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Health Benefits of Lychee

Lychee, also known as ‘Litchi’ or ‘Lichi’, is a native fruit of Southeast Asia. Since ancient times, this fruit has been a favorite of the Cantonese and is eaten fresh or dried. 

In the present day, Lychee is now enjoyed worldwide due to its refreshing, aromatic, and sweet flavor which makes it an ideal fruit to savor during a busy day!

The most important factor why you should consider trying out this fruit is because it is rich in health benefits that will help strengthen your immunity and together; we will discover those benefits in this blog.

Fortifies Your Immunity

The first thing that pops into your mind when you think of “healthy” is “immunity”. Well, you are in perfect luck because Vitamin C is lychee’s most significant vitamin and it contains more than 100% of the daily Vitamin C requirement. Vitamin C is an antioxidant that helps stimulate the activity of white blood cells and promotes cell regeneration.  

Smooth Digestion

Indulge your snack time with lychee and expect your toilet time to be easier and more comfortable! This fruit is rich in dietary fiber that bulks your stool and stimulates peristaltic motion of the smooth small intestine muscles for a smoother bowel movement. Lyche also increases the efficiency of the absorption of nutrition by promoting the production of gastric and digestive juices.

Improve Blood Circulation

Lyche contains a considerable amount of copper, a nutrient that is integral in the formation of RBC therefore, it amplifies blood circulation and increases the oxygenation of the organs and cells.

Lychee-vanilla coconut cooler

Ingredients:

  • 10–12 fresh lychees, peeled
  • 2 cups coconut milk
  • 1 1/4 cups almond or hemp milk
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1-inch piece of vanilla bean, scraped
  • 1/2 to 3/4 cup black tapioca pearls

Direction:

  1. Bring four cups of water to a boil in a small saucepan. Throw in the tapioca pearls and boil for about 3 minutes. Reduce the heat to medium, cover, and simmer for 5 minutes more. Remove from the water and place into a container. Cover with fresh water and place a lid on it and refrigerate until you are ready to use it.
  2. Combine all of the other ingredients in a blender and puree until smooth. Transfer to a container and place in the refrigerator to chill.
  3.  About an hour before serving, place it in the freezer. Add some of the tapioca pearls to the cooler before serving.

Adapted from Olives For Dinner

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Health Benefits of Ginger

Ginger is a flowering plant that flourishes in Southeast Asia. It has been used as a traditional and alternative medicine in several forms for many years, therefore earning its title as one of the world’s healthiest spices!

Let’s find out what makes this spice special!

Immune Booster

Ginger contains gingerol, a compound that makes up its spicy and pungent flavor, and it contains antioxidant properties that help boost your immune system. 

Prevents Heart Disease

Ginger contains an antioxidant called phytonutrient and it is known for its anti-inflammatory prowess. This compound can lower blood pressure & cholesterol, therefore, protecting you from heart-related diseases. 

Relief for Upset Stomach

Ginger has been linked to numerous digestive benefits, particularly acting on parts of your GI tract responsible for feelings of nausea, stomach upset, and vomiting. So if your tummy feels off the charts, try sipping on a hot ginger tea. 

Ease Period Pain

Ginger tea can work wonders in relieving pain and period pain is no exception! A sip of ginger tea can also soothe nausea during that time of the month. 

Carrot Ginger Soup

Ingredients:

  • 1 yellow onion
  • 4 cups chopped carrots (1 3/4 pounds or about 12 large carrots)
  • 1 ½ tablespoon peeled and minced ginger root (about 1-inch nub)
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 4 cups vegetable broth
  • ¼ teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 pinch cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt
  • ½ cup full fat coconut milk

Instructions:

  1. Dice the onion. Peel and chop the carrots. Peel the ginger with a spoon, then mince it.
  2. In a large pot, heat the olive oil over medium high heat. Add the onion and sauté for 5 minutes. Add the ginger, carrots, vegetable broth, garlic powder, cinnamon and salt and bring to a boil. Then simmer until the carrots are tender, about 15 to 20 minutes.
  3. Carefully transfer the hot soup to a blender using a ladle (or use an immersion blender). Add the coconut milk and blend until smooth and creamy. Taste and adjust seasonings as desired. Serve swirled with a drizzle of coconut milk and topped with fresh cilantro.

Adapted from A Couple Cooks

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Health Benefits Broccoli

One of the top foods that pop into mind when you think of healthy eating is probably broccoli! This cruciferous vegetable is good for all the right reasons. It is delicious, easy to incorporate with other dishes, and it contains powerful nutrients that are healthy for people of all ages. 

