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Top 3 ingredients to add to any meal

There are 3 ingredients/products that my wife and I make sure to use regularly when preparing meals. These ingredients have been shown to improve your health overall. They might not be common ingredients but they are essential and I want to you to know why. These ingredients will affect your performance and how you feel, guaranteed!

Coconut oil:  It has been around for years but really burst onto the nutrition scene more recently as a benefit.  It has been attacked by Dr. Oz without him actually having his facts right (http://www.westonaprice.org/know-your-fats/land-of-oz-attack-on-coconut-oil).  At quick glance it might look like its not healthy for ingestion, because of the high amount of saturated fats and low amount of mono-unstaturated fats.  This is mostly the reason its been criticized for 30+ years. However, these saturated fats are made primarily of medium-chain tri-glycerides rather than most saturated fats that are long-chain triglycerides. So whats the difference? Long chain triglycerides are harder for the body to break down. It just has a much longer process and is converts to stored fat much easier because of the long process and therefore are harder to be used for energy at a later time. Medium- chain and short chain trigycerides to the contrary are easily broken down and taken into the capillaries and then used for engery at a much quicker rate. Research on the effects of coconut oil ingestion and its effect on abdominal obesity in women showed (http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19437058) that it decreased abdominal circumference. It has also been shown to be beneficial for use on the skin as a moisturizer and can be absorbed into the body thru the skin as well.   I personally add this to my 10-grain hot cereal in the morning and use it for cooking certain foods. It has been a great addition to our food closet. One note, is that it comes in a solid state in a jar and melts at temperatures near 85 degrees F.

 

Flax seed meal: Here is another ingredient that I put on or in most foods/meals during the day. By adding this to your meals, you effectively increase your total fiber intake, but the big health contributor is Omega-3 fatty acids. Alpha linoleic acid and linoleic acid are two essential fatty acids that are needed thru diet. Essential fatty acids are fats that we need to take in because our body can not produce them on our own. These fatty acids have been linked to lower cardiovascular risk, and have a neuro-protective affect.I just sprinkle it on soup, chili. I put it in pancake mix, yogurt, burgers and other baked goods. Bob’s red mill is the best http://www.bobsredmill.com/flaxseed-meal.html?&cat=5 .

 

Quinoa:  pronounced Keen-wa. This is a grain that has greater nutritive value over other grains. It is not a wheat product, but still a grain. Its big benefit is its higher amount of protein than any other grain. It has an amazing and extraordinary balance of fat, protein and carbohydrate, which is unusual for a grain. It has phyto-hormornes which is more advantageous than other plant based protein sources. It has been shown to have improved neural functions in humans, helping protect cellular membranes and its minerals are used as co-factors to antioxidants. It was the first grain we introduced to our kids when they were beginning solid foods and one of our favorite dishes is quinoa salad with chopped red pepper, cucumber, and apple, pine nuts, kale(see below) and olive oil as a dressing.

Kale is another super-food that has numerous beneficial health effects. Has huge amounts of Vitamin K, has more protein than spinach. One serving, has 200% of your vitamin A, 700% of your vitamin K, and 130% of vitamin C.We have replaced any other form of leafy green in our diet with kale, because of its nutrient dense value.

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