Chia seeds.

Chia Seeds, A Popular Superfood

You may have heard of chia pets – clay figurines where chia sprouts grow to be like animals’ hair or fur. Many have become fond of these “pets” and were given as gifts and made someone happy. But have you heard about chia seeds? These days they have become increasingly popular as a superfood. Many are eating chia seeds for its nutritional value.

Chia seeds are oval gray seeds with black and white spots. The seeds are so tiny they’re just about 1 millimeter in diameter. A distinct characteristic of these seeds are the way they can easily absorb liquid 12 times its weight. When soaked it also becomes like gel, making it great for use in creams and beverages. The seeds come from the plant Salvia hispanica of the mint family and originated from Central America. Historically, these seeds were eaten by Aztecs and Mayans. “Chia” actually means “strength” in the Mayan language. Let’s find out if the chia seeds really live up to its name and if it will provide you with “strength” by checking out its advantages.

Benefits of Chia Seeds

Chia seeds may be small, but they are packed with a lot of nutrients that are good for your body. There are lots of benefits of chia seeds.

The high amount of antioxidants in the seeds helps in fighting aging and cancer. Because the seeds are high in fiber it is good for the intestines. Calcium, magnesium, and phosphorus which are found in chia seeds are great for healthy bones. According to studies, chia seeds may decrease the spike of blood sugar after a high carbohydrate meal of those with type 2 diabetes. Chia seeds also decreases inflammation and improve your energy. Because it’s rich in protein, it is good for the muscles, skin and hair. It is also good for the heart because of omega 3 fatty acids and the fiber in it.
If you want to lose weight, eating chia seeds can you help you with that. When the seeds become gel-like in your stomach, it will make you feel full so you don’t have to eat more than you need to. Chia seeds are high in protein and when you have higher intake of protein your appetite tends to slow down. You will also are less likely to think about food or to want to have midnight snacks. Who wouldn’t want that?
But of course the benefits can be there but eating chia seeds should be coupled by other factors such as having a healthy lifestyle and eating healthy diet. You can’t just eat chia seeds and lose weight. You would also need to eat other nutritious food and exercise as well.

Chia seeds side effects

If you are going to eat chia seeds to lose weight, you should not go around and eat chia seeds all day and every day. You should determine how much chia seeds for weight loss. There are chia seeds side effects so you have to be careful. The recommended dosage for chia seeds is taking in 20 grams or about 1 ½ tablespoons, twice a day. That is the chia seeds daily amount. So try not to eat too much.

Because chia seeds are high in fiber, eating too much of these might have a side effect on your digestive system. You might get pain in the abdomen, gas, constipation or diarrhea. If you are taking medicine for high blood pressure or blood thinners, taking chia seeds might also affect your health. If you have allergies to food like sesame or mustard seeds, you might want to avoid chia seeds as well.

You also need to be careful of eating too much of chia seeds as you may choke because of its gelling properties. There was a study of a man who ate dry chia seeds and then drank water. The expanded seeds blocked his esophagus and he was taken to the hospital to take them out. Be sure to soak chia seeds for 5-10 minutes before taking them. Another danger to not preparing chia seeds correctly is when you eat dry seeds; it might soak liquid from your body – which is not good since chia seeds absorbs 12 times its weight.

So if you ask, can you eat too many chia seeds? Yes, you actually can. But these should not stop you from eating them (except if you have allergies and taking the medication mentioned before). Just eat in moderation and you’ll do great enjoying chia seeds and the good health benefits they offer.

Eating Chia Seeds

If you’ve never had chia seeds before you should try it. It used to be sold mostly online or in natural food stores but now many grocery stores have them, thanks to the growing popularity of these nutritious seeds. So head on out to your nearest grocery stores and get those chia seeds.

It tastes bland so you can mix many flavors with it and do so many things with it. You don’t need to ground it. Try sprinkling chia seeds over cereals, yogurt, vegetables or rice. It is also great for porridge, pudding, smoothies and beverages. If you need to thicken your sauce, adding chia seeds will do the trick. If you are avoiding eggs, chia seeds can be your substitute.

