Food is meant to be celebrated! Since ancient times, food has been a gift from the earth, bursting with super-nutrients and delicious flavors. The traditional calendar indicated that celebrations, such as harvest festivals and seasonal merriments, were in-tune with spring equinoxes and summer solstices. People would feast on what the earth had given them – produce that was in season – local and fresh. This is particularly true for the traditional Chinese calendar where holidays such as New year (Spring festival) are an essential part of harvests or prayer offerings, and also the agricultural calendar festivals such as Jie Qi and Qing Ming.
The festive season right now is no different. It should be a time of fun and family, and with that comes delicious food. However, we have somehow equated “delicious” with processed, high fat, and high-sugar cakes, pastries and an abundance of saturated fatty meats. Ready meals, convenience-based pies and hams, and pre-packaged goodies that are intensely sweetened, salted, and laden with preservatives and colorings are the norm. We barely recognize the food we eat.
We certainly still want to enjoy the foods that are a traditional part of our cultural or local holiday celebrations but without all the harmful additives. Can we change our focus this holiday season? Instead of feeling guilty about all the things we shouldn’t eat, can we feast on powerful superfoods that taste yummy, too? Is there anything we can do differently this year to keep our energy levels up and our health glowing? As affiliates in the Wayal business, sharing the finest health products and knowledge with your clients, what better way to set an example than to incorporate a super-healthy lifestyle for yourself!
The festive season is adorned with everything green and red, so why not apply this theme by adding wonderful green and red superfoods to your diet and to your table? This holiday season, we can feel good inside and out by including these colorful nutrient ‘power packs’ to give us an all-round energy boost.
Superfoods are a rich source of nutrients, packed with vitamins, minerals, antioxidants and essential fats that are remarkably beneficial for your health. They are thought to help prevent heart disease and cancer, as well as protect your body from cellular breakdown and damage. Did you know that many superfoods that are so popular throughout the West today are originally from China? Green tea, Bok Choi and Goji berries are frequently ranked as some of the best.
In a season filled with turkeys, fatty pork and ham, champagne, and rich desserts, rescue your body from the food-induced comas by adding these five festive, green and red superfoods to your table.
Red & Green Superfoods
Bokchoy (or pak choi) is almost too good to be true. Filled with high levels of omega-3 fatty acids, as well as vitamins A, B, C and K, it also packs a punch full of protein. Although all the green veggies, including spinach and collards, are excellent for your health, research shows that bokchoy as well as kale has even more powerful preventive effects than its other green leafy counterparts. It may also play a role in the prevention of heart disease and the reduction of risk for age-related eye diseases.
Tip: Throw a large handful of bokchoy or kale along with a banana, some almond milk and a scoop of peanut butter for an energizing and festive green morning smoothie before you indulge in all the delicacies of the holiday.
Cranberries are astringent small fruits loaded with unique phytochemicals, such as proanthocyanidins and phenolic acids, which support almost every major organ system in the body. Eating more cranberries may help improve cardiovascular health and digestive health while fighting inflammation. Just be aware that many of the commercial brands have lots of added sugar.
Tip: Try using pure, cranberry juice or make your own to add a tart kick to a salad dressing or for your roast meat. And for dessert, bake whole cranberries into your favorite healthy treats.
Avocados deserve a special place amongst the superfood list. High in fiber, folate, potassium, vitamin E, and magnesium, avocados are an excellent substitute for butter and margarines during the festive season. Because of their high percentage of healthy monounsaturated or ‘good’ fat, avocados may help lower cholesterol levels. With their numerous healthy fats and nutrients, avocados also have a powerful healing effect on heart and brain cells.
Tip: Slice them over your salads or make your own homemade guacamole rather than purchasing the store-bought versions that are filled with added synthetic fats and preservatives.
A welcomed addition to your festive superfood list is red wine. The phytochemical in red wine, resveratrol, is thought to be the most powerful naturally occurring superfood. But remember: although it’s the holiday season, drink responsibly and in moderation. Once you consume more than one to two glasses of wine, the toxic effects of excess alcohol will undo all of the healthful properties and begin to harm all parts of the body. For that reason it is best to get your dose of Resevertrol from the fabulous Andorralife supplement.
Did you know that long before it became the symbol of New Zealand or was farmed abundantly in California, the humble kiwifruit originated from China known first as the Chinese Gooseberry? It offers a rich and abundant source of antioxidants and acts as a powerful anti-inflammatory agent in the body. On top of being an excellent source of vitamin C, kiwifruits contain very high percentages of fiber, vitamin E and essential minerals including iron, magnesium and zinc.
Tip: Peel, slice and add fresh kiwis to your Christmas salads and fruit platters or just throw one or two into your morning cereal to energize your body!
Add more festive colors to your holiday meals this season with red and green superfoods! Naturally red foods, like tomatoes, contain high levels of antioxidants such as lycopene. Chinese goji berries and red dates have been used by Chinese herbalists for millennia to help eyesight, boost immune function, and to promote longevity. Green foods, especially green tea are also rich in antioxidants, along with detoxifying and cleansing properties to help you feel great from the inside out. So go on – enjoy the wine in moderation, eat plenty of super festive superfoods, make the holiday season a meaningful one and of course… be merry!