Read on and learn about the health benefits of broccoli along with an appetizing recipe.

Powerful Antioxidants

Broccoli can counter the negative effects of UV rays through its antioxidant compounds. It also contains lutein and zeaxanthin which protect the eyes from macular degeneration and cataracts.

Fights Inflammation

Cruciferous veggies including broccoli are powerful foods that fend off inflammation and reduce the risk of developing chronic diseases. Existing inflammatory conditions are no exception from this benefit which includes type 2 diabetes, obesity, bowel disease, rheumatoid arthritis, and skin conditions. 

Fiber For Life

Stronger guts, more glory! Broccoli is rich in fiber which fortifies the ability of your digestive system to smoothly digest and excrete waste. This can lead to a stronger immune system and a swifter response to inflammation. 

Pro eyesight

Just like carrots, broccoli is rich in lutein which can help protect your eyes from macular degeneration and cataracts.

Vegan Broccoli Soup

Ingredients:

  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, more for drizzling
  • 1 small yellow onion, diced
  • ½ cup chopped celery
  • ⅓ cup chopped carrots
  • 1 lb. broccoli, stems diced, florets chopped
  • 1 small yukon gold potato, diced (1 cup)
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 4 cups vegetable broth
  • ½ cup raw cashews
  • 1½ teaspoons apple cider vinegar
  • 1/2 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • ¼ cup fresh dill
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  • 3/4 teaspoon sea salt
  • freshly ground black pepper

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F and line 2 small baking sheets with parchment paper.
  2. Heat the oil in a large pot or Dutch oven over medium heat. Add the onion, celery, carrots, broccoli stems, salt, and pepper and sauté until softened, about 10 minutes. Add the potatoes and garlic and stir, then add the broth and simmer for 20 minutes until the potatoes are soft. Let cool slightly.
  3. Set aside 1 cup of the broccoli florets to roast as a topping for the soup. Place the remaining florets in a steamer basket, and set over a pot with 1-inch of water. Bring the water to a simmer, cover, and let steam 5 minutes, until the broccoli is tender.
  4. Meanwhile, place the reserved broccoli florets on the baking sheet. Toss with a drizzle of olive oil and a pinch of salt and roast until the broccoli is tender and browned around the edges, 10 to 15 minutes.
  5. Transfer the soup to the blender and add the cashews, apple cider vinegar, and mustard, and blend until creamy. Work in batches, if necessary. Add the steamed broccoli florets, dill, and lemon juice, and pulse until the broccoli is incorporated but still chunky. The soup should be thick; if it’s too thick, add 1/2 cup water to thin to your desired consistency.
  6. Season to taste and serve the soup in bowls with the roasted broccoli.

Adapted from: Love and Lemons

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Health Benefits of Turkey

Thanksgiving is right around the corner and do you ever wonder why turkey is the most served food during this special occasion? It actually traces back to the 19th century when the turkey become a favorite first because it was plentiful and second because hens and cows were more useful for their produce (eggs, milk) rather than their meat; and third, a single turkey can feed a whole family. 

Beyond the bountiful history of this food is a flock of nutrients waiting to be discovered including a healthy turkey recipe! 

Reinforces your Immune System

Turkey is rich in selenium, an antioxidant that promotes a healthy heart and thyroid. 

Source of Protein

Aside from reinforcing your muscle growth, this abundance in protein also assists in regulating insulin levels and preventing fatigue.

Sleep inducing

Ever wonder why after a hefty bite of turkey makes you feel sleepy? That’s because this meat is rich in the amino acid L-tryptophan which promotes serotonin and melatonin. So if you are having a hard time sleeping, you might want to have a mouthful of turkey-enriched food beforehand. 

Improves Vision

Not recognized for vision like carrots or squash but turkey can help improve your eyesight and protect your eyes from cataracts due to the zinc and the B-vitamin Niacin. 

Slow-Cooker Turkey Chili with Butternut Squash

Ingredients

  • 1 pound lean ground turkey
  • 1 (28 ounces) can no-salt-added organic crushed tomatoes
  • 1 (14 ounces) can organic kidney beans, rinsed
  • 1 large onion, diced
  • 4 cups cubed butternut squash
  • 1 cup water
  • ¼ cup tomato paste
  • 3 tablespoons chili powder
  • 1 tablespoon ground cumin
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh garlic
  • ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ¾ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon cayenne
  • ½ cup sliced scallions, for serving
  • Hot sauce, for serving

Directions

  1. Coat a large nonstick skillet with cooking spray; heat over medium-high heat. Add turkey and cook, breaking it up into chunks, until no longer pink, 5 to 6 minutes. Transfer to a 5- to 6-quart slow cooker.
  2. Add tomatoes, kidney beans, onion, squash, water, tomato paste, chili powder, cumin, garlic, cinnamon, salt and cayenne to the slow cooker; stir to combine. Cover and cook on High for 4 hours or Low for 8 hours.
  3. Remove lid and stir to combine. Serve hot, topped with scallions and hot sauce, if desired.

