As part of my job at the Canadian Health Food Association (CHFA) I had the pleasure of sharing the top five natural trends for 2016 during the last couple of weeks on a number of different TV, radio and print outlets. Have I mentioned how much I love what I am able to do?
At CHFA we know there are going to be some interesting health trends in 2016.
As I shared in my last post, I’m not a big believer of New Year’s resolutions, but since the New Year represents a new beginning for many, this is a great time to begin incorporating these trends into your regime.
In case you missed it, here are the top five trends and a link to a video where I share why these trends are so important on CTV Ottawa.
Move over kale, kelp is the new superfood for 2016. Packed with vitamins chlorophyll, enzymes and essential trace minerals. There are many ways to enjoy sea greens. Seaweed salad makes the perfect partner when paired with sushi or fresh fish. Kelp can be used to make delicious and nutritious soup broths. Seaweed snacks are quick and convenient and a healthy school snack for the lunch box. Or if you don’t love the flavour or texture of sea vegetables, you can sneak a bit of powered spirulina into your morning smoothie for an extra nutritional boost.
The reality is, we simply don’t get enough fibre. Although it is recommended that that women consume at least 25 grams and men 38 grams of fibre a day, many of us are falling short. Eating a diet that consists of mainly packaged and processed foods instead whole foods is often the reason.
There are lots of ways to fill up on fibre. This is good news because, eating more fibre helps us to feel fuller longer, which is important when it comes to weight management. Beans, legumes, quinoa, chia, nuts and whole grains are all good sources of fibre. Adding beans to your soup and stews. Eating your veggies with chickpea hummus. Adding chia to your smoothies or morning granola, are all good ways to sneak more fibre into your day.
Vitamin C & D
Vitamin C is especially important this time of year to help with the duration and severity of cold symptoms. When thinking about vitamin C we often think about oranges, but we can go beyond the citrus tree, many vegetables that have been grown in our backyard contain vitamin C including, red and green bell peppers, kale, broccoli, cauliflower and brussels sprouts.
Vitamin D is also extremely important, especially during the winter months when we just don’t get enough. It is difficult to find naturally in many whole foods and although it is added through fortification, the total amount we get though diet alone is quite low. Supplementation for everyone in the family is important to keep our bones and immune system strong.
Salty snacks and sweet treats – with a health kick
The good news is we don’t have to comprise taste when it comes to healthier versions of the snacks that we love. If you crave the crunch you can find options for healthier chips at your local CHFA health food store. Kale, lentils, beans or root vegetables. If you prefer a sweet treat, try raw dark chocolate or chocolate covered coconut chips. Visit chfa.ca to find your local health food store and even more tantalizing treats.
I have a confession, I’m a hemp addict. I can’t help it. It truly is hard for me to get through the day without having hemp. I love to sprinkle hemp seeds onto my oatmeal or smoothie in the morning and salad or soup at lunch. I think hemp bars or bites make the prefect snack. The best part is, this superfood is nutrient dense with an ideal omega-3 to omega-6 ratio. It is also a great source of fibre and protein and because of its nutty flavour and texture, it makes a great nut substitute, especially for those with allergies.
For more information on these trends, plus lots of other ways to stay healthy and happy throughout the year ahead, check out the CHFA blog.
Do you love hemp as much as I do? What is your favourite sweet treat with a health kick? How do you incorporate sea greens into your diet? I would love to hear your thoughts below.