Victoria BC Dietitian (Nutritionist) Kristen Yarker, MSc, RD Answers Are Nuts and Seeds Healthy? Or, do they contain too many calories?Read More
Recently I had a client who asked me for my nutrition game changers. She was looking for foods or habits that have made a big impact on the nutritional health of clients I’ve worked with. And, in my life too. Some may call these nutrition hacks. But I'm not a fan of that phrase.What a cool concept. Thank you Alison for asking me the question! I liked Alison’s idea so much that I’ve decided to share these ideas with you too. Starting today, once a month, I’ll be sharing with you my nutrition game changers. It might be a food (like today) or it might be a simple habit that can make a big impact in your health. I hope that you enjoy this new idea! It was easy to decide what my first nutrition game changer would be. I first started eating hemp seeds (a.k.a. hemp hearts) myself. Loving them, I’ve now introduced them to almost every client whom I work with.
Hemp Hearts: Why Do I Love Them?
Hemp hearts are a great source of plant-based protein and healthy omega-3 fat. Their mild taste, tiny size, and softer texture mean that they are less noticeable than other nuts when you add them to dishes, lending themselves well to many uses.
And, they’re grown in the Canadian prairies. So, they’re a more local choice than many nuts and seeds.
Help Hearts: How to Eat Them
These are the two most common ways that I recommend including hemp hearts:
- Hemp seeds are a great way to include protein at breakfast. As you can see in the picture, I add them to my overnight oats. Sprinkle them on your cereal or blend them into smoothies. Do you head out the door without eating breakfast? How about wolfing down 1 – 2 TBSP of these and a piece of fruit? It’s a healthy breakfast without taking the time to prepare anything.
- Add them to plain yogurt and fruit as a protein boost to your afternoon snack. Their healthy fats will also help keep your blood sugar stable and likely keep you full longer (and less likely to hit up the vending machine for junk foods).
Want to give them a try without committing to a big bag? Keep an eye open for the individual serving packages (like the ones I have in the picture). Or, browse the bulk food section at your local grocery or health food store.
Store your hemp seeds in the fridge. Like all nuts and seeds, this will keep the fats fresh and they’ll taste better.
Curious about how I can help you achieve your health and nutrition goals? Schedule a (free) call to find out.
I love that the healthy home-made popsicles trend is continuing (also known as ice-pops or paletas). Have you jumped on board? It's a fantastic way to enjoy some fruits and veggies. All these recipes are delicious. You won't believe that they have no sugar. Kids often love to help make them too. Here are 4 new home-made ice pop recipes for you to enjoy this summer. In case you're wondering why there are 4 recipes but only 3 in the picture, I ate all the banana-strawberry-orange ones before taking the photo :)
Home-Made Popsicles Directions
All the steps are the same for all home-made popsicles. And they're very easy:
- Combine ingredients in a blender.
- Blend until smooth.
- Pour into the ice-pop molds.
Home-Made Popsicles Ingredients
This simple 3 ingredient recipe is inspired by one of my childhood favourites – creamsicles. But unlike creamsicles, the only sugar in this recipe is that naturally found in orange juice.
- 1 cup coconut milk
- 1 cup orange juice
- ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
Use ripe bananas and in-season, local strawberries and these are naturally sweet – no added sugar is needed.
- 1 medium banana
- 10 strawberries
- ½ cup orange juice
Don’t let the deep green colour of this recipe discourage you. It’s my favourite of the 4 recipes here – super refreshing and subtly sweet.
- 2 cups watermelon, cubed
- 6 large spinach leaves, thick stems removed
- 2 inches cucumber, peeled and seeds removed
- ½ cup coconut water
This recipe doesn’t need to be blended. Simply juice the grapefruits and combine with the soda water in a pitcher. Pour into the molds and freeze. If you find pink grapefruits too sour, you can substitute freshly squeezed orange juice.
- 1 cup freshly squeezed pink grapefruits (approx 3 grapefruits)
- 1 cup soda water