Adapted from eatingwell.com

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Health Benefits of Beets

What lies beyond the fertile ground is a purple root vegetable filled with valuable nutrition and detoxifying properties that every single person on this planet can surely love!

It’s time to uproot the secrets of beet and uncover a special recipe inside this article.

Anti-Cancer Pigment

Beets or Beetroot is rich in a purple-crimson pigment called betacyanin. This agent is a powerful asset of the plant as it can suppress the development of cancer including bladder cancer. 

Anti-inflammatory

The betacyanin in beets remains one of the mightiest antioxidants in a vegetable due to its high anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties which protects cells from damage that can cause heart disease and cancer.

Energy Support

Looking for a shot of energy boost? Well, beat it because beetroot is the answer! The nitrate in beetroot helps deliver more oxygen to the muscles, therefore, it will help the muscles to recover faster. 

Digestive Support

Beets are a wellspring of glutamine, an amino acid that is crucial in maintaining and keeping our digestive system healthy. It is also abundant in fiber which keeps the bowel movement smooth and supports the beneficial bacteria that surrounds the gut.

Don’t like to eat beets?  If you’d like to get the benefits of beets without the taste, my favorite go-to beet supplement is Betafood by Standard Process – I use this to help support the liver and as a part of my protocols for my athletes to assist with endurance!

Mushroom and Root Vegetable Stew [Vegan, Gluten-Free]

Ingredients:

  • 1 chopped onion
  • 4 Chioggia beets
  • 4 yellow beets
  • 4 red beets
  • 2 carrots, cut into pieces
  • 5 Jerusalem artichokes
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 cup of red wine (vegan)
  • 6 cups of vegetable stock
  • A pinch of salt
  • 15 mushrooms of your choice
  • Parsley, for garnish

Directions:

  1. Start by finely chopping the onion and fry over medium heat in a heavy saucepan.
  2. Peel and cut the beets, carrots, and artichoke. When the onions are lightly browned add the beets, carrots, and artichoke and fry for a few minutes. Add the tomato purée and stir, then pour over the wine and broth. Let simmer for 40 minutes.
  3. Wash and cut the mushrooms into fine pieces. Fry in a frying pan, without oil first, and then when the mushroom water cooks out (takes a few minutes), pour in a little vegetable oil and fry so that they get a nice golden color.
  4. Taste the stew and add salt and pepper, if needed. Garnish with parsley and fried mushrooms.

Adapted from One Green Planet

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Health Benefits of Yam

Mostly mistaken as sweet potato, yam is running on a league of its own. Yam’s distinct characteristics include a cylindrical shape, bark-like skin texture, and its color varies from pink to purple to white or even yellow. It has over 600+ varieties and most of them are still grown in Africa where it originated. 

Let us unearth the health treasures that this tuber has to offer!

Cancer fighter & anti-inflammatory

Yams contain an impressive amount of cancer-fighting properties, namely the antioxidants, in addition to their vitamins and minerals. These antioxidants also provide anti-inflammatory properties which fortify the ability to reduce colon cancer, ulcers, and irritable bowel syndrome. 

Rich in iron and heart-friendly minerals

Yams keep your heart healthy by flushing out the excess sodium, therefore, reducing your risk of getting long-term diseases such as stroke, hypertension, and heart attack. Other minerals that support your heart are manganese and potassium which improve the condition of your blood vessels.

High iron and mineral contents make yams your companion in protecting you against anemia. The trace minerals can also improve your blood flow. 

Sharp eyesight

One of the many functions of Vitamin C is it safeguards your ocular (eye) health that further prevents the risk of macular degeneration.

Strong hair and nails

Yams are known to promote collagen production which keeps your skin firm and elastic; and your hair strong. Antioxidants along with Vitamin C, protect your body from free radicals preventing your skin from premature aging. 

