I know at least some of you have had an experience, either personally or via loved ones, where a crisis has prompted you into a major life change. This has certainly been the case for me: over more than a year, bouts of constant colds and flus, a lasting feeling of not being quite well and a debilitating skin condition have forced me to look long and hard at my lifestyle and attitude to food.
Harking back to my ‘Frandomness’ post of 2 September 2009, I still have those mini-realisations that never make it to full-length posts. I would like to share some of my most recent learnings with you, all of which are shaping my evolving foodly philosophy:
1. On parsley. The chlorophyll present in all herbs and green vegetables makes them beneficial to the blood and assists in elevating feelings of vitality, however parsley is particularly renowned as a blood tonic.
2. On the green smoothie. The green smoothie was, for me, an epiphany. It is pure, unadulterated goodness in a glass. I make mine according to Club Zing‘s list of ingredients, but it’s never quite the same…
3. On salt. Is it really so bad for us? Maybe in high doses. Throughout history, salt (sodium) has been used as a food preservative and flavour enhancer — and our bodies need sodium to regulate fluid, to transmit electrical impulses and for glucose absorption. Sodium can directly benefit the nervous system and heart, although overuse is often linked with high blood pressure. Many sources suggest using sea salt or Himalayan salt for their trace minerals and more natural processing.
[ref. 1998 study from Alderman, Cohen & Madhavan]
4. Chia seeds. As well as being high in antioxidants and other nutrients, chia seeds are rich in omega-3 fatty acids. Last weekend I also discovered that ground chia seeds can be used to bind ingredients together (in a similar way to ground oats) once a little water is added.
[ref. 2012 review article by Ali, Yeap, Ho, Beh, Tan & Tan]
5. On sprouting. Sprouts can be more nutrient-rich than the adult plant. For example, while broccoli is super high in sulforaphane glucosinolate, which boosts the body’s cancer-clearing abilities, broccoli sprouts actually have 50 times more sulforaphane than the mature plant by weight.
[ref. 1997 research from Fahey, Zhang, and Talalay and 2010 paper from Marton, Mandoki, Csapo-Kiss & Csapo]
6. Nuts. It is suggested that nuts are more digestible when soaked in cold water — then you can dehydrate them to increase their shelf life.
7. On changing our genes. We are often told that our predispositions to many diseases and health issues are hereditary and, therefore, nothing can be done to stop them. Likewise, conventional science tells us that the nuclei are the brains of our cells.
Consider yet other research which tells us that our cell membranes also hold genetic material and impact greatly on cell survival — and our genes can be changed by our very beliefs. Cellular biologist Bruce Lipton has confirmed that DNA is controlled by external stimuli, which include our thoughts. I am super excited to think that I can impact upon my health and genetic make-up by what I think — and what I eat is a key factor in thinking positive!
These are just a few of my recent learnings, yet I just realised how much I crammed into a relatively small space! I have so much more to learn and share but I’ll leave it there for now because I am keen to know —
Does any of this look familiar to you? Does it challenge you?