Many weight loss plans focus on calories or grams of protein vs grams of carbohydrates. Which is why diets suck, and even worse don’t work for the long haul. You get bored, your body starts craving foods you miss. Not because you body is your enemy but because you body needs a variety of foods. A truly sustainable eating plan is made up of a variety of foods. Your body needs protein to build muscle, carbohydrates for energy, and even fat. What it does not need is artificial colors, flavors, preservatives and other fillers common in processed food.
Eating foods as close to nature as possible is the easiest way to cash in on nutrients. The more processed the food, the less nutrient rich. Super added benefit? Fresh, natural foods taste better! Foods that are whole, unadulterated and natural the way the good lord intended are full of nutrients. You get vitamins, minerals to keep you healthy and fiber to keep you full and satisfied and whole natural foods, have the added benefit loaded with micro and phytonutrients which help prevent and even cure disease.
So whether you are in the process of converting your diet or are already on the road to wellness here is a short list of amazing powerhouse foods. And a couple of delicious recipes for my favorite superfood kale.
6 Superfoods You Should Eat
Blueberries are phytonutrient superstars are high in Vitamins C and E and a good source of fiber. Add a bit of sweetness to your salad by finishing topping with fresh blueberries or jazz your oatmeal with fresh blueberries and almonds.
Kale is loaded with vitamins A, C, and K and magnesium. Kale is also a great source of lutein, xeaxanthin and sulforaphane. Cook kale by lightly steaming. Kale is also delicious raw.
Flax Seed Oil is highly concentrated with alpha linolenic acid (ALA), an omega-3 fat and may be used to control high blood pressure, reduce the risk of cancer, heart disease and diabetes. Flax seed oil should always be used raw, making it the perfect oil to add to your dressing recipe.
Almonds are high in minerals particularly magnesium and potassium and are loaded with heart healthy polyphenols. Studies have also show that eating almonds may reduce the risk of heart disease by lowering LDL cholesterol levels. Add ground nuts to your turkey or veggie burgers for texture, flavor and added nutrition.
Butternut Squash is a good source of a host of nutrients, including Vitamins C, B1, B6, folate, pantothenic acid, Omega-3 fatty acids and Vitamin A, a powerful antioxidant. This vegetable is also extremely flexible – great substitute in soups and stews for potatoes with less carbs!
Greek Yogurt provides 10 vital nutrients as well as beneficial bacteria which promotes good digestion and is lower in sugar than other varieties of yogurt. Studies also indicate that adding yogurt to your daily diet may help you to maximize fat loss of fat and minimize muscle loss. Substitute plain yogurt for sour cream, tangy and delish.
Now I must sing praises for my absolute favorite superstar superfood Kale!
Kale is so much more than a garnish, it is fabulous raw, pickled, cooked in beans or with rice or as a snack. Here are two recipes to illustrate just how versatile kale can be.
This kale chip recipe makes a great snack or soup garnish.
The second recipe is for kale salad, make the night before and put in the fridge so all the flavors can meld. It makes a nice batch so you can share and I promise even non kale converts will be asking for the recipe. It also keeps well in the fridge for days in case you decide to keep it all for yourself.
1 bunch fresh kale
2 Tb olive oil
1 – 2 tsp sea salt
additional seasonings of choice
- wash and dry kale on paper towels
- tear kale from stems into small pieces
- place in a large bowl, toss with olive oil, salt and additional seasonings
- pour onto a baking pan, spread evenly so all pieces are on the pan with little overlap
- bake at 350 degrees approximately 7-8 min, turn gently so pieces will bake evenly
- continue to bake until lightly browned, some darker brown on edges is fine, just be careful not to burn
Notes: season according to your taste you can try: garlic powder, seasoning salt, cajun spice or any spice blend
- 1 Big bunch kale
- 1 smallish red or sweet onion sliced thin
- 2 large lemons – zest one and juice both
- 3 Tbsp olive oil
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon pepper
- 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese, packed
Wash kale, pat dry. Remove stems. Roll or fold kale so you have like a kale bundle. Cut kale straight across with a sharp knife so it makes long, thin strips.
Mix lemon juice, lemon zest, salt, pepper in a bowl, whisk in oil. Combine kale, onions and cheese. Then toss all with dressing.
Add on’s currants, walnuts, pinenuts, raisins.