating healthier!

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Smaller Portions: I’ve heard “bigger is better” but in this case not so much. King size, super size – there’s always a size up, but do you really need all of that? Overeating may be a result of having too much on your plate. Instead, try smaller portion sizes – try getting smaller plates and cups, it might help!

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Moderation: Of course there are foods that are unhealthy and eating lots of them is no bueno for your diet. However, I’m one to believe that in general some of the foods that are a no no – sugars are my vice – are okay to eat in small doses. My problem is that I over eat them. Moderation is key, so limit yourself Lovelies.

snacks

Plan Ahead: Often times we eat unhealthy because we are on the go. We are “forced” to eat fast food or unhealthy snacks because we don’t have any healthy foods readily available. To mitigate this pack a lunch! Plan out your day to include enough food and snacks to eat when you are hungry. This can save your diet and money!

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Schedule a Time – I have a sweet tooth and I can’t deny it! What’s your eating vice – soda, carbs, cookies? I schedule a time for me to eat my favorite candy so that I reward myself at the end of the day or week. Having candy free weeks for me have helped because I have a goal which is to get through the week without succombing to my sweet tooth. When the weekend comes I can rewards myself with a nice ice cream sundae or my favorite, fun dip!

What do you think Lovelies?

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