A Bioenergetic Scan to Unlock the Mysteries of Your Health

As a holistic practitioner, I am always looking for new ways to support my clients in creating balanced health in their bodies.  I assess their bodies and health with Ayurveda, I use various personality assessments to understand more about what makes them tick (and therefore what lifestyle factors may be contributing to their imbalances), and I take into account every minute aspect of their diet, health and life to create a holistic diagnostic picture of what’s actually going on.  The one thing that has been lacking is an effective and comprehensive health test or bioenergetic scan of their bodies.

As both a practitioner, and someone who has had my own fair share of mysterious and problematic health issues in the past, I know how unreliable (and expensive!) the usual blood work and food allergy testing can be.  I was once told by my gastroenterologist that I tested allergic to pretty much everything from lactose and fructose to gluten and legumes (which was obviously insane, and had I not known better, would have surely led me down a rabbit hole of unnecessarily restrictive diets and a lifetime of frustration).  I’ve had clients come to me with tests showing inconclusive and mysterious results across the board, which their doctors immediately started treating with even more medication — always treating the symptom, never the cause.  So I was incredibly excited when I learned about bioenergetic scanning, which I’ve found to be the most comprehensive test for creating balanced health out there.

Comprehensive Testing for Balanced Health

Fitness Trackers: Your New Fave Healthy Accessory

By: Natasha Uspensky, CHHC

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All it takes is a peek at the wrists of your friends, coworkers and passersby on the street to see that fitness trackers are all the rage right now. And for good reason!

These unobtrusive bracelets track your steps, workouts, sleep, mood, food and more, and in the opinion of this holistic nutritionist, they can be an invaluable tool in understanding your body, setting and sticking with wellness goals, and getting (and staying) super healthy and fit.

For the last 4.5 months, my techie husband and I have been testing the UP24 Band ($127), and I have to tell you, it rocks.

Eating for a Perfect Period

By: Natasha Uspensky, CHHC

Welcome to the first post in our Perfect Period Series: Eating for a Perfect Period.  First, a few facts:  what you do and do not eat/drink has a direct impact on how you experience your period.  Mood swings, cravings, cramps, irritability and fatigue are all affected by your diet in the days leading up to and during your period.  {Tweet it!} You cannot go on a pizza and beer binge the week before your period and expect smooth sailing come P-time. Our culturally engrained habit of ignoring our menstrual cycles in terms of dietary and lifestyle modifications is what makes America the land of PMS.  You don’t get an award for pretending that you are just like the boys, don’t have a natural cycle.  And you certainly don’t get any awards for needless suffering.  You DO however get an amazing Organic Beauty Goddess award for being mindful of heeding the natural changes of your body’s needs!   Select specific foods for your luteal phase (the weeks between ovulation and your period), your bleeding phase, and your follicular phase (from period to ovulation) to maximize your energy and health all month long, and lead you to a perfect period.  Read on to find out how…

Snacking Is Making You Fat (and moody, and bloated)

By: Natasha Uspensky, CHHC

The whole snack-happy, “six-small-meals-a-day” dieting philosophy is one of the worst things to have happened to Western food culture, and is pretty much the bane of my existence as a nutrition counselor.  Basically, this phenomenon has created a nation of perpetually hungry, moody hypoglycemics, and although this is great for my business, it is terrible for the health of this country.  Allow me to persuade you that snacking is one of your biggest food woes, and to show you a much better way!

Quick White Bean and Kale Soup

By: Natasha Uspensky, CHHC

This quick and delicious soup makes for a hearty and healthy dinner.  A rainbow of colors tells you you’re getting tons of yummy vitamins, and the beans mean everyone will feel full and satisfied from a vegetable protein that won’t weigh you down!