There are many recipes out there with chia seeds as the main ingredient. Here’s a basic recipe for chia seeds pudding to start you off. You’ve got to have chia seeds – 6 tablespoons would be just right. You need the liquid where the seeds will soak – about 2 cups coconut milk, almond milk or regular milk will do. If you want it on the sweet side, add a tablespoon of honey, maple syrup or plain old sugar. Add a little bit of vanilla and mix. The pudding should be ready in less than 30 minutes but if you want it to really set; you can leave it in the refrigerator overnight and enjoy it the next day. Get a portion of the pudding and top it with your favorite berries – strawberries, blueberries, blackberries or raspberries. Sounds so yummy! Now that would be a great start to enjoying your chia seeds.

Avocado

The Avocado

It is green or purple on the outside. It is egg-shaped, pear-shaped or spherical. Inside, you will find yellow-green creamy flesh and there’s a big seed called “pit” or “stone.” It is a fruit that originated in Mexico but is loved by many around the world. There are many ways you can prepare this fruit. It is packed with nutrients that will sure make one healthy. Some call it an “alligator pear” because of its green and bumpy skin. Others call it the “butter fruit.” It is the avocado.

How to Eat An Avocado

For those who are unfamiliar about how to open an avocado, it’s just simple. Get a knife and cut the avocado lengthwise in half (do not cut the seed). When you open up the avocado, the seed will stick to one side. To remove the seed, some strike the seed with a knife and then pull the seed out with it. Others use the pointed edge of the knife to pry the seed out. If you opt to use a knife, use a cloth while holding the avocado to protect your hand. A better option can be to just use a spoon to pry the pit out. This way, you can avoid cutting your hand.

Once you’re done with that, you can prepare the avocado for whatever you want to use it for. Using the knife cut the avocado flesh using a cross-hatch pattern. Then scoop out the flesh with a spoon.

There are so many ways how to eat avocado. If you just want to keep it simple, you can just add sea salt and black pepper. If want more on the sour side, add lemon or lime juice. Add avocado to your sandwich and take your sandwich to a whole new level. Instead of butter or mayonnaise, you can use avocado for your breads as a healthy option. You can add it to your salads, too. Another very famous way to prepare avocado is to make it into guacamole. Add onion, garlic, tomatoes, cheese, chilies, cilantro, lime juice, and salt to your avocado and you’ve got some yummy guacamole. The only thing missing are the chips! Avocados are usually eaten raw but if you want to try cooked avocado, you can turn it into soup. Use heavy cream, some broth, salt and lime juice and you have a hearty soup. Another way to eat avocado is as a dessert. Yes, you read that right! Many Asian countries prepare avocado as a sweet treat. Add condensed milk and serve it with ice for a cool way to end your avocado meal.

Avocado Health Benefits

Some call it a superfood which contains about 20 vitamins and minerals. Here are some avocado health benefits.

Avocado is one of the fattiest plant foods available. But it is not the fat that we don’t like, it contains healthy fats called oleic acid also found in olive oil. This type of fat is good for the heart.

Avocados are rich in potassium. If you’re not a fan of bananas and you need potassium in your body, avocados are the way to go. This can help you reduce blood pressure as well as kidney failure.

Because avocados are rich in fiber, it is suitable for weight loss as well as good metabolism. Avocados are also rich in anti-oxidants like lutein which are good for your eyes. When you eat avocado, you also increase anti-oxidant absorption. The Vitamin K in avocados helps you have healthier bones. If you have arthritis, eat avocado – many studies have shown that eating avocado can help reduce the symptoms of arthritis. The folate in avocados reduces the risk of depression.

