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Focusing on "Super-Foods" - how to incorporate things?

post #1 of 22
Thread Starter 

Hi everyone. :)  First off, a bit about me, and why we're doing this now. I'm 30, and realizing more than ever how important it is to care for my body so I can continue to live a long and healthy life.  Hubby and I are both in good health, and want to stay that way.  I'm almost 12 weeks pregnant, and have noticed a wonderful difference since I started eating more healthfully after I found out I was pregnant.  We have two daughters - our youngest is very healthy (age 6).  Our oldest (age 10) has a lot of health problems - epilepsy, autism, development delays, sleep problems, digestive issues, etc.  It has taken us until now to be able to get our oldest eating a wider variety of foods (long story but she was failure-to-thrive for many years because she couldn't/wouldn't eat).  Now that she is eating better foods like salads and smoothies, I really want to put the focus on eating as healthfully as possible for her.  She is a vegetarian, though the rest of us are not. 


SO... here's what I want to do, I'm thinking. 


I have been doing some research on "Super Foods" and what seems to have the most "bang for your buck" so to speak.  Because my oldest daughter's diet is so limited, I really want to find ways to incorporate things into her current diet that are incredibly healthy for her.  Ultimately, I will be making these changes for all of us, but my focus is finding ways to help her be as healthy as possible, given her problems both health wise, and with eating. 


She loves things like spaghetti, salad, smoothies, sandwiches (PBJ, etc), cereal, waffles or pancakes, etc.  I know I can do a lot with those food groups, and even work toward gluten free (with gluten free pasta, cereal, almond flour to make pancakes, etc).  I'm planning to use some pre-made things like the Odowalla juice with Spirulina, which she loves, and put it into a smoothie with raw cacao powder, and some other fresh fruits and veggies.  She loves smoothies so I think that will work well.  I want to see about putting some Acai in there as well to help with her sleep problems,  I will be cooking with coconut oil whenever I can to help get good fats and help boost metabolism in all of us.  I want to start using raw honey as much as possible as well for all of the amazing benefits the bees can give us. We also put flax seeds in everything for the fiber and essential fatty acids. 


I have started a garden so we can have fresh, organic fruits and vegetables.  I will also be preserving any excess so we can eat them long after garden season is over. 


Supplements I am planning on are a really good multi-vitamin, a good multi-mineral, and a probiotic.  I'm not sure what probiotics might work best.  


So... those are some of the major changes we're going to be making.  Any other suggestions or ideas that have worked really well for you?  

post #2 of 22

Sounds like you're doing a lot of good stuff. 


I also add chia seeds to stuff (similar to flax.) I alternate the two of them to expand our nutrients.


I use avocado oil and macadamia oil because they have higher smoke points than olive or coconut oil. http://theconsciouslife.com/omega-3-6-9-ratio-cooking-oils.htm


Almond flour is great. Lots of recipes at http://www.elanaspantry.com/





post #3 of 22

I have started eating like a super lady. :)


I put avocados with everything because they are SO good for you and high in fiber. I put raw ones along side my eggs, put them in salads and also in smoothies. I mix greens and carrots in our smoothies as well as hemp powder which is AMAZING!


I also basically just try to eat colorful fruits and vegetables at every meal. Yesterdays lunch was a kale salad with chopped up kale, purple cabbage, avocados, smoked salmon and balsamic vinegar on top. A grapefruit with coconut sugar on the side. It tasted amazing and felt so good.


Anyway, I hope that I am of some help. Good luck!

post #4 of 22

Oh, I also fry and bake with only coconut oil.

post #5 of 22

Chia Pudding. Tastes similar to tapioca pudding, but no cooking required and really easy to make. Chia is high in protein and Omega 3's.


To make a Chia pudding, mix 2/3 cup Chia seeds with 2 Cups "Milk" (Almond, Cashew, Soy, Rice, Hemp, Cow Milk, etc). Whisk for a few minutes. Add vanilla and sweetener to taste. (Stevia, Brown Rice Syrup, Maple Syrup, Agave, Honey, etc.)


Chill in fridge.

post #6 of 22

I also wanted to add that with every meal I add fruits or veggies. My breakfast yoghurt has to have berries or cherries.


Last night we had a dinner of whole wheat orzo and chicken and even though there is a salad on the side I also mixed broccoli, kale, tomatoes and kalmata olives to my plate...which also means that I cut down on the main course to make room for veggies. It is amazing!


Instead of two eggs with toast I have one egg with spinach, tomatoes and avocados all mixed together. No cheese unless it is goats. Cows cheese is a treat for me these days. It weighs me down.

post #7 of 22

Great thread! I was wondering if anyone has done raw foods/super foods while being pregnant.  I have digestive woes and always feel better when eating smoothies, but then have major cravings for carbs and proteins but usually feel bloated and uncomfortable after eating them.