Quick White Bean and Kale Soup

Serves 4

Cooking time: 30 min

Ingredients:

2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil

1 yellow onion, chopped

4 large garlic cloves, roughly chopped

1 (32 oz) carton of low-sodium organic vegetable broth, or 4 cups of water seasoned with Seitenbacher broth powder

4 cups packed chopped kale

2 large carrots, peeled and sliced into rounds

1 (14.5 oz) can of organic, unsalted cannelini beans

1 (14.5 oz) can of organic diced tomatoes

Directions:

Heat oil over medium heat in a soup pot.  Add onion and cook 3 minutes.  Add garlic and cook another two minutes.  Add carrots and cook another minute.  Add broth, tomatoes and their juice and bring to a boil.  Cook about 5 minutes, or until carrots are tender. Add beans and kale and cook until kale is tender, about another 5-7 minutes. Season with freshly ground pepper to taste.  Serve with rye or multigrain toast.

Keep Your Weight Even When On A Vacation

By: Cole Millen

Our guest author is Cole Millen, an avid traveler and foodie who never forgets that life’s best memories are made through real life apprehension of legitimate “experiences.” He is also the author of Cole’s Mill.

Vacation is a time to have fun and to let loose. It can be a great idea to let go of the stress and chaos of everyday life. But, a vacation is certainly not a reason to toss your healthy eating habits out the window. While irresistible culinary escapades can very much be a part of your trip, it might certainly help to use caution and restraint while eating out. You might have worked endlessly to get rid of the excess weight before your much-anticipated vacation, so it’s understandable that you do not want to reverse all your hard work on your holiday.

Slim Down for Summer: Your 10 Week Plan

By: Natasha Uspensky, CHHC

Summer Slim-DownSpring is officially creeping in, with it’s gusts of 50 degree breezes and stir-crazy excitement in the air. That means bikini season in just a few months away!  So before you jump on yet another, crazy crash diet, or start doing juice cleanses every other week, let me help! Below you’ll find a 10 week plan to slim down for summer, revamp your diet, and revitalize your workout routine. If you make the commitment to yourself, your body, and your sweet, sexy summer self, this plan will take you there. Stay in touch in the comments or on our Facebook page to support each other throughout these 10 weeks, ask and answer questions, and keep yourself accountable!

The Organic Beauty 10 Week Slim Down for Summer Plan

Weeks 1 and 2:

These first two weeks are about starting and sticking to a few super healthy habits, before we move on to eliminating a some nasty ones.  First and foremost, spend these two weeks going gaga for greens.  I mean it!  Commit to having a full serving (at least 1 cup) of greens at two meals a day. For an added bonus, rock greens at all three meals!  And when I say greens, I don’t mean pale, flimsy lettuce.  I mean rich, darkly colored, super nutrient kale, spinach, chard, broccoli rabe, dandelion greens, and collards.  Eat ’em raw, eat ’em cooked (just a quick sauté with olive oil or coconut oil, garlic, and a pinch of sea salt and fresh pepper does the trick), throw ’em in your smoothies, your eggs, and your grains.  Greens are a super potent, detoxifying slim down food that is essentially “free” in terms of calories.  So eating those 2-3 cups of delicious greens every single day for the next 10 weeks means less room for other bloating, crappy foods.

Next, work on making lunch the biggest meal of your day.  Having a lighter dinner is one of the fastest ways to promote weight loss and detoxification, while helping you feel more energized and balanced throughout the day!  So make lunch dinner-sized, and dinner lunch-sized (think soup and/or salad), and watch the pounds start falling off.

Lastly, commit to working out, in any way that you enjoy, for 30 minutes to an hour, at least 3 days a week for these two weeks.  This could be yoga, pilates, running, Zumba, swimming.. whatever you love!  Don’t worry so much about the what for these two weeks, just focus on making those three days a week a non-negotiable part of your routine.  Set the days, put them in your calendar, and stick to them.  It works best to have a set three days a week that you work out, so you’re not figuring out where to fit it in every day.  Our bodies and minds thrive on routine, and this is the only way to build sustainable, healthy habits!

