Let's face it, everywhere you look on the internet, television, or in advertisements, we're seeing trends in health and food that are dominating the markets. Everything from the super food of the moment to new ways to help the environment through packaging is being force fed to us and it's hard to know which ones are really good or important. Frankly, we can't always believe everything we see or read but a lot of the time, there's something good we can take away from all of these trends.
Let's take a look at some of the most popular trends of 2019 thus far :)
CBD in everything
There's a misconception out there amongst those who are not educated on the topic that CBD will get you high because it is obtained through marijuana or hemp rather, but that's simply not the case. Cannabinoids are being studied frequently for their positive benefits and there is an alarming amount of evidence that they can help us in so many different ways including helping with stress or anxiety, managing the symptoms of epilepsy, and as a potential cancer fighter. Obviously, there's still much more work to do before we start touting it as some kind of miracle cure but evidence is leading us in that direction.
Products are hitting the market now with CBD in everything as a means of getting the benefits in a variety of forms. Gummies to give an immediate relief to stress or anxiety, CBD infused sparkling beverages, oils, and even coffees. I think we should be jumping on this bandwagon because even if we are still in the early stages of knowing exactly how much CBD can help us, there's enough studies out there that suggest its benefits and why not put good for you antioxidants into our bodies?
Plastic / Styrofoam packaging, plastic straws, one time use bottles etc., these products can easily be swapped out for sustainable products and people know this. Our oceans are flooded with plastic with images popping up all over social media of sea creatures wrapped up in plastic or suffering the effects of our needless pollution.
At the same time, we are seeing new ways to do our part popping up all over social media. For example, the trash bag challenge which is seeing people show up to an area riddled with garbage and sharing their before and after clean up photos. It's evident that the general consensus is shifting towards wanting a greener existence for the sake of the planet and this is a trend I can certainly get behind :)
VEGANISM / PLANT BASED / VEGETARIANISM
What once started as a supposed fad is now becoming mainstream and it's about time. Whether people are going vegan / vegetarian / plant based for the animals, their health, or the environment, there's no denying this movement is everywhere and companies are taking note.
TURNING ON SUGAR
Sugar is being portrayed as the enemy of our health and the leading contributor to so many problems we currently face. Obesity, diabetes, cancer, and poor oral health are all linked to sugar consumption so it's no surprise that sugar has a bad reputation. The fact is, no sugar in large quantities is going to be good for you but processed white sugars specifically are the worst of the worst. On top of that, products that contain absurd amounts of sugars or unnecessary added sugars are being targeted and frankly, I think it's a wonderful thing.
When you consider that we should be trying to have less than 25 - 37 grams of sugar a day, there's too many products out there that provide significantly more sugar than that in one go leaving us destined for health problems. Pop for example is one of the very worst of the worst out there. When you consider you can get in upwards of 40 or 50 grams of sugar from one bottle, there's nothing redeemable about it. Now don't get me wrong, we shouldn't deprive ourselves of the occasional sweet treat but the point is that we should be making an effort to reduce our sugar intake to the very best of our abilities.
There's plenty of trends out there and as I said, sometimes it can seem overwhelming to know which ones are worth partaking in. The ones I've outlined are some of my favourites that I'm promoting but we all must do what works best for our schedules and lifestyles.
What do you guys think? Are there any fads / trends in food or health you are currently digging or on the contrary, find completely ridiculous?
DIGESTION - Broccoli is full of fiber which is probably one of the most important things for our body's overall well being. Fiber plays a vital role in keeping our digestive tracts healthy and functioning properly. In fact, studies have suggested that getting enough fiber can actually help manage the effects of colitis by helping regulate our digestion. It's also thought that broccoli helps to keep our stomach lining healthy and can help maintain the amount of healthy bacteria in our guts.
ANTI-INFLAMMATORY - Broccoli boasts a large collection of vitamins and minerals, plenty of which help to fight off inflammation. Vitamins like vitamin C, magnesium, and potassium, all help to fight off inflammation in our body's. It's thought that getting enough of these vitamins and minerals can help to reduce / fight inflammation which can lead to more sever disease and illnesses if left untreated.
ANTI-CANCER / BODY DETOXIFICATION - The antioxidants in cruciferous vegetables are currently being studied for their anti-cancer properties. Their unique antioxidants are integral for fighting free radicals in our systems and also have been shown to reduce excess estrogen which can lead to breast and uterine cancers. Their unique antioxidants also target free radicals which can lead to a multitude of health problems. Including anti-carcinogenic vitamin C, they also contain beta-carotene, sulforaphane, glucoraphanin, diindolylmethane, isothiocyanates, and selenium, all of which are thought to be anti-carcinogenic.
WAYS TO GET ENOUGH
There are so many ways to enjoy broccoli that it really isn't hard to get enough of this green super veggie. There are varying reports on whether you get the full benefits of broccoli raw or cooked so enjoying both ways is in my opinion, the best way to take advantage of its nutritional benefits. Here's a few easy ways to get more broccoli in your diets!