A friend is sending me some chia seeds.  I'll have to try that pudding recipe!



post #8 of 22

QUINOA! Flax oil, nutritional yeast....yum!

post #9 of 22

I second the vote for quinoa. It would be easy to add to a lot of the things your dd likes without her noticing the difference. A couple of times a week I cook a cup of quinoa and just store it in the fridge so I can add it to things like smoothies, salads, the batter for baked goods, into soups and pasta sauces. You don't have to add a lot into any one serving of something for her intake to be high throughout the day.

post #10 of 22

I make a quick quinoa salad: cook up your quinoa (takes 10-15 minutes), let it cool. Mix in a can of chick peas/garbanzos (rinsed), and TONS of veggies and herbs, like red pepper, peas, parsley, onion, corn, kale.....basically whatever you have. Then mix the whole thing with equal parts lemon juice and olive oil, and salt and pepper. Healthy and so yummy....especially if you use crunchy veggies!!

post #11 of 22
Originally Posted by youngspiritmom View Post

I make a quick quinoa salad: cook up your quinoa (takes 10-15 minutes), let it cool. Mix in a can of chick peas/garbanzos (rinsed), and TONS of veggies and herbs, like red pepper, peas, parsley, onion, corn, kale.....basically whatever you have. Then mix the whole thing with equal parts lemon juice and olive oil, and salt and pepper. Healthy and so yummy....especially if you use crunchy veggies!!


I do something similar to this - no chickpeas, and I always use the same veggies (red & yellow bell peppers, grated carrot, kale, onion, garlic and ginger). I dress it with lemon juice and coconut oil, with just a pinch each of ground coriander and curry powder. I may try adding the chickpeas. I never thought of that, but I love them.



ETA: My veggie choice is largely aesthetic. I take this to a biweekly homelearning meetup, and I like the mix of colours. I tend to use more kale than anything, and chop it quite small, because it's so much darker than anything else in the salad. But, I like the brightness of the peppers and carrots as an accent.

post #12 of 22

Great recipes, I love the idea of putting quinoa in a smoothie, Shantimama - what kind of smoothie - can you share a recipe?


I made a great salad yesterday. Here's what I made:


Arame seaweed (soak over night then rinse and drain - this way you don't have to cook it to get it soft)

Pumpkin seeds (soaked over night as well so their nice and soft to digest

Beluga Lentils

Organic Baby Spinach leaves

Grated carrots and zucchini (i grated them in the food processor)

Diced Cucumbers

Chopped Spring onions

Cherry Tomatoes cut in half



Simple dressing of sesame oil, rice vinegar, lemon juice and sea salt and pepper to taste.


It was yummalicious!


Another thing I made - perhaps it is a super food - Nettles

I juiced:

Nettles (from the garden - high in vitamins)


then put it in a blender to make a smoothie with:

1 avocado

2 pears

and a bit o' water.


YUMMY and soothing

post #13 of 22

BUMP :) Lovin this thred

post #14 of 22


post #15 of 22

I have recently started thinking along these lines as well, having re-read Eat to Live, watching Forks over Knives, etc.


We make that chia pudding - it's great for breakfast! There is a yummy pudding you can make with soft tofu and semi-sweet chocolate: http://chefinyou.com/2011/03/tofu-chocolate-pudding/ (you really can't taste the tofu). Another yummy (GF) dessert: black bean brownies. Flax can also be used to make "flax eggs" for baking - google "flax egg" or vegan baking sites. Nutritional yeast is great on popcorn (we do put butter on it, but I often mix that 50-50 with olive oil). We buy the Barilla Plus pasta that has legume flour in it as well. It's not as grainy as whole wheat and when you get used to it, it tastes better than the regular. Out of the gluten-free pastas, Tinyada brown rice pasta is good, and there is also a pretty good corn spaghetti (Ms. Leapers?), but ít's softer than regular (or seems that way after the Barilla Plus).


One thing I am finding is that if you are eating fruit and vegetable-based meals, the portion sizes can be (sometimes much) bigger, for example, my lunch salad is made in a medium-sized mixing bowl.

post #16 of 22

I second the suggestion of checking Elana's Pantry however, you might look into some paleo recipes. Lots of super food ideas there.


post #17 of 22

Happywoman.. Thank you for the chia pudding recipe!  That is awesome

post #18 of 22

I am obsessed with a huge kale salad with Braggs apple cider dressing, avocado, cucumber, beets, chia seeds, and carrots. 

post #19 of 22

Hey there I feel the same way and am making healthy changes in our life as well. I actually started a blog about healthy lifestyle ideas and healthy smoothies http://homemomsandhealth.blogspot.com/. I love these smoothies because you can get fruits and vegetable into your kids with no fuss! My daughter has digestive issues and these green smoothies help her sooooo much. Making smoothies is one of the best way to get super foods in your diet :) I use spinach, carrots, cucumbers, and parsley, but you can add collard greens or kale instead but they are a bit stronger in flavor so add extra fruit :)

post #20 of 22

Since this thread came back up, I'll also mentiont that I've been making a veggie dip with yogurt. I add herbs to taste, but I also stir in a whack of chia seeds. If I remember to make the dip ahead of time, it thickens up nicel - if I don't, it's still tasty.

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