Avocado and diabetes can be related to each other. The good fat found in avocados is beneficial to people with type 2 diabetes. Avocados are low in carbohydrates and high in fiber. Because of the latter, the fruit doesn’t spike blood sugar. The healthy fat makes one feel full longer so one doesn’t eat more which may lead to losing weight and losing weight can increase insulin sensitivity.

Avocado Cons

As healthy as avocado is, there may be some disadvantages to eating it as well. If you are breastfeeding, it is best to avoid avocado as it reduces milk production. If the mother eats too much avocado, they baby might also have an upset stomach. You may also have allergies when you eat avocado like itchy mouth and swelling tongue.

There might be bad things about avocado, but the key is to eat it in moderation. Too much of something is not really good for the health.

Growing Avocados

If you want to grow your own avocados you can. Growing avocados can be easy. Remove the pit from the avocado fruit. Don’t remove the brown skin because that’s the seed cover. Look for the bottom part which is flat and where the roots will grow; and for the top part which is more elongated and where the sprout will come out. Get four toothpicks and stick them on the seed at a slightly downward angle. Submerge the seed halfway in a clear glass of water. Put the glass where there’s sunlight. You would have to wait for 2-4 weeks, changing the water every week or so. When the sprout has grown to 6-7 inches, you would need to cut it back to 3 inches and let it grow to 6-7 inches again then you can transfer it to a pot with soil. Water it often and wait for the fruits.

How to Ripen Avocados

You can wait for your avocado trees to bear fruit but it will take years though. So while waiting, you can go to the grocery store and get some more avocados (you can plant more seeds after you’re done eating the avocados). If the avocados you find are still unripe here’s how to ripen avocados. You can just put it on the fruit tray and place it where the sun can reach it and wait for about two days. If you need the avocados sooner than that, you can ripen them faster by putting about two or three fruits in a brown paper bag. It needs to be closed and stored at room temperature. You can put an apple or banana in the bag as well – the ethylene in the ripe fruits can help the avocados ripen even faster. Remember, do not microwave the avocado – it won’t turn out good. You will know that the avocado is already ripe if the stem comes off easily and the skin underneath is green. The avocado will also feel firm and soft but not squishy. When you’ve picked your ripe avocado, it’s time to dig in.

The Best Raw Vegan Recipes

A raw food diet is not another “fad diet” as most people think. Experts believe that raw food diets can help promote the habit of eating real foods in their natural state. On the other hand, eating food in an uncooked and unprocessed state will help you get all the vital nutrients without the dangerous chemicals and additives. Your goal is to obtain plenty of nutrients in an easy to digest manner. In fact, such foods are naturally suited for our bodies since our ancestors used to do it for millions of years in the past.

On the other hand, you need not go completely raw and declare yourself as a “raw vegan.” You can substitute some of your meals with raw vegetables and fruits on a daily basis until you get used to these menus. Raw food diets have been in vogue since the 1800s. There are numerous health benefits of raw vegan recipes. Prevention of constipation, lowering inflammation, improving heart health, improving digestion, improving liver functions, maintaining a healthy body weight, increasing the energy levels, clearing up the skin, preventing cancer, and lowering the amounts of carcinogens in the diet are some of these benefits.

There are many categories of people who are able to benefit from a raw food diet. If you have cancer, heart disease, kidney failure, osteoporosis, gallstones, fatigue, food allergies, high blood pressure, high cholesterol levels, autoimmune disorders, hormone imbalances, headaches, or obesity, you can definite benefit from raw vegan recipes. Many experts believe that when foods are heated to 112 degrees Fahrenheit, they retain less vital enzymes. The pancreas produces digestive enzymes to break the food into small pieces before digesting them. These enzymes are known as endogenous enzymes. Raw foods also contain enzymes which are known as exogenous enzymes. The more exogenous enzymes you intake, the easier the digestive process becomes. This will not overly tax your digestive system after all. Many foods that are high in antioxidants are sensitive to heat. In fact, phytonutrients will not stand up well to high temperatures. There is a certain temperature where foods start to be depleted of vital nutrients. This temperature is called heat labile point. The chemical configuration changes in food at this point. The enzymes are lost, and most of the food become less beneficial after that point. This is why raw vegan recipes help your body absorb more nutrients in its potent form compared to cooked foods.

