The Health Food Powders You Need In Your Pantry.

I am a health food addict, I can easily spend over an hour in any health food shop just reading all the ingredients and powders to find out what is good for me and the benefits food can give my body. For me, healthy eating is so important, because it makes me feel good and confident; also it tastes really good.
So today I have compiled a list of some of my favourite health food powders that I feel make a difference to my everyday life. I have done some research into these to offer you key information on what these powders are all about. However, PLEASE do your own research if you want to introduce them to your diet, as I am not a healthcare professional.*

Raw Cacao Powder

I love Cacao and have used the powder for many years in baking, smoothies and as a base to warm drinks. Apart from its raw chocolaty taste, it has been proven to be a mood improver due to containing anandamide which brings on feelings of euphoria. It also has a very high ORAC score which shows it has high antioxidant levels. Antioxidants are integral to our health as they increase our immunity to colds and flu, improve digestion, energy and sleep as well as improve circulation (which promotes the reduction of inflammation and cellulite).
Cacao also contains calcium, iron, zinc and potassium; cacao also contains Magnesium which helps with the absorption of calcium. It also assists with an increased metabolism which helps with weight loss and increased digestion leading to overall elevated energy levels.

Calcium

As touched on above, calcium is essential for our body’s health. At the core, it helps build strong bones! To have strong bones is so important, especially as we age as it reduces the risks of both arthritis and osteoporosis. Having strong bones also helps reduce back pain and allows us to live a life of free movement and activity (we all want to be strong and stable!). Calcium is something I am passionate about because I am deficient, so I am focused on rebuilding my calcium levels so I can be strong and healthy. There has also been a lot of research that has shown calcium plays a role in controlling or preventing high blood pressure.
So if you are allergic to dairy, vegan or are concerned about your calcium levels, calcium powder is such an important additive to your diet. The one I use is Green Nutritionals Pure Plant Source Green Calcium, and it is tasteless, so I put it in anything and everything I can think of including, smoothies, oats, hot chocolates, soups etc.

Pea Protein

I use Pea Protein because I’m allergic to dairy so Whey Protein isn’t an option. I use Tropekas’ Lean Protein in Vanilla. This protein and other high-quality Pea Proteins help build lean muscle and assist with toning and muscle recovery. So it is ideal to have post workout to help feed your body the nutrients it needs to build and repair muscle, so you get the most out of your workout. Protein is also renowned for keeping you fuller for longer meaning satisfied cravings and hunger. Additionally, multiple sources of research have discovered that Pea Protein offers a similar protein source that eggs supply; making it a great, healthy and easily digestible protein alternative.

Wheatgrass

Wheatgrass is probably my least favourite out of all of the health powders in my life due to the taste. But the benefits it offers forces me to look past this, and once I mix it into a smoothie, the taste almost disappears. To begin, Wheatgrass is high in Chlorophyll which helps cleanse, alkalise and improve energy levels. Chlorophyll also acts as an antibacterial in the body making it a natural healer. Wheatgrass also contains an extremely wide variety of vitamins and is rich in proteins containing amino acids. Additionally, the Chlorophyll property in Wheatgrass helps with neutralising body odours and controlling blood sugar levels. And with its detoxifying properties, Wheatgrass can help with increased energy levels, weight loss, improved digestion and improved circulation.

Baobab Powder

Baobab Powder is my newest discovery out of all the powders in this article, but I am thrilled I have discovered it as it has so many health properties. To begin, it is high in Vitamin C, which promotes healthy skin, increased immune function and energy levels. It also assists with the absorption of iron and contains Prebiotics that assist with healthy digestion and promotes gut health. I use Green Nutritionals Organic African Baobab.

I use all of the above in my daily smoothies and sprinkle them on top of granola or coconut yoghurt. Despite my research and experience with these powders, it is essential to use and consume what feels right for you and your body. It is so important to do your own research because I am not a healthcare professional and you must ensure you are eating what’s right for you.*

Talk Soon,
Jess xx

* all research and information in this post has been done by myself and I have incorporated these foods into my diet accordingly. Please ensure you read your own articles before introducing these into your daily routine. 

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Reforming My View On Fitness.

In school, I wanted to be skinny; I wanted that Instagram bikini body and I thought the only way to get that was cardio and minimal eating, this is indeed not the case! Focusing on building muscle and strength was not part of my workout routines ever, as I always thought I would bulk out and lose a lean figure.

So in my senior years of school when I began to get more of a routine, I was just doing cardio, and I ate clean. Did I lose weight? Yeah, I did. What I thrilled with how my body looked? No. Why? Because I wasn’t toned and I wasn’t strong at all. I struggled with bad posture, weak knees and a shoulder injury which was in the limbo zone of improvement.

The moment I realised how important strength was for physical health was when I was sitting in a shoulder surgeons office hearing that I would have to get shoulder surgery to fix my right shoulder.

*quick flash back*

In 2015 I was in rehearsals for a show. It was a children’s show, so it was high energy and very physical. When we were doing a warm up, I was distracted, and someone came up and hit my arm upwards (it was part of the game). With the hit, my arm went straight up and around, forcing my shoulder to pull a full 360. And what I found out later was that my shoulder dislocated, pulling my ligaments and then returning to its position. This effects of this incident were worsened by me being double jointed and already having weak joints.

So fast forward to mid-2016, and here I was, being given three months with a Physio to improve my condition or it was under the knife for me. I was determined not to have surgery. It would mean I wouldn’t be able to use my dominant arm for over six months recovery; therefore meaning I’d not be able to work, drive, write or work out. Also, I had an overseas trip planned, in which this surgery would have inhibited me from doing heaps of fun activities while away.

So I began physio, and it was hard and painful, but I slowly got better. And I started to realise that my strength was building and this strength was healing and protecting my weak shoulder. A few months later, I was cleared by the physio for surgery and to this day, by maintaining my strength, my shoulder has gone from 40% to 85% (it’s still not 100% perfect).

But how have I maintained this strength? With Pilates and it has changed my view on fitness and taking care of my body. My mum had been going a local studio for about six months and was enjoying it. So after I graduated high school and had more time on my hands and more money from being able to work more, I thought I’d give it ago. And honestly, after the first session, I was hooked. Within the first few weeks of doing pilates regularly, I noticed I was getting stronger, and I felt great. My shoulder pain was further reduced, and the weight I could handle was increasing.

What I love most about it is that in the 45 minutes you’re in a class for, you get a whole body workout; your legs, abs, arms, back, booty is all taken care of. You honestly will not believe the burn you get and the post workout muscle pain you feel until you try Pilates for yourself. It targets muscles I never knew I had and I leave sweaty after every session; despite their being super cold air conditioning. I have toned up so much since starting pilates, and despite the increase in muscle, I have maintained a lean physique.

Last year, I didn’t enjoy workouts, I did them because I felt obligated to lose weight. But now my mindset has been transformed, and I have fallen in love with being fit, strong and healthy. And I love working out; I look forward to my class. Every session I’m doing a different workout, and I can feel my body getting stronger with every move. I highly recommend trying Pilates for yourself and seeing AND feeling the differences.