The most super of superfoods to beat the winter blues
With shorter chilly days, winter can leave some of us feeling a bit blue. It’s also cold and flu season which can also make you feel less than your cheerful self. Here’s some of our favourite supportive superfoods to add to your healthy home cooking repertoire to help take the chill out of winter and nourish both body and soul.
Elderberries have been known and used for thousands of years for their antiviral, antibacterial and immune supportive properties. Many clinical studies have shown positive results for a reduction in symptoms and duration of respiratory illnesses such as colds and flus and other seasonal ailments. Due to the high levels of antioxidants, elderberries have anti-inflammatory effects and may also improve mood and brain function. Packed with winter's favourite essential, vitamin C, it's easy to include a teaspoon of magical elderberry in your daily seasonal wellness routine. Try adding it to your daily herbal tea, or mix into a hot drink with ginger, lemon and honey. You can also make elderberry gummies or a healing elderberry syrup in the same way you would using whole elderberries. Use 2/3 cup Elderberry Powder to 3 cups of water and add cinnamon and ginger for their warming and therapeutic benefits. Our wild certified organic elderberries are collected from Eastern Europe where they grow in abundance and are sustainably harvested.
Maca is known to balance hormone health, and we all know how unruly hormones can affect our emotional and physical health. Being an adaptogen, maca helps support our resilience during stressful times. It also balances the endocrine system to help support hormone balance and overall health. Studies suggest maca can support a healthy libido (very helpful in keeping warm!) in both men and women. Maca’s nutrient rich profile also contains many beneficial phytonutrients for overall health and wellbeing. Try rolling some maca into your energy balls, pop a spoonful in your smoothie or blend into your winter hot chocolate. The malty nutty flavours of our Raw and Gelatinised Maca are the perfect partner to anything you make with cacao. Or try our Maca Smoothie - a 50:50 blend of organic maca and cacao.
One of nature’s finest mood foods, cacao contains many natural mood enhancing compounds such as serotonin, dopamine, anandamide, tryptophan and oxytocin. These neurotransmitters are released when we eat cacao. Cacao also contains theobromine which is a gentle brain stimulant that can have positive effects on our mood, as well as magnesium, iron and polyphenols all known to support feel good feelings which can often be lower in winter. So now you have good reasons backed by science to make a warming winter dessert or cosy hot chocolate. The best way to include stress busting cacao’s goodness in your winter diet is with a rich indulgent hot chocolate, made with cacao powder or ceremonial cacao paste, added to breakfast oats, snacking on cacao nibs or using cacao powder or butter in a raw or baked treat. Cacao Butter is considered a healthy fat which also supports brain health. Try using unrefined sugars such as Coconut Sugar, maple syrup, rice malt syrup or Lucuma Powder when sweetening your cacao creations, to best support your gut and winter health.
Camu Camu Berry Powder
Vitamin C powerhouse camu camu is your best friend this winter. This tangy superberry from Peru is bursting with antioxidants and is one of the highest vitamin C foods on the planet. (over 50 x that of oranges). Vitamin C is essential for robust immune function as well as collagen production, cognition, memory, stress and anxiety, sleep quality, the absorption of iron and more! We love it stirred into juice or in a warm citrus elixir with ginger and turmeric or even added to a raw sweet treat like these truffles. Studies show vitamin C is better absorbed via food rather than supplementation and camu camu is a delicious and super easy way to include it in your daily winter routine.
Maqui Berry Powder
Containing the highest antioxidants of any fruit, maqui berry is a super nutritious and versatile berry to add to your winter diet. Antioxidants have protective qualities for the brain and have been shown to boost energy, improve immunity and increase cognition and memory. Some of our favourite recipes for including maqui in your diet include a raw slice and chocolate coated maqui bliss balls. We also recommend stirring a spoonful into your breakfast cereal, juice, yoghurt or daily smoothie for a burst of brain loving anthocyanins. To maintain the high antioxidants it’s best not to heat Maqui Powder.
For more recipes head to our recipes page and search under categories, or check out our Instagram or Facebook page.
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