Healthy Candied Yams

Ingredients

  • 1 yam cubed
  • 1/4 cup organic orange juice
  • 2 T maple syrup
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp nutmeg

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 400. 
  2. Slice the yam into 1-inch cubes.
  3. Throw them in a pot of boiling water for about 5-7 minutes until they are slightly underdone.
  4. Transfer then yams to a greased baking pan. (For this recipe I used an 8X8 glass dish) 
  5. In a measuring cup, mix the orange juice, 1T maple syrup, cinnamon, and nutmeg. 
  6. Pour the mixture over the yams. 
  7. Bake in the oven for about 25 minutes. 
  8. For the last 2 minutes of cooking, pull the dish out and brush with the last T of maple syrup. Enjoy!

Adapted from My Whole Food Life

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Buffalo Chicken Dip Recipe (Paleo, Gluten Free, Dairy Free)

Ya’ll this paleo recipe is soooo good. If you want that buffalo chicken feel without the guilt of fried food, dairy, or gluten this will be your new jam. Whether you a just looking to eat healthy or add weight loss as one of your health goals, this recipe is here to serve all the feels. Serve my buffalo chicken dip on lettuce wraps, gluten free crackers, or just dip in with some veggie sticks. I hope you enjoy! – Dr Z

Ingredients:

Instructions:

  1. Use a saucepan and boil the cashews in water for about 12-15 minutes or until they are soft.
  2. In a blender or food processor add drained cashews, spices, water, lemon juice and hot sauce. Blend until nice and smooth.
  3. Add the drained chicken to a casserole dish.
  4. Spread sauce from the blender on top of the chicken and mix well.
  5. Bake casserole dish at 350 degrees in over for about 20-30 minutes.
  6. Serve buffalo dip on lettuce wraps, with gluten free crackers or with veggies. ENJOY!

This dish will make approximately 4 servings – 330 calories per serving.

If you like this paleo recipe, check out my paleo- Baked Buffalo Wings Recipe.

Want to see how I made this paleo recipe? If so, watch the video below!

WANT MORE?

If you’re looking for an easy program to help keep you on track and progress with your weight loss or health goals, my 28 Day Hormone Reset Detox Program will do the trick! Includes 4 weeks of videos, food guides, shopping list, journal, recipes and much more. Check out the program and all of the details here.

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Health Benefits of Salmon

This fish has lured people’s palate across the globe through its soft texture, delicate flavor, and versatility when served on a plate. Beyond its culinary wonders, let’s journey to discover the nutritional value of this amazing and healthy food.

Repairs damaged tissues

Salmon is abundant in protein, a significant nutrient in building muscles, cartilage, bones, blood, and skin. Protein also supports building and restoring damaged tissues when injured, maintains muscles, cartilage, bones, and promotes metabolic rate. 

Amplifies Brain Health

In association with Vitamin A, Vitamin D, and Selenium, the high levels of DHA, salmon boosts brain function keeping your memory and concentration sharp. 

Protection Against Joint Inflammation

Aside from its heart-friendly properties, Omega-3 Fatty Acids are known to alleviate joint inflammation. Salmon also contains a bioactive peptide called calcitonin which helps regulate, increase, and stabilize collagen synthesis in human osteoarthritic cartilage. So say goodbye to wrinkles with this yummy food.

Powered With Antioxidants

promotes healthy cardiovascular health, immune system, anti-inflammatory, and protection from neurodegenerative diseases.

Another antioxidant present in salmon is Vitamin A and it preserves the quality of your skin and protects your eyes from age-related macular degeneration (AMD) symptoms.

Salmon-Stuffed Avocados

Ingredients:

Marinade:

  • ½ cup diced celery
  • 2 Tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
  • 1 Tablespoon lime juice
  • 2 teaspoons mayonnaise
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • ⅛ teaspoon salt
  • ⅛ teaspoon ground pepper
  • 2 (5 ounce) cans salmon, drained, flaked, skin and bones removed
  • 2 avocados
  • Chopped chives for garnish

Direction:

  1. Combine yogurt, celery, parsley, lime juice, mayonnaise, mustard, salt, and pepper in a medium bowl; mix well. Add salmon and mix well.
  2. Halve avocados lengthwise and remove pits. Scoop about 1 tablespoon flesh from each avocado half into a small bowl. Mash the scooped-out avocado flesh with a fork and stir into the salmon mixture.
  3. Fill each avocado half with about 1/4 cup of the salmon mixture, mounding it on top of the avocado halves. Garnish with chives, if desired.
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Health Benefits of Apricot

This adorable and bright fruit is rich in flavor and nutritional value and its flavor range from sweet to sweet-tart depending on the varietal. The best way to consume fresh apricot is unpeeled because the skin is loaded with fiber and nutrients.