Weeks 1 and 2 at a Glance:

  1. Greens at least twice a day
  2. Big lunch/light dinner
  3. Exercise 30 min-1 hour 3 days a week

Weeks 3 and 4:

Now that you’re eating tons of greens every day and working out a solid three days a week, we can start to eliminate some habits that are getting in the way of your smokin’ summer bod.  It’s time to cut out processed sugar.  Completely.  As in, sayonara to Snickers, Skittles, and soda.  Does this mean you don’t get to eat anything sweet until summer?  Of course not!  Stock up on delicious fruit (especially potently antioxidant berries that are coming back into season), and sweet seasonal veggies like tomatoes, beets, bell peppers, corn, fennel, and sweet peas.  The more you incorporate these naturally sweet foods into your diet, the less you’ll be craving crappy sweets that relegate you to tankinis all summer long.  Treat yourself to a couple squares of dark chocolate (like, actually 70% dark chocolate) when you want a little something extra, and sip naturally sweetened tea throughout the day to help curb cravings.  Hibiscus, ginger, and dandelion root teas are all deeply detoxifying for spring, and with a touch of stevia to sweeten, they are a lovely drink to sip on all day long to promote slimming and steer clear of sugar!

Next, let’s amp up your workouts.  Wherever you’re at, take it up a notch.  If you’ve been doing yoga three days a week, add a fourth day of cardio or strength training.  If you’ve been running or using the elliptical machine three days a week, add a day of weights or a boot camp class.  If you’ve been a slow starter and have just been walking those three days a week, commit to taking a class of your choice for two of those days.  Wherever you’re at, amp it up!

Weeks 3 and 4 at a Glance:

  1. Cut out all processed sugar
  2. Eat fruit (especially berries) and sweet veggies.
  3. Use natural sweeteners in tea and coffee.
  4. Amp up workouts to 4 days a week.

Weeks 5 and 6:

So now you’re been eating big piles of greens at least twice a day, you’ve cut out processed sugar, and you’ve taken your workouts up a notch.  Let’s keep it going!  These two weeks are all about healthy grains.  First things first, we have to cut out the bikini bod’s mortal enemy, refined and processed grains.  This means cutting out the white bread, pasta, the processed cereals (basically any cereal other than granola), and if you haven’t already done so the last two week, all pastries!  Now I’m not saying you can’t have a slice of pizza for the next six weeks, but keep it to just once or twice a month.  Before you get all panicked at the thought of giving up bread, take a breath and chill.  You don’t need to give up grains!  These next two weeks, we are going to amp up your whole grains, which are awesome for weight loss, digestion, balancing blood sugar, and minimizing cravings.  So make sure to have a serving (about 1/2-1 cup) of whole grains at lunch and/or breakfast every day.  Brown rice, quinoa, buckwheat, oats and millet are all your best friends!  Have some oatmeal or quinoa porridge for breakfast, or a slice of sprouted whole grain Ezekiel toast with nut butter with your smoothie or eggs.   For lunch, have some brown rice or quinoa with your stir-fry or in your burrito bowl, have some sushi, or just rock some grains alongside a delicious piece of salmon and a bunch of greens for a perfect, balanced meal!

How are the workouts going??  Hopefully by now you are working out a solid four days a week, even if it’s just for 30-45 minutes! If you’re not, hang that bikini up somewhere you’ll see it every day, and repeat to yourself that YOU NEED TO WORK OUT TO LOOK GOOD IN A BIKINI!!!!  There is no way around this.  Even if you are a lucky, naturally slim person, working out 3-4 days a week, every week is going to tighten everything up in all the right places and take your body from meh to WHOA.  So quit messing around and make it happen!  If it isn’t already a part of your weekly routine, I recommend adding a pilates workout to your regimen.  Pilates is amazing for toning abs, legs, and arms, and creating the long, lean lines that we all want for summer.

Lastly, WATER!!  Make these two weeks ALL about water.  Drink half your ideal body weight in ounces, every single day.  If you need to spruce up your water, add a squeeze of fresh lemon or some lemon slices, or get creative and add fun flavor boosters like sliced ginger, berries, and mint!  Drinking tons of water is crucial to slimming down, detoxifying, and getting that hot summer bod.  So make it happen!

