Welcome to another edition of Superfood Saturday!
Today we bring to you the benefits of Quinoa - a new addition to the cafe here at Total Evolution Cafe & Smoothie Lounge.
If you're looking for a nutrient dense, gluten free, vegan, plant based, amazing meal, look no further. Pop on in and grab yourself a quinoa bowl.
What is quinoa? (Ps - it's pronounced keen-wah)
It's a seed that is prepared and consumed much like a grain. A very versatile ingredient, it can be added to salads, soups, wraps, or used as a base, much like rice, in our rice bowls. Quinoa comes in 3 colors - red, white, and black - and we are happy to say we serve tri colored quinoa here.
This little seed is full of protein, fiber, magnesium, iron, potassium, and so many more nutrients, including all nine of the essential amino acids. This last point, the amino acids, is especially important to those of us that prefer to not consume animal products.
Quinoa is much higher in fiber than most other grains, and it also contains potent antioxidants (flavanoids) that are extremely anti-bad things, like cancer, inflammation, depression, and viruses.
Gluten intolerance? No problem! Quinoa is gluten free.
Vegan/vegetarian? You rock - and quinoa will help you get your aminos and protein!
Looking for low GI foods? While this is still considered a carb, it is low on the GI scale!
I could go on for days about how awesome this little seed is for your diet, but I will spare you a bit.
I will just leave you with this - quinoa is one of the most versatile superfoods I have ever encountered. With the ability to truly make it into anything from muffins to soups, you can easily incorporate this into your diet immediately! And with health benefits like it provides, you would be crazy to not begin consuming some soon!
What's your favorite quinoa recipe?
Are Avocado Toasts Healthy for you? A single avocado contains 322 calories and 29 grams of fat. Those are pretty staggering numbers for a fruit, but they are heavily influenced by avocado's high amount of healthy fat.
Seventy-five percent of an average-size avocado is made up of monounsaturated fats. According to the American Heart Association, monounsaturated fats can help reduce bad cholesterol levels and lower the risk of heart disease. The Mayo Clinic says that they may also help with blood sugar control. A single avocado also contains 10 grams of fiber and a significant amount of vitamin C, vitamin B-6, potassium and magnesium. These are all good things—especially the fiber. Whole grain bread is a good place to start if you're looking for a healthy, filling choice.
And the best thing about Avocado Toast is ; WE GOT THEM! So don't wait to stop by and grab some for breakfast or lunch!
Being rich in so many key nutrients, research has uncovered that regularly eating chia seeds can improve your health in numerous ways. Some of the top chia seeds benefits are:
1. Skin and Aging - Chia seeds is high in natural phenolic (antioxidants) concentration. Chia seeds are one of nature’s riches high-antioxidant foods. Antioxidants speed up the skin’s repair systems and prevent further damage. Taking chia seeds can prevent premature skin aging due to inflammation.
2. Digestive Health - Chia is super-high in fiber, providing nearly 11 grams per ounce. One serving can provide the recommended fiber intake for the day, according to the American Dietetic Association. Fiber is essential for your body’s ability to balance insulin levels. According to the National Institutes of Health, seeds like flax and chia can be a natural blood sugar balancer due to their high fiber content and healthy fats. The rich fiber content in chia seeds also helps people feel more full quicker because it absorbs a considerable amount of water and immediately expands in the stomach when eaten. This may explain why clinical studies have proved that chia curbs hunger and suppresses appetite, which can also lead to weight loss.
3. Heart Health - Chia seeds’ ability to reverse inflammation, regulate cholesterol and lower blood pressure make it extremely beneficial to consume for heart health. Also, by reversing oxidative stress, someone is less likely to develop atherosclerosis when he or she regularly consumes chia seeds. The available human and non-human studies show possible effectiveness for allergies, angina, athletic performance enhancement, cancer, coronary heart disease (CHD), heart attack, hormonal/endocrine disorders, hyperlipidemia, hypertension, stroke, and vasodilatation.. Omega-3s work to protect the heart by lowering blood pressure, bad cholesterol and inflammation. Inflammation can put strain on blood vessels and cause heart disease. So by eating chia seeds, you can boost and protect your heart thanks to the omega-3s — just another example of the amazing chia seeds benefits available.
4. Help Treat Diabetes - Chia seeds are rich in alpha-linolenic acid and fiber • eating chia seeds completely prevents the onset of dyslipidemia and insulin resistance. • the dietary addition of chia seeds also reduces visceral adipose tissue, a “belly fat” tissue that affects the metabolism of the body and is a component of obesity. In a nutshell, chia seeds were proved to halt diabetes and reverse it, adding that to the list of chia seeds benefits.
5. Boost Your Energy and Metabolism - Chia seeds enhanced exercise performance for workouts that lasted 90 minutes the same way a sugar-laden sports drink would, but without all the unhealthy sugar. By adding a serving of chia seeds a day, you can help boost your metabolism and burn belly fat as well.
6. Stronger Bones - Just one ounce of chia seeds has about 18 percent of the recommended daily amount of calcium. Calcium is fundamental in bone health and helps maintain bone strength and mass. Chia also contains boron, which is another essential nutrient for bone health. Boronhelps metabolize calcium, magnesium, manganese and phosphorus for healthy growth of bones and muscles.
7. Build Muscle and Lose Weight - Chia seeds also rank among the top plant-based sources of protein. They’re high in essential minerals like calcium, phosphorus, magnesium, manganese, copper, zinc, iron and niacin. One of the characteristics that make chia seeds so unique is they can absorb up to 10 times their own weight in water. Because of this, chia seeds can prolong hydration and improve nutrient absorption of electrolytes. This also slows digestion and keeps you feeling fuller longer, reducing sugar cravings.
8. Fight Breast and Cervical Cancer - Chia seeds are rich in alpha lipoic acid (or ALA), which is an omega-3 fatty acid. In 2013, the Journal of Molecular Biochemistry found that ALA limited the growth of cancer cells in both breast and cervical cancers. Researchers also found that it caused cell death of the cancer cells without harming the normal healthy cells. Thus, chia seeds are cancer-fighting foods.
9. Dental Health - With chia seeds packed with calcium, phosphorus, vitamin A and zinc, it’s no wonder that they’re a top food to help your teeth. Calcium is the building block of your teeth and necessary for tooth health. Zinc prevents tartar by keeping plaque from mineralizing onto your teeth and has an antibacterial effect that keeps bad breath germs away. Vitamin A and phosphorus are also important for strong teeth and a healthy mouth.
Now that you know how good it is for you, stop into Total Evolution Cafe and Smoothie Lounge and get yourself some chia pudding!