Raw foods travel through the digestive system much faster than cooked food. The longer the food stay in the digestive track, the more it ferments and causes bloating issues in your stomach. The acid-alkaline balance is preserved by raw food diets. When the balance is disturbed, and acidity rises, you will experience many problems since acidosis can lower your immunity. This is you need to shift to a raw vegan diet without further delay. Here are some of the best raw vegan recipes that you can easily prepare.

Raw Rainbow Noodle Bowl –

Kelp noodles are one of the best raw substitutes for noodles. Just rinse them, and you can eat them.

Ingredients And Preparation –

16 oz. of Gold Mine Naturals kelp noodles, 2 zucchinis, 2 tablespoons peanuts, 1 teaspoon sesame seeds, and mixed vegetables of your choice. Rinse the kelp noodles and mix it in a large bowl with the spiralized zucchini. Chop your veggies and add them to the bowl. Edamame, bell pepper, green onions, and purple cabbage are a good choice of vegetables for this recipe. Edamame will add protein to the recipe while purple cabbage adds the crunch you require. You can have this recipe with any kind of sauce you prefer. When you are ready to eat it, make sure to sprinkle some sesame seeds and peanuts into the mixture.

Raw Cauliflower Detox Salad –

Cauliflower has fiber and other important compounds. The pumpkin and sunflower seeds fill you up quickly.

Ingredients And Preparation –

one cauliflower with stems removed, one broccoli with stems removed, two shredded carrots, one diced apple, 1/4 cup each of pumpkin seeds, raisins, sunflower seeds, dried cranberries, and finely chopped fresh mint, two tablespoons of maple syrup, one tablespoon of white wine vinegar, 3/4 tablespoons of salt, 1/2 tablespoon of black pepper, and one tablespoon of organic “no-salt” seasoning.

Process the cauliflower and broccoli and add them to a large bowl. Grate the carrots and add to the same bowl. Add the rest of the ingredients and stir them well. The salad could be kept in a refrigerator for a few hours or served immediately. It could be kept for 3-4 days in an airtight container.

Veggie Nori Rolls –

This vegan diet is filling and great as a midday meal to prevent snacking afterward.

Ingredients And Preparation –

One sheet nori, 1/4 sweet pea sprouts, 1/4 cup of shredded carrots, one tablespoon of yeast flakes, one small cucumber cut into matchsticks, two tablespoons of tahini, hummus, or cashew cheese, 1/4 avocado thinly sliced, one teaspoon lemon juice, and salt. Arrange the nori sheet on the work surface. Spread the hummus in a thin layer on the sheet. Arrange the carrots, pea shoots, cucumber sticks, and avocado slices on the top portion of the sheet. Sprinkle a little lemon juice and salt to taste. Now roll the edge of the nori wrap. Carefully, make it like a sushi-like roll. Slice the roll carefully with a sharp knife and serve immediately.

Summer Squash Pasta –

Summer squash and zucchini are considered a great substitute for pasta. You only need to cut them into tiny strips and add some tomatoes and shredded basil to make them look like pasta.

Ingredients And Preparation –

Eight ounces cherry tomatoes, one garlic clove, 1/4 cup toasted pistachios, two tablespoons of fresh basil, two tablespoons of extra-virgin olive oil, one teaspoon of balsamic vinegar, one zucchini cut into long strips, and kosher salt.

Take a big bowl and add the garlic, tomatoes, basil, vinegar, and oil. Season with salt and leave it for twenty minutes. Add the zucchini and pistachios and garnish with more basil leaves. It is a perfect dish for a hot day. You can add some diced avocado or corn for more nutrition.