Weeks 5 and 6 at a Glance:

  1. Cut out processed and refined carbs
  2. Increase whole grains at breakfast and lunch
  3. Work out 4 days a week
  4. Add Pilates
  5. Drink half your ideal body weight in ounces of water every day.

Weeks 7 and 8:

Alright guys, we’re almost there!  You are now working out 4 days a week, doing pilates, eating lots of greens and whole grains, and you’ve cut out all processed sugar and carbs.  Amazing!!!  By now your body is looking leaner, slimmer, and you probably have a whole lot more energy too!  Take a minute to write down all the awesome benefits you’ve noticed over the last 6 weeks.  This will help you stay motivated for this final month!

For these next two weeks, we’re going to clean up your proteins to make them leaner, healthier, and more conducive to a hot, slim, summer bod.  If you’re a meat-eater, over the next two weeks, work on keeping your animal proteins to lean, organic, free-range chicken, eggs, and low-mercury fish.  Also, start the practice of have two meatless days per week.  Regardless of whether or not you eat meat, focus on healthy plant proteins for these two weeks.  Beans in all their many varieties, nuts, and whole grains are all wonderful sources of protein.  Even greens have protein!  So don’t feel like you need to center your meals around a Protein, with a capital P.  Eating mostly plant proteins, fish, and eggs will give your body all the protein it needs, and will promote a healthy, lean physique year-round, not just in summer!

If you aren’t doing so already, make sure one of your weekly workouts uses light weights to boost metabolism and tone muscles.  For most women, I don’t recommend using dumbbells over 5 lbs., unless you’re going for a super muscled look.  To keep muscles long, lean, and slim, use 3 lb. weights in your workouts at least once a week.  If you’re a dude, you’re free to lift more, but focus on lower weight and higher reps to get a sexy, sculpted look.

Weeks 7 and 8 at a Glance:

  1. Write down all the amazing changes you’ve noticed so far.
  2. Keep animal proteins to organic, free-range chicken, eggs, and low-mercury fish.
  3. Increase and focus on plant proteins
  4. Have at least two meatless days a week.
  5. Add light weights to your workouts at least once a week.

Weeks 9 and 10:

Here it is, guys, the final stretch!  Your body is just a month away from being totally prepped for summer, and for some of you, you may already be there!

Keep up all the amazing changes you’ve incorporated over the last 8 weeks.  You’re doing such great things for your body!  These next two weeks, we’re going to make just a couple final adjustments that will get you where you want to be in no time at all.  First, we have to cut out bloating foods.  Retaining water and a gassy belly are major buzzkills when it comes to feeling sexy in slim on the beach, so we’re going to cut those puppies out to give your amazing abs a chance to shine!  Salt, dairy, and gluten are the three biggest bloaters around, so let’s be mindful of reducing or eliminating these foods for two weeks to really get some crazy results.  If you’re cooking your own food, you’re in control of how much salt is in everything, which is great.  Keep it to a pinch of sea salt when cooking, and you’re good to go.  If you’re eating out a lot, you don’t have as much control, so use these next two weeks as motivation for getting your cook on!

If you do ok with a little Greek yogurt, I won’t take it away from you, but cheese and milk are a slim-down (and general health) no-no.  Switch to a nut milk in your coffee and granola, and ditch the cheese altogether.  It’s salty, it’s fatty, it’s bloaty, it’s bad!

If you didn’t already do so in week 5 and 6, experiment with cutting out gluten for a couple weeks to see how it effects your digestion, especially if you experience bloat, gassiness, or feel like your belly just isn’t where you want it to be.  Check out this great resource on gluten-free grains!

Your workouts are settling into a nice routine by now, with a good balance of light weights, slimming pilates, and whatever else floats your boat.  These next two weeks, let’s make sure your boat is floated by some cardio.  If cardio isn’t a part of your 4 days of exercise by now, make it one!  Better yet, do it outside!  Biking, running, swimming, or a great boot camp or crossfit-style class are all awesome cardio workouts which will make sure you’re burning off fat and keeping things lean.  If you really want to amp up these last two weeks, add a fifth day of exercise to shred, slim and ensure that awesome bikini bod.  Even if it’s just a yoga class, working out 5 days a week is an unbelievable gift to your body, your mind, and your health.

