Monday, December 16, 2013

Health Food of the Day - Goji Berries

I don't know about you but I am going to need some serious detox after all of the eating and drinking I've been doing. I feel like I've had a holiday party every night and my body is taking a toll. As many of you know, I prefer to add good things to my diet instead of taking things out (not always the best route but gotta start somewhere!) Goji berries are gaining popularity and with such great health benefits, and Gwyneth supporting them, why shouldn't they?? Goji berries, or wolfberries, have been around a long time and are native of China. They have a sort of chewy/crunchy texture that are similar to craisins with a little more crunch (if you get the sun-dried kind). Some of the numerous health benefits include:

+Filled with antioxidants
+Compounds rich in vitamin A, C and E
+Lots of fiber to keep you full
+Contain 15x more iron than spinach
+Full of carotenoids like beta-carotene (seen in carrots) and lycopene (seen in tomatoes).
+Some research suggests goji berries can help increase metabolism and boost energy levels.


 via

I like to soak the berries overnight and put in a smoothie with a banana, acai powder, almond milk, ice cubes and a touch of honey. They are also great on salads and in yogurt bowls. I've even recently seen goji berry infused vodka (which looks amazing...). 

If you live in NYC, try Hu Kitchen's kale salad with goji berries, which is literally kale, goji berries and a yummy dressing or try their amazinggg "mash bar." I like my mash with chocolate chia pudding, cashew butter, almond butter, puffed quinoa bits, strawberries, bananas, goji berries and chocolate syrup - YUM! Probably more calories than going to Pinkberry but at least it's healthier...

Superfood Breakfast Bowl via Camille Styles

Ingredients
  • 1/2 cup of quinoa
  • 1 1/2 cups water
  • 1/2 cup coconut milk
  • 2 dried merjool dates (more for added sweetness), seeds removed and chopped
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/8 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/8 teaspoon cardamon
  • 2 tablespoons pepitas
  • 1 tablespoon shredded coconut
  • 1 tablespoon golden raisins
  • goji berries, chia seeds, banana and coconut flakes, to garnish
Recipe
  1. Rinse quinoa until water runs clear and combine in a medium sauce pan with water, coconut milk, and dates.
  2. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to low and simmer for 15 minutes, or until quinoa has started to soften.
  3. Add cinnamon, nutmeg, cardamon, pepitas, shredded coconut and golden raisins.
  4. Cook an additional five minutes, adding water if necessary, until quinoa and soft and fully cooked.
  5. Serve hot and topped with banana, goji berries, chia seeds, and coconut flakes. Add maple syrup or honey to sweeten further if you’d like!

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