Raw Lentil Tacos –

Sprouted lentils will add plant-based protein and flavor to the dish. They are also an excellent source of dietary soluble fiber. The diet is alkaline-forming in the body. Sunflower seeds provide mono-unsaturated oleic acid which will lower the bad cholesterol levels in your body. On the other hand, sunflower seeds and portobello mushrooms are packed with iron, manganese, calcium, magnesium, copper, selenium, and zinc. Adding fresh veggies will help enhance the flavor of the diet. This is why you need to add this healthy recipe into your raw vegan diet recipes. These are some of the best raw vegan diet recipes that will improve your overall health and well-being in the long run.

In conclusion, raw vegan diets have been popular since the 1800s. But they became extremely popular within the past couple of years. That’s because of the latest research that reveals the numerous health benefits of raw vegan diets. This type of recipe can preserve the vital nutrients in the food that would be destroyed when exposed to high temperatures. This is why experts recommend that you at least add a few of these recipes into your diet plan. It will help improve your health and well-being in the long run.


Raw Diet

Raw: The Living Food Diet

Everywhere you turn there are diets that will fit almost any lifestyle. All diets have their claims to lose weight or look younger. Unfortunately many of these diets fail in delivering their claims. Most diets are no more than money making schemes that prey on people who want to lose weight or feel better. Other diets are too rigid or too expensive for the average person. The raw food diet is neither rigid nor overly expensive. However, with all the hype of “super foods” and the number of raw food “gurus”, is raw food diet a healthy alternative? or just another diet full of hype to sell products.

What is raw food diet?

The raw food diet is an eating plan that involves fresh fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds and sprouts that are not cooked. Eating raw foods in their natural form means retaining all the vital nutrients that the food is designed for. Raw foodists eat foods that are not heated above 120-degrees. Foods that are prepared under this temperature is still considered a ” raw ” food because the nutrients and enzymes have not been disturbed. Cooking food reduces the nutritional value of the vast majority of produce. Cooking also introduces chemicals that are not healthy for the body. Most often foods that are cooked are cooked with oils, fats and preservatives that are not only unhealthy but often they can be toxic to the body.

Benefits of raw foods

The raw food diet paves the way to allow the body to heal itself. The raw food diet contains significantly less trans fats and saturated fats as the typical Standard diet. Eating a raw food diet contains less sodium and more vitamins, minerals and phytonutrients that are vital for good health and vibrancy. Although few studies have been done to examine the long term benefits of a raw food diet, vegetarians alone tend to have a reduced risk of heart attacks and are less likely to be overweight. A study shows that people who ate a mostly raw plant based diet had a reduced risk of cancer such as bladder cancer. The reason is believed to be due to the fact that raw vegetables retain all of their nutritional value. Cooking reduces the nutritional value and can add harmful non-food chemicals and toxins.

The Drawbacks of a raw food diet

Many opponents point to the lack of Vitamin B12 in a raw plant based diet. However, it has also been found that people who eat a Standard Diet are more likely to suffer from B12 deficiencies. Opponents also will point out deficiencies in iron, calcium and zinc as a reason for not adopting a raw food diet. What is not mentioned is that people that adopt a raw food diet are more apt to know exactly what their body’s needs are and can make adjustments to meet those needs. The Recommended Daily Allowances that we see are inflated numbers based on a person who eats a high cholesterol diet and smokes. There are supplements that can be taken to adjust for an individuals needs.

Superfoods

One way that people make up for any deficiencies is purchasing plant-based superfood powders and supplements. While these can be beneficial and do have their place, they are not absolute necessities to living a healthy raw lifestyle. Through proper research and understanding of nutritional values of different plant foods, an individual can make better “natural” choices to their diet. The “super foods” business has become quite lucrative but the claims of nutritional superiority are often backed up with proven results.

The raw food diet will help a person lose weight, have more energy and live a more vibrant life. A person does not need to be full 100% raw in order to enjoy the many health benefit’s a raw food diet offers. The majority of people on a raw food diet eat 80% raw foods. Also, when adopting a raw food diet you take nothing away without replacing it with raw food nutrition. Instead of a sausage biscuit for breakfast, have a fruit smoothie. The raw food diet is all about adding in the good stuff and providing many choices.