Weeks 9 and 10 at a Glance:

  1. Reduce salt (cook more at home).
  2. Eliminate milk and cheese.
  3. Experiment with cutting out gluten.
  4. Add cardio (outside if possible)
  5. Add a fifth day of exercise (optional)

YOU DID IT!!!!

Share your experience as you go and definitely at the end of your 10 weeks here or on Facebook, and feel super proud of the amazing things you’ve done for your body.  Make a note of what worked and felt great, and keep those habits up, past summer, year-round.

As always, if you feel like you need some more support getting to where you want to be, please check out my whole body transformation programs and get in touch!

[Image: Pinterest]

The Last (and Best) Diet You’ll Ever Need

Thai Sweet Potato Soup

By: Natasha Uspensky, CHHC

The traditional Ayurvedic approach to eating emphasizes when you eat as well as what you eat, and it is literally the best and healthiest key to permanent weight loss, lifelong weight management, and optimum health and digestion.  It points to the body’s ideal time for consuming the biggest meal of the day.. and it’s certainly not when most Americans think it is.

Our bodies are designed to consume the majority of the day’s calories before 3pm, when digestion is the strongest.  This means a balanced breakfast that is nourishing and filling enough to get you through to lunch without feeling hungry (and without needing that mid-morning cup of coffee or snack!).  Our bodies function best when lunch is the biggest meal of the day.  Midday is when our digestion and metabolism are the strongest, and our system is in need of nourishment and healthy calories.  So guess what?  That soup or salad just aren’t going to cut it.  Your typical light lunch is what’s responsible for your late afternoon energy crash, your high hunger levels in the evening, and your struggles with weight!  Making your lunch healthy and dinner-sized is the biggest secret for longterm weight loss, and the end to dieting forever.  This big lunch keeps you full and energized throughout the day, and keeps you from overeating in the evening, which is when calories eaten go directly to your problem areas and contribute to weight gain.  Dinner, or better yet “supper” (sharing the root of “supplemental” or “soup-like”), should be the lightest meal of the day.  Soup is the absolute ideal supper, although a salad is also great.

This way of eating certainly has history and culture on it’s side, being the traditional way of eating for many Eastern cultures, and even much of Western Europe, before eating habits and work cultures were Americanized.  But now, there is also cold, hard scientific evidence supporting it!  A new study recently published in the International Journal of Obesity proves once and for all that eating your main meal of the day in the evening contributes to weight gain.  In the study, a group of 420 overweight men and women were evaluated over five months.  During that time, half the group ate their biggest meal of the day before 3pm, while the other half ate it after 3pm.  Both groups had the same amount of exercise, ate the same amount of calories throughout the day, and got the same amount of sleep throughout the study.  Over the course of the 5 month study, the early eating group lost an average of 22 pounds, while the late eating group lost only 17 pounds.

Further supporting this evidence is a study from the University of Alabama last year, showing that eating higher fat meals in the first half of the day, and a lighter low-fat meal in the second half of the day (see The Key to Sustained Weight Loss) support longterm weight loss.  So here’s how to eat:

  • Eat three meals a day, and don’t snack.
  • Make lunch the biggest meal of the day.
  • Make breakfast big enough to get to lunch without feeling hungry.
  • Make dinner light and “supplementary.”

Even if you change nothing else about your diet, just this shift alone will give you some results!  But of course, for this to be the last and best diet you’ll ever need, you’ll want to make some changes to what you’re eating as well.

  • Eat less meat and dairy, and more low-mercury fish and healthy plant-based fats like nuts, seeds, avocados, and healthy oils.
  • Eat more vegetables!!!  Better yet, eat mostly vegetables!  They are nature’s perfect foods.
  • Eat less processed grains and flours, and more whole grains like brown rice, quinoa, millet and oats.
  • Eat less sugar.  If you need a little sweetness, get it from fruit and healthy sweeteners like stevia or raw honey, all in moderation.

