27 February 2010

2 Superfoods that I Love!

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Maca is a Peruvian root crop used by the people back in the day to increase strength and improve their mood. It was said that the Incans would consume Maca before entering battle because of this. Maca has 55 beneficial phyto-chemicals and is also an adaptogen. This means it helps the body to adapt to extreme conditions by replenishing our cells and rebuilding our immune systems if they've gotten weak over time. It promotes good hormone balance, reduces anxiety and stress, promotes good memory and clarity, etc. Basically, it contributes to our overall well-being and makes us feel good!

I use this brand in particular because you can buy it on amazon for a very affordable price, but also because it's the first company to release Maca and I've heard many great things about them :) Maca has a very distinct taste that not many people may like at first, but after a while you'll get used to it and quite frankly, the benefits are so unyielding that it might not even matter haha. It's very malty, so you really have to mix it in if you're combining it with a liquid or else you'll get chunks of just malty, almost bitter taste in your mouth. Overall, it really does make me feel good. I put it (along with the protein powder) in my post-workout shakes and you can barely taste it among the fresh fruit, milk, etc.

The 2nd super food I love right now is protein powder. There are different protein powders available in the market, but I choose to use natural whey protein because there have been clinical studies that show it contains a lot of anti-inflammatory and anti-cancer properties. Any brand works fine. I use Six Star from Wal-Mart because, again, it's affordable and has less sugar and calories than some of the other brands out there. 

I love using these in my recipes nowadays like oatmeal, smoothies, pancakes (I'll be posting a lot more healthy recipes here on my blog!), etc.  I'll add it in soymilk if I'm lazy. Instead of using sugar when I'm baking, I put protein powder for it's very naturally sweet. Just yesterday I baked up some delicious bread pudding using only protein powder as my sweetener. You can purchase it in different flavors. I personally prefer the versatility that vanilla encompasses over the rest. I like adding my favorite fresh fruits, peanut butter, or chocolate along with the maca if I want to spiff it up myself. I've also seen it come in chocolate, cookies 'n' cream, peanut butter, strawberry and I'm sure there's more, so you can't go wrong! In the past I never ever ever considered taking a protein shake in supplement to my workouts because I feared that I'd achieve the "buff, manly look" haha but then with more research I learned that with women, that's usually not possible because our bodies don't have enough testosterone to allow that to happen. I'm not a body builder nor do I plan to be one. I consider myself to be a moderate exerciser, so I usually only have one protein shake a day after my workouts. Sometimes I'll have it for breakfast if I'm too lazy to whip something up.

Ever since I've been taking these 2 wonderful superfoods in conjunction with vitamin supplements and adequate water intake, I've noticed a huge difference. I have a lot more strength now. My muscle tissues are getting enough nutrients from the protein powder to keep it strong and replenished and the maca gives me strength to begin my workouts and it just makes me feel good.....great! I highly recommend anyone looking for a good boost and to get healthier to try these out :)

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