Healthy Raw Food Diet

Detoxify for a Healthier You

It is no secret that toxins are all around us. They attack us day by day, to the point of endangering our lives. Toxins are everywhere: in the water we drink, in the food we munch on, in the air that we breathe, and in practically all of the things that we get to use on a daily basis. More than ever, people are on the verge of getting sick since the level of toxins everyone absorbs is higher. As a result, the human body is more likely to suffer.

The human body has been created to do cleansing on its own. But then again, with its overexposure to tantamount toxin and poison levels, it also needs help. When toxins are not excreted, they tend to accumulate. Thus, you feel your muscles sore, you get a terrible headache, suffer from bloating, develop some types of chronic diseases, and fall into depression, and so on. It is for this reason that you should make healthy food choices.

Time and again, you will hear about people who plainly adopt the so-called vegan diet. Others even go to the extent of opting for the raw diet. Medical practitioners likewise educate you on how helpful the vegetarian diet can be. Brochures and other leaflets are distributed on the streets that talk about the importance of picking the types of food you should take in. Simply put, you should not put your health down the danger line.

Detoxification in Today’s Modern World

The modern-day scenario may be filled with tons of innovations, which undoubtedly make life easier and more convenient. However, the sad fact to it is that it also makes us prone to getting sick by the day. Hence, detoxification is something we all need to be mindful of.

As we detoxify, we eliminate those toxic wastes which have accumulated in the organs and tissues. Doing this regularly will make your immunity a lot stronger, you get to watch your weight, you become more energetic, experience fewer muscular soreness, and most of all, you can see healthier nails and hair grow. Furthermore, you can say goodbye to the feeling of being bloated, and have a healthier-looking skin!

The Main Culprits of Toxic Wastes in the Body

You might be wondering where you get all these toxins, despite the supposedly healthy food you take. But are you sure what you are taking in is really good for you? For your better understanding, toxins don’t only come as a result of poor eating habits. They are also brought by the lack of exercise, stress, too much intake of carbonated drink, caffeinated beverages, and frequent consumption of junk foods, salty, sugary, and fat-based foods.

A Look at the Process of Detoxification

Detoxifying your body isn’t that hard or taxing. It also doesn’t need much effort on your part. What it asks of you is some kind of awareness and some initiative to look for proactive solutions. In fact, you should think of detoxification as a daily regimen, just like taking a bath. You should do it as often as you clean your body from outside. You can do it by eating the right kind of food, and with that we mean healthy food choices, along with gulping down a lot of purified water. It is time to thrash those junk foods and give up those which are high in caffeine, fats, alcohol, additives, and food preservatives. Rather, be sure to substitute those intakes with food choices which contain better nourishment and which can boost the elimination of toxic wastes from your excretory and digestive systems.
The following are the foods that help speed up the process of detoxification:

Fiber-rich food

Fiber plays a major role in the entire process of detoxification. It acts like that of a broom placed inside the intestines, which captures and then sweeps off the toxic particles inside the body. It targets those surrounding the colon and the digestive system. Take note that you need loads of fiber to avoid strain in bowel movements, and to save you from feeling bloated and gaseous. Good sources of fiber are pineapple and grapefruits.

Green leafy veggies and fresh fruits

Citrus fruits are not only rich in vitamin C but also in liquid contents, and make flushing out of toxins relatively easy. The green leafy veggies, such as wheatgrass, spinach, and alfalfa sprouts are jam-packed with chlorophyll, which aids in cleansing the body.

Water

Water is great in eliminating body toxins.
Those who go through the detoxification process should do water therapy.

You will notice that most of the foods that help the body detoxify form part of the vegan or raw diet. But if you want to live a healthier life, it is best to kick those toxins out of your system!