Doesn’t sound so hard, does it?

Want some healthy meal ideas?  Check out What Do I Eat? Healthy Eating is Easier Than You Think!, and our Healthy Recipes database.

Reference:
Garalualet M. International Journal of Obesity, Jan 2013.
Bray M. International Journal of Obesity, Mar 2010

9 Herbs For Weight Loss

 

By: Stephanie Heino

Today we are drowning in supplements available to promote weight loss; most of them being dangerous and unhealthy. What people don’t know is that herbs can do wonder for weight weight loss, and they are all natural. Many are safe and effective in helping you lose weight without causing any side effects such as depression or other things that might occur with the processed pills available in the drugstore. But don’t think that solely consuming herbs will help you lose weight; they should be taken in conjunction with a nutritious diet and a sensible and regular exercise plan in order to succeed. Natural weight loss herbs contain tonics that boost your nervous system which makes you more capable of coping with stress and prevents you from emotional eating (one of the biggest culprits of obesity). Herbs make you feel positive and also give you the strength to exercise. They keep you feeling sated because of their high fiber content and since you don’t feel hungry, you aren’t tempted to indulge in snacks and junk food all day. Herbs therefore help you lose weight safely and effectively. Sounds amazing, right?

8 Amazing Superfoods Your Body Needs

By: Stephanie Heino

These days the term “superfoods” is being used everywhere in order to define foods that are calorie sparse and nutrient dense, meaning they pack a lot of punch for their weight as far as goodness goes. They are superior sources of anti-oxidants and essential nutrients – nutrients we need but cannot make ourselves. We all may be adding more salads and vegetables to our diets, and the concern over the quality of foods grown on mineral depleted soils makes superfoods an intelligent choice. I use superfoods daily as part of my smoothies, green juices and salads and they really give me another level of energy and I feel great and nourished all day. Keep reading for some interesting health benefits of a few of them.

Goji Berries

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Also known as lycium or Chinese wolfberries, gojis are native to the Himalayan region of China and Tibet. These small, red berries have been used by Chinese herbalists for thousands of years to help eyesight, boost immune function and promote longevity. Many of the documented health benefits of the berries are related to their high antioxidant concentration. Carotenoids, a specific type of antioxidant found in goji berries have been shown to help protect eyesight. Packed with antioxidants, B vitamins, iron, and complete protein, goji berries are certainly deserving of their superfood status! Dried goji berries make an excellent snack, and are also used in muffins, raw desserts, salads and energy bars! Although they are most often eaten in dried, whole berry form, goji berries are also available as a powder juice or supplement.

Here is a recipe to goji energy bites, which are just so delicious!

Acai Berries

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The endless health benefits of Acai should not be underestimated. They have the highest nutritional composition of anything you can eat in the world (wow) and as a result they can give the body a large number of nutritional requirements that it is typically short on.

The most significant health benefit of Acai berry is that it reintroduces nutritional elements that the bodies ought to have, but are typically just not present in our diet. Eating more of these nutrients aids the body in functioning the manner it’s supposed to. This helps the body to reach a healthy equilibrium.

Acai berry in different forms (I prefer the freeze dried powder) can be put into everything from salad dressings, smoothies and your tea. It takes some getting accustomed to. It tastes kind of like a combination of chocolate and berry. There are a multitude of ways to incorporate the health advantages of Acai as part of your nutrition plan and the advantages justify the effort. Acai berries aids in increasing your energy level and your metabolism so your body will use more calories naturally that you will discover helps you to lose weight and helps you to feel a lift in energy.

Camu Camu Fruit

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The Camu camu fruit is believed to be the world’s most abundant source of vitamin C, an antioxidant vitamin often used to strengthen the immune system. It gives you as much as 60 times more vitamin C per serving than an orange. This antioxidant-rich berry from the Amazon is also a plentiful source of potassium, calcium, protein, beta carotene, amino acids and powerful phytochemicals. The most common way to bring it into your diet is to by raw organic dried camu camu fruit powder mixed into your smoothie.

