We all know that eating healthy is important, but for some of us our perspective of what constitutes healthy can be limited and uninspired. How many people really enjoy eating a basic salad everyday? Not many, but that is what some people consider healthy food, and their food repertoire leaves a lot to be desired when it comes to balancing health and taste. In reality, with a little exploration and inspiration we can enjoy savory, hearty, and delicious foods that offer our bodies everything they need. These three foods are a little obscure to some, but stand to be some of the most delicious and powerful foods you can add to your recipe reserves.
1. Bone Broth
Bone broth is an amazingly tasty concoction that provides a host of minerals from calcium and potassium to collagen and phosphorus. The process of making the broth allows the components to break down into a readily usable form that the body loves, which makes it not only a great source of minerals, but one your body will be eager for.
Some of the benefits attributed to the regular consumption of bone broth include:
- Reduction of symptoms and pain associated with ulcerative colitis, GERD, and Chrone’s disease
- Increase in the elasticity in skin which reduces the appearance of wrinkles, cellulite, and stretch marks
- Improved joint mobility
Aside from the health benefits, making a nice bone broth is a great way to make an inexpensive and versatile stock that can be used in any number of preparations and even frozen for later use. The method to make this amazing elixir is simple: find some bones from organic, grass fed animals, combine them in a large pot with a couple tablespoons of vinegar, cover well with water, boil and then reduce heat and simmer for six hours (removing any “scum” that floats to the top), and finally allow the mixture to cook on low for about 48 hours. After completion, a thin layer of fat will form on top of the broth, remove this before using and your broth is complete.
Kale is a vegetable that is magnificently easy to prepare, and a true nutritional powerhouse with three unique varieties to help please any palette. In recent years this deep green, stalky vegetable has become very popular and widely available. Besides being easy to find, easy to prepare, and having three varieties, the nutrients in kale have been linked to the following health benefits:
- One of the most nutrient dense foods
- Strong antioxidant/anti inflammatory properties
- Cancer prevention due to glucosinolate content
- Digestive and cholesterol support
- Cell detoxification support
You can find kale in most supermarkets, farmers’ markets (in season), and at many produce stands. Take it home, give it a good wash, steam it for just five minutes and it is ready to be eaten. Its flavor pairs great with vinaigrettes and oils.
This superfood has been a powerful force in dietary traditions for over 5000 years. Often classified as a grain, this little seed is actually a relative of spinach, beets, and chard. After a renaissance in the 1980’s, the strength of this delicious grain has been realized and has become popular in homes and restaurants for its taste and nutrition.
Quinoa has an impressive resume when it comes to health benefits, including:
- It is a complete protein source, containing all nine essential amino acids
- Functioning like a grain, it also has a notable fiber content
- Its mineral profile is extensive and deep, providing nutrients essential to healthy living
- It offers cardiovascular benefits and helps prevent diabetes
With a profile like that, the benefits are hard to ignore. However, many people are intimidated by new foods, especially home preparation. Cooking quinoa is simple, and with its fluffy and slightly crunchy texture, and mild, nutty flavor it pairs well with most dishes. To prepare it easily, wash it thoroughly and combine it with water at a 1:2 ratio. Bring it to a boil, then lower the heat and simmer for about 15 minutes covered. Fluff it with a fork, add any ingredients you want and enjoy! For an added kick, try using a different liquid, like a broth, instead of water.
Try these foods to add some delicious and healthy options to your life. These three ideas are very versatile, both in tastes and preparation so don’t be nervous about trying something new. If you are familiar with these, congratulations! Be sure to share these wonderful foods with your friends and family. Remember to be happy when you eat, take your time, share your meals with people you love, and above all else: love what you eat!
– John Garda
John Garda is a Holistic Health Coach working out of NY and Miami. He has been able to help his clients overcome their challenges, and now has a practice that focuses on helping busy individuals lower their stress, lose weight, achieve wellness, and love who they see in the mirror.