The possibilities are truly endless with broccoli. Not only is it delicious, but it's incredibly versatile and works in a variety of dishes and various cooking methods. Getting enough broccoli is easy and super beneficial for our bodies so try adding more broccoli to your diet to reap these benefits <3
As I mentioned, seeing these stickers invoked feelings of anger but they also provoked my thought process a little so I started to use the internet to determine whether something like this could even be possible. Hours upon hours were spent researching and looking into different stories of people who claim that they cured their own cancer through a raw vegan diet and to be honest, there's plenty of people out there who claim this to be true. What's worse is that they often try and profit from it by offering meal plans and tips for example for people if they pay some kind of membership which is always an indication that something fishy is up.
Another thing I noticed was there were video testimonials from people who made these claims, so I started watching them to find out exactly what they did and how it helped them. I spent hours every day researching and in almost every case I found that there was something that just didn't add up with these claims. In fact, there were links to stories about people who made these claims and gained all of this attention only to die of cancer a year or so later. I think deep down I knew all along the cure for cancer wasn't that simple but I believe these stickers are there to invoke a thought process or curiosity about veganism. The problem is, these false claims are offensive to people who have been through cancer or witnessed a family member or friend pass away from it. Frankly, it's a slap in the face to anyone who has suffered at the hands of this disease and it almost trivializes the process someone who gets cancer endures because gosh, it's just so simple to beat cancer.
I remember finding out my mother was terminal and the feelings I experienced. I remember going online and doing research, trying to find anything online that claimed to be a cure for cancer and trying to convince my mother to try these things. This diagnosis changes you and it puts you in such a vulnerable state, one that makes you so very desperate and willing to do anything to save your loved on. I bought dandelion tea in droves, considered juicing, and started looking into natural remedies. I was willing to spend anything just for a chance to help her. The fact is, cancer CAN NOT BE CURED by eating vegetables and fruit and nothing else. It's just not that simple.
More and more people are switching to plant based diets in varying degrees and there's no denying that eating more fruits and vegetables is beneficial to us and our bodies. Plant based diets provide more fiber, nutrients and vitamins, and less fat / cholesterol, these are facts, but making claims of being able to cure disease in order to promote the vegan lifestyle is damaging, offensive, and just plain wrong.
What do you guys think?
We've all heard about it lately and there's definitely two sides to every story when it comes to celery juice. It's been all over our social media with everyone from health nuts to celebrities endorsing it as some kind of miracle cure for ailments such as indigestion / inflammation, eczema, psoriasis, and more. The question is, are these facts or fiction?
When it comes to celery, it's almost entirely made up of water but it contains plenty of antioxidants and vitamins / minerals including vitamins K, C, and A. There's no denying that celery is chalk full of good for your body vitamins and benefits but most most of all, fiber. Fiber is responsible for keeping our overall health in good form and also keeping our blood sugar down when we eat naturally sugary things like fruits of all varieties. That's why the juicing trend is slightly confusing because you eliminate one of the best components of celery in the juicing process, the fiber. So the question is, is it better to just eat the stalks or is juicing them really the answer?
Check out the link at the top of this post and find out what some experts had to say about the celery juice trend and what it does / doesn't do for you.
It's super evident that veganism continues to grow with more and more people committing to a cruelty free lifestyle. Interestingly, one of the main questions people receive from non veggies is, "Where do you get your protein?" The fact is, our bodies are not selective when it comes to protein which is to say that protein from any source, plants included, is effective. Often times, people think that without meat, we are sorely lacking in the protein department but that is simply not the case. There are an abundance of vegan protein options to get you through every day of the week. Here's a couple mentioned in the article I shared but I suggest you guys visit the article and read up for yourselves.
Like I said guys, it's so super easy to get your protein with an abundance of available options out there to keep things varied and delicious. Make sure to check out the link at the top of the page for more information <3
We've all heard the term superfood right? A food that essentially has astronomical health benefits including a plethora of vitamins, minerals, or / and antioxidants. This term has been floating around a lot more recently as veganism and health are starting to become more mainstream and people are beginning to care more and more about what exactly they are putting in their systems. Although these superfoods CAN have health benefits, sometimes there just isn't enough scientific backing, the ingredients are difficult to find, or the price simply doesn't justify the purchase. Let's break down three superfoods that are currently on the market and why you can avoid them!
I still remember the very first recipe I tried to make from scratch was soup and boy oh boy was it a train wreck. It was essentially water with greens floating in it, pretty much as offensively bad as one can imagine. After that fiasco, I told myself soup was way too hard to make and stayed away from it for months unless I was using a recipe I could follow. That failure eventually drove me to try again and again until I started getting the hang of things. Making soup is now one of my favourite things to make but that's because there are some very simple things one must consider when making soup to ensure it is delicious and flavourful every time.