Spirulina

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Spirulina is one of the most nutritious and concentrated food sources on the planet. As a result, it’s appearing more frequently all the time in natural foods and beverages, such as green foods and drinks, energy bars and oral supplements.

Spirulina consistently boasts an amazing protein level of 60 percent on average—making it a protein source for vegans/vegetarians. And spirulina’s protein is biologically complete, containing all of the essential amino acids needed for human health. Spirulina is similar to sea vegetables such as dulse, kelp, nori, Kombu, arame, and wakame. Along with its cousin chlorella (another one of my favorites), spirulina is a member of the “blue-green” family—but this family is actually not truly algae. Check out an amazing green smoothie recipe here, containing almost every superfood in this article!

Maca Root

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I myself use maca mainly for its energy boosting effects. Many people use maca for its virility and fertility boost benefits as well. Maca is a real libido booster and people or couples who would like an enhancement in that department should start taking maca regularly. It has been described as the best natural supplement out there for virility and libido for both men & women. Women usually use maca for hot flashes, and for treating and relieving PMS symptoms. Maca works amazingly for regulating hormones. This also makes maca great for anyone with mood swings and stress in their life.

On top of all these things, maca is a nutritional powerhouse. It’s loaded with amino acids, carbohydrates, and minerals including calcium, phosphorous, zinc, magnesium, iron, as well as vitamins B1, B2, B12, C and E. It’s rich in almost every mineral! Maca is one of the most potent plant-based sources for Vitamin B12, which is great news for vegans or for people who do not eat meat. Rich in protein as well, at least 10% of the maca root weight is protein. It comes in a bunch of different forms; capsules, powder and liquid, and just like many of the other superfoods it is super easy to add to your smoothie for a great boost. If you don’t have a smoothie every morning, the capsule form may work better for you, to ensure you’re getting consistent doses every day for maximum effect!

Hemp Seeds

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Hemp seeds are of exceptionally high quality in terms of amino acid composition and protein structure, the latter affecting digestibility and utilization by the human body. Hemp protein contains all of the essential amino acids in more nutritionally significant amounts and at a ratio closer to “complete” sources of protein (like meat, milk and eggs) than all other oil seeds except soy. It is delicious to boost your morning smoothie with, or sprinkle on top of your quinoa porridge or oatmeal.

Chia Seedsimages

People are going crazy for chia seeds, which have gained attention as an excellent source of omega-3 fatty acids. They are also an excellent source of fiber at 10 grams per ounce (about 2 tablespoons), and contain protein and minerals including iron, calcium, magnesium and zinc.

Including chia seeds as part of your healthy diet may help improve cardiovascular risk factors such as lowering cholesterol, triglycerides and blood pressure. Chia seeds can be eaten raw or prepared in a number of dishes. Sprinkle ground or whole chia seeds on cereal, rice, yogurt or vegetables. The seeds are very absorbent and develop a gelatinous texture when soaked in water making it easy to mix them into cooked cereal or other dishes. So delicious! Check out this post about healthy breakfast options featuring a delicious chia seed porridge!

Bee Pollen

Bee pollen is the food of young bees and is comprised of approximately 40% protein. It is considered one of nature’s most completely bee-pollen-granules4nourishing foods. It contains nearly all nutrients required by humans. About half of its protein is in the form of free amino acids that are ready to be used directly by the body. Such highly assimilable protein can contribute significantly to one’s protein needs.

Bee pollen contains all the essential components of life, such as proteins, free amino acids, vitamins, including B-complex, and folic acid. The percentage of rejuvenating elements in bee pollen is much higher than those present in brewer’s yeast and wheat germ. Bee pollen corrects the unbalanced nutrition in the body, which is very common today since we consume so many nutritionally incomplete foods, often with added chemical ingredients, which expose us to physiological problems. I would suggest using bee pollen as part of your smoothie, delicious and healthy!

Again, check out our Organic Beauty Superfood Smoothie Recipe to incorporate many of these amazing ingredients!

[Photos: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8]