About two years ago, we made some major life changes in my family. My children were having recurring health issues and needing my presence much more in the day to day, so I finished my job as a teacher at a local school and came home to be a homeschool mom for the second time. (The first time was a disaster…more on that another time!) I researched and compiled lists of foods and cross-referenced necessary nutrients and vitamins like any good enneagram type 1. I was going to make this nutrient thing an efficient science. What were the least amount of foods with the highest amount of needed nutrients and vitamins for my people’s specific needs? I embarked on this quest to solve the problems of our brains and our bodies with good nutrition. I was not confident that I would be great at it, but I was going to make an effort.
There are several great foods to eat, I discovered, but if you can eat any one thing, eat eggs! They are full of vitamins, minerals, nutrients, and antioxidants, and they’re tasty! What’s not to love? BUT adding more than a few new foods to our family diet all at once was going to be a challenge for my kids but MOSTLY a challenge for my husband, who likes the food that he likes and prefers not to try new ones, thank you very much! SO, I also researched and found that there are a lot of ways to just add good nutrients to your main foods WITHOUT your kids and your husband noticing(wink wink).
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Ground flax seed meal is one of my favorite food additives because flax seed adds vitamins, minerals, and fiber, all in one. I use it sprinkled into cinnamon roll dough, added into rolls, breads, and smoothies. It thickens with a liquid and can be used as an egg substitute (if you’re desperate) or added to a sauce. Some people even sprinkle it over cereal or yogurt as a topping. It produces a wonderful nutty flavor and is very slight and inconspicuous. A word of caution though, make sure it is GROUND flax seed or your children (and your husband!) will begin to sit up and take notice. Side Note:
Chia seeds are also a totally awesome additive to just about anything , but they are more noticeable in food due to their color and density.
My second favorite food additive is …
Nutritional yeast. Anything savory, especially something that you want to add a little cheesy flavor for, this works pretty well. I started using it when we became Orthodox and vegan food became a reality in our lives about half of the year. Nutritional yeast adds a ridiculous amount of B VITAMINS and if used sparingly, it can really boost cheesy flavor for normally bland foods like potatoes. You can even use it to make a cheesy vegan sauce that is delicious! ( https://watchlearneat.com/vegan-cheese-sauce/)
My third favorite food added to my nutrient rich life is chocolate! You got it, chocolate…but not just any chocolate, chocolate made from
Cacao powder . This has AMAZING health benefits in the right now and in the future. It is full of amazing antioxidants and can even help reduce the risk of future heart attacks…seriously awesome. It contains iron, protein, magnesium, potassium, and fiber. Just substitute cacao powder for your regular cocoa powder in any recipe, it’s that easy! Note of warning: Cacao powder is a little more bitter than cocoa powder due to its retention of healthy nutrients, so make sure that you adjust the sweeteners accordingly for your sweet tooth.
And the fourth favorite additive that I will leave you with, and probably the best by far, is HONEY. You can eat it AND use it as a topical ointment for your skin… how amazing is that? In my house, many times I sub honey for half the sugar in a recipe and NO ONE NOTICES! (Hopefully they will not read this post and see all my secret tricks revealed!) Seriously, no one notices, so sometimes I add ONLY honey for sugar, a 1 to 1 ratio. (Hehehe!) This stuff is amazing, and it definitely helps my kids with allergy problems by getting local honey made from local bees and local pollens! I am not adding a link for honey, because I believe that buying local honey is best. However, if you live near the Shreveport area, I suggest buying honey from Greenwood Feed, Seed, and Hardware http://www.greenwoodfeed.com/ and supporting a local business or searching the internet for honey farms in your area, like Hummer and Sons in Bossier, LA. https://hummerandsonhoney.com/, or BUCKLEY honey farm in Shreveport. https://www.facebook.com/BUCKLEYHONEY. You will be supporting a local business and helping your health all in one, so easy!
Now that I have shared how to add more nutrients to the foods that we are already eating, the next step is to add vitamins…dum da dum dum dah!
Part 2…Coming soon!