Check out the health benefits of apricot below and uncover a sumptuous guilt-free recipe that you’ll surely enjoy!

Skin Elixir

The combination of Vitamin C and A in apricot makes it a potent elixir for keeping your skin glowing and healthy! Apricot oil derived from apricot seeds is known to treat skin problems such as eczema and dermatitis, while the flesh can be used to soothe itching caused by sunburn or scabies.

Fortified with Fiber

Fiber is your go-to mineral for fierce and healthy digestion! A diet rich in fiber also helps protect you from heart disease, cancer, diabetes, and weight gain.

Enhance Bone Strength

Apricot is rich in calcium, manganese, phosphorus, copper, and iron. These minerals promote bone growth and prevent age-related bone conditions such as osteoporosis.

Improve Metabolism

Apricot contains potassium which evenly distributes the fluids in your body, therefore, there is a healthy balance of electrolytes that amplifies your energy and keeps your blood pumping.

Apricot Bars (Paleo, Vegan)

Ingredients:

 Crust:
 Filling:
Crumb topping:

Instructions:

  1. Begin by making your filling. Set aside dried apricots in a medium-sized bowl. Boil 3 cups water, and pour over dried apricots. Let sit for about 20 minutes. Now drain the water, and add apricots to your food processor or blender. Add in lemon juice and maple syrup. Pulse until mostly smooth, a few chunks are fine. You may need to add a bit of water to get the right consistency, but the filling should be thick.
  2. Now make the crust: Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Line an 8×8 square pan with parchment paper and lightly grease. Combine all of the crust ingredients into a food processor and pulse until the mixture is crumbly. Take the mixture and carefully distribute it over the parchment paper, pressing down firmly and evenly. Place inside the oven and bake for 13 minutes, or until lightly golden brown. Remove from oven and let cool for 20 minutes. Leave the oven hot.
  3. While crust is cooling, make the crumb mixture. Combine all ingredients into your food processor and pulse for about 10 seconds, or until the mixture is crumbly.
  4. Once the crust is cooled, spread the apricot filling over the crust. Complete by topping with the crumb mixture. Now bake for 15-18 minutes, or until the top is golden brown.
  5. Remove from oven and cool completely. Once cooled, slice into squares.

Adapted from Wholesomelicious

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Health Benefits of Blueberry

A fruit that makes you feel blue? Well the kind of blue that amplifies your immunity, strengthens your brain function and shields you from cancer. It is the indomitable, mighty, yet delicate blueberry!

Blueberry is housed with powerful nutrients which is why is it is named as one of the top super foods. The best thing about this fruit is it is typically available year round and it is a great alternative for artificial or sugary sweets.

Hop in and together let us discover the health benefits of blueberry and make sure to stay tuned up until the last bits of this article to uncover a sweet tooth-satisfaction-guaranteed recipe!

POTENT ANTIOXIDANTS

Your body’s cells produce free radicals due to artificial foods and environmental stressors which can cause prostate cancer in men, arthritis, and heart disease. The reason why this fruit is classified as one of the most powerful food is because of its potent and high level of antioxidants which shields your body against the damages caused by free radicals.

PRESERVES AND ENHANCES BRAIN FUNCTION

Blueberry contains two nutrients that protect and upgrade your brain function! Phytochemicals can reverse age-related deficiencies such as short-term and long-term memory loss while flavonoids promotes blood flow to the brain and interacts with your signal pathway, thereby, improving memory and concentration.

REGULATES SUGAR LEVEL

A 150g serving of blueberry may contain up to 15g of sugar, but the anthocyanins in this fruit can improve insulin sensitivity which lowers the risk of metabolic syndrome and type 2 diabetes. Moreover, it can also reduce a spike in blood sugar by blocking certain digestive enzymes. 

SUPER IMMUNITY

Regular exercising, healthy sleeping habits, a healthy diet, and a dose of blueberry snacks or smoothies can help empower your immune system. Our body contains a gene called cathelicidin antimicrobial peptide (or CAMP gene) which plays a significant role in our innate immunity and blueberry can increase the activity of that gene through the help of pterostilbene. Flavonoids abundantly existing in blueberry have anti-inflammatory properties.

Blueberry Date Smoothie Bowls

Ingredients

Instruction

  1. Place all ingredients into a high-speed blender and blend until smooth. Top with chopped medjool dates, kiwi, blueberries, flaked coconut, and chia seeds.

Adapted from Fit Foodie Finds