Welcome to the Food Glossary- your guide to clean eating and the health benefits in the foods you are making!
Dirty Dozen:Try your best to buy these organic.
Apples, celery, sweet bell peppers, peaches, strawberries, blueberries, spinach, kale, all lettuce, potatoes, grapes, nectarines, cucumbers, green beans, carrots
Clean 15: Lowest amounts of pesticides if you choose non-organic.
Sweet corn, onions, sweet peas, cabbage, eggplant, sweet potatoes, asparagus, pineapples, mangoes, kiwifruit, cantaloupe, grapefruit, mushrooms, watermelon, avocado
Pumpkin Seeds: Packed with immunity boosting zinc and magnesium.
Hemp Seeds: Contains a balance of omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids, which promote cardiovascular health. High in gamma linolenic acid (GLA), an essential omega-6 fatty acid found in borage oil and egg yolks that has been proven to naturally balance hormones. High in protein and great to add to smoothies or sprinkled into granola.
Flaxseed: Rich in protein and omega-3s, high in fiber and lignans (compounds that help fight against cancer).
Chia Seeds: High in omega-3s, protein and lignans. Aztec Indians used to use it as their “running food” before battle as it fuels the body with lots of energy and keeps you full longer.
Sweeteners: Honey, Stevia, Maple Syrup, Xylitol are natural sweeteners and are more nutritious alternatives to white sugar. Stevia has been known to aid in reducing blood sugar and blood pressure.
Coconut Oil: Shown to reduce harmful LDL cholesterol and increase beneficial HDL.
Protein Powders: Helps boost muscle-building proteins. Vegan, egg white powder and whey powder are available.
Apple Cider Vinegar: The benefits of apple cider vinegar are endless. It helps to clean out your gut as acetic acid found in vinegar interferes with the enzymes in your stomach responsible for digesting. It is rich in potassium and enzymes, supports a healthy immune system and helps to control weight. Apple cider vinegar is also good for removing body sludge toxins and soothing dry throats.
Gluten Free Flour: Some gluten free flour mixes can be dry and dense. For best results I like to use Cup4Cup Gluten Free Flour Mix or Bob's Red Mill Gluten Free Mix.
Spelt Flour: Spelt can be eaten by some individuals with gluten intolerance. Spelt breads are created because of the lack of gluten, yet it is not wheat free. Spelt has a delicious nutty taste that is unlike the more mild flavor of wheat. It is packed with protein, fiber, potassium, iron and phosphorus. Spelt is rich in niacin, fiber, and magnesium. Eating Spelt can help reduce stroke, insulin resistance, diabetes and obesity.
Quinoa: Not only packed with plenty of fiber and complex carbs, quinoa contains a complete source of protein and cooks in only about 15 minutes!
Oats: High in Fiber, increase appetite control hormones, helps reduce type 2 diabetes, lowers bad cholesterol, and controls blood pressure. Science has also found that children introduced earlier to oats are less likely to develop persistent asthma. We like to eat them ½ cup of oats with 1-2 teaspoons of maple syrup, 1 tablespoon of hemp seeds, (optional) 1 tablespoon almond butter, ½ teaspoon of cinnamon and a dash of coconut or almond milk… so good!
Protein: Organic, Organic, Organic!
Organic Grass-Fed Beef: We don't really eat beef (I do not at all) but always choose “extra lean” to “lean”. This is to ensure minimal saturated fat and cholesterol. You should always choose grass-fed beef. Cows are raised out in pastures with free range to roam have less saturated fat and higher levels of Omega-3 fatty acids. Plus, now-a-days, grains (corn) are genetically modified. Grass fed meat and dairy is best!
Organic Chicken and Eggs: Regular chickens are pumped with antibiotics in order to keep them healthy and prevent diseases. Choose organic to prevent these hormones and antibiotics from entering your body. The flavor of Certified organic chickens and eggs is incomparable and super delicious! To tell if an egg is “healthy” and the chicken that laid the egg was healthy, the color of the yolk should be bright orange. It is the same if you were sick: you look pail and light in coloring, well the same goes for the color of egg yolks.
" We inhabit the same microbial ecosystem as the animals we eat, and whatever happens in it also happens in us." - Micael Pollan
Bananas: High in sugar and carbohydrates but packed with potassium.
Apples: Rich in important antioxidants, flavanoids, and dietary fiber. The phytonutrients and antioxidants in apples may help reduce the risk of developing cancer, hypertension, diabetes, and heart disease.
Oranges: Contain high levels of Vitamin C. Vitamin C is the primary antioxidant in the body, disarming free radicals and preventing damage in the environment both inside and outside cells. Inside cells, a potential result of free radical damage to DNA is cancer.
Blueberries: Super high in iron, phosphorous, calcium, magnesium, manganese, zinc and vitamin K which all contribute to building and maintaining bone structure and strength. It also has high potassium which aids to keep the body hydrated. The blueberry's fiber, potassium, folate, vitamin C, vitamin B6 and phytonutrient content, coupled with its lack of cholesterol, all support a healthy cardiovascular system. Its antioxidants and high levels of Vitamin C aid in cell turnover keeping the skin younger and fresher looking.
Strawberries: Strawberries are an excellent source of Vitamins C and K as well as providing lots of fiber, folic acid, manganese and potassium. They contain a good dose of phytonutrients and flavanoids which gives strawberries their bright red color. They aid in digestion, teeth whitening and to regulate blood sugar levels by slowing it down.
Tomatoes: High in vitamin C and lypocene, the phytochemical that makes them red in color and gives it antioxidant properties . Eating cooked tomatoes boosts its health benefits. Cooking tomatoes increases its lypocene levels but does reduce its levels vitamin c.
Beets: High in nitrates which is important for cardiovascular function, blood flow and increasing oxygen available to muscles. Eating cooked beats can acutely improve running performance due to more oxygen in the blood.
Sweet Potatoes: High in vitamin A, vitamin B5, B6, thiamine (water-soluble B vitamins), niacin, riboflavin, and, due to their orange color, are high in carotenoids. Aid in heart health, controlling blood sugar (release sugar slowly in the bloodstream), controlling stress, supports a healthy immune system and is an anti-inflammatory.
Purple Potatoes: Its vibrant purple color is packed with antioxidants and Phytochemicals that are known to suppress certain cancers such as colon. They help lower blood pressure and are high in fiber, rich in vitamin C and potassium.
Celery: Rich in vitamin K and also contains folate, vitamin A, potassium, and vitamin C. Mainly full of water, celery also provides a fair amount of dietary fiber.
*Disclosure: I am not a nutritionist. This information is based off research, reading and what I like to incorporate into my simple healthy recipes for a healthy lifestyle.