What to Eat Now: 5 Best Foods to Boost Your Diet This Spring.
Spring is a time where we all climb out of hibernation, brush off the cobwebs and get ready for the excitement of summer. It is also a time where delicious foods come into season and our bodies start to crave the nutrients that will energize us. This spring, be on the lookout for these 5 nutrient-dense foods that will help fuel your best year yet!
Most of our experience with seaweed is limited to getting tangled up at the beach or finding it wrapped around our sushi roll. However, it is a nutrient-dense superfood and, when prepared correctly, can be a delicious addition to your diet. The most significant nutrient that seaweed contains is iodine. This is extremely important because most other foods are void of this important nutrient. Signs of slight iodine deficiencies are impaired thyroid function, fatigue, mild depression and muscle weakness. The best thing about seaweed is that it is so dense in nutrients that a little goes a long way. So enjoying a few sushi rolls per week is all you need. You can also try this Kelp Noodle with Almond Ginger recipe.
Bone broth may seem “so 2015” and like a weird addition for the warmer months, however you can expect bone broth to become even more mainstream throughout 2016. The list of the claimed benefits of bone broth is extensive, and in some cases greatly oversold. However it has been shown to have a powerful benefit on immune function, digestive health and joint pain. This is key when focusing on your fitness and trying to stay healthy through the summer. Not only that, it is a great way to add flavor to other wise bland dishes. If you want to give making your own broth a try, check out my very own Mouthwatering Bone Broth recipe.
L-Glutamine is the most concentrated amino acid in your body. It is involved in more metabolic processes than any other amino acid and plays a key role in tissue repair. This is extremely important for digestive health (i.e. IBS, leaky gut, bloating, etc.) as well as muscle repair and growth. As a rule of thumb, foods rich in protein are also rich in l-Glutamine. Examples are grass-fed beef, fish, eggs, cottage cheese, lentils and beans. This is why both athletes as well as people starting a new exercise regime tend to benefit from adding high-quality forms of protein to their diet. Those who are experiencing digestive symptoms as well as those trying to build muscle may also benefit from supplementing with l-Glutamine. My favorite way is to add a high quality l-Glutamine powder to my post-workout green smoothie.
The UN has officially deemed 2016 The International Year of Pulses. Pulses are in the legume family and include lentils, chickpeas, dried beans and peas. Pulses are great vegetarian sources of protein, high in fiber and naturally gluten-free. They are also environmentally sustainable and very versatile. Unlike most health trends, they are actually extremely economical. You can expect to see more high protein meat alternatives, such as Beyond Meat, made with these ingredients as well as main courses at your favorite restaurants. In the meantime, give these delicious Spicy Oven Roasted Chickpeas a try!
I don’t know if Avocado Oil will be able to dethrone coconut oil, but it will certainly give it a run for its money. Avocado oil has high levels of heart healthy monounsaturated fats, Vitamin K and Vitamin E. It also has a rich taste as well as fat content that will help you get the most nutrients out of your vegetables. However, I find the most impressive attribute of avocado oil is its high smoke point (yes, even higher than Queen Coconut Oil!). This makes it much more stable and an ideal choice for cooking at higher temperatures. Try adding this Lemon Garlic Avocado Oil Vinaigrette to your next salad!