Honestly, once you make your first batch of soup and it turns out just the way you thought it would, it's pretty awe-inspiring. You'll start souping once a week I can guarantee it and there's nothing wrong with that. Making big old batches of soup is great because you can freeze excess for a future meal. Just make sure you've dated your tupperware otherwise you could be eating frostbitten soup from long ago!
Working at Healthy Mama was really life changing for me in so many ways because I learned about so many different superfoods and ingredients I had never heard about. I also learned about the health benefits of some of these ingredients and started to care a little bit more about exactly what I was putting in my system and how to get the most of of what I was taking. This is what brings me to today's super food, Spirulina.
VITAMINS AND MINERALS - Spirulina is regarded as the most nutrient dense food per serving on the planet. It contains high amounts of protein (comparable gram for gram to eggs), B vitamins, calcium (over 26 times the amount per serving of milk), iron, vitamins d, c, and e, potassium, and more. Forget multivitamins when Spirulina is around!
ANTIOXIDANTS - We all know that antioxidants are important for fighting free radicals and oxidative stress in our systems. Spirulina contains an antioxidant called phycocyanin that is well known to harbour potent anti-inflammatory properties. Also, in an independent study, Spirulina was found to have an ORAC (Oxygen Radical Absorbance Capacity) of 24, 000, 4x the potency of blueberries which are world renowned for their antioxidant properties. Oxidative stress in our system and chronic inflammation are the leading causes of cancer and spirulina's potent antioxidants fight off those nasty internal problems helping to reduce our risks.
ALLERGIES - Several studies have shown that spirulina helps with the symptoms of allergy related rhinitis. One specific study found that in 127 people who took 2 grams of spirulina daily, their symptoms like nasal discharge and congestion , itching, and sneezing were dramatically reduced.
One of the biggest misunderstandings of a vegetarian or vegan diet is that we lack protein because we no longer consume meat. The fact is, vegetarians / vegans can get just as much if not more protein from their diets without the fat, cholesterol, and calories that come with eating meat. There are so many delicious foods out there that contain large amounts of protein that it's super easy to get enough of it in your diet. Below is a general idea of what 100 g of meat will give you as far as proteins are concerned and then we will see what some of the best sources of veggie proteins are and ways to get enough of them in your diet!
It's also important to note that there are complete and incomplete proteins. Nuts, quinoa, soy, and animal products contain all 9 amino acids making them complete proteins. Don't be discouraged, if you mix your favourite protein rich foods with a complete protein option, you can ensure you're getting all the necessary amino acids :)
Per 100 g
BEEF (grilled steak) 26.6 g LAMB (grilled loin) 29. 2 g
PORK (grilled chop) 31.6 g CHICKEN BREAST (without skin) 32.0 g
TUNA 23.5 g EGGS 12.5 g
VEGGIE PROTEINS / 100 g
SEITAN 75 g LENTILS 26 g
HEMP SEEDS 23 g ALMONDS 21.1 g
BLACK BEANS 21 g QUINOA 14 g
GREEK YOGURT (vegetarian only) 10 g TOFU 8 g
HUMMUS 8 g
NUTS - A handful of raw almonds is a great snack. Raw walnuts tossed in to a salad. Peanuts or peanut butter (all natural). Super easy to include a variety of nuts.
GREEK YOGURT - I enjoy Greek yogurt quite often. It's delicious on its own with a small drizzle of honey or with an abundance of fresh fruit like berries or kiwi on top. Make sure you're buying PLAIN UNSWEETENED otherwise you're likely consuming an abundance of sugar.
TOFU - Although tofu is not something I eat as often as perhaps I should, it's wonderful if prepared properly. Marinate and grill or fry it, add it to stir fries, or blend it up with seasonings and flavours to create a cheese like layer for lasagna!
HEMP SEEDS - I LOVE hemp seeds. They're nutty and nutritionally dense. Add them to your smoothies or top your salads or soups with them. It's easy to add a scoop of hemp seeds to just about anything.
As y'all can see, there's no excuse for not getting enough protein when there are an abundant of delicious and easy to eat options out there for you. Enjoy a varied diet by including different forms of protein in to your diet to keep things interesting and to benefit from the unique antioxidants and nutrients each form of protein rich food offers.
Along with my own knowledge, information taken from:
Cruciferous veggies are a super food group that are crucial to our body's overall health. They offer us protection from various cancers while promoting overall health benefits that are undeniable. What veggies are considered cruciferous? Vegetables like broccoli, cauliflower, brussel sprouts, cabbage, kale, and bok choy, are all cruciferous and all share similar body benefits while offering individual benefits that are important for our bodies.
TIPS FOR GETTING MORE CRUCIFEROUS VEG IN YOUR DIET
Eating a diet that consists of various vegetables and fruits is important but there's no denying the power of cruciferous vegetables. Try and include them into your diet at least twice a week but the more the merrier <3
Jonathan - Happy Veg
Dedicated Foodie. Proud Vegetarian. Recipe Creator. Friend to all Animals.