Earlier this week I was on Let’s Talk Live sharing some tips on how to use foods to help combat seasonal allergies and reduce pain. Here are a few of the foods I recommend to help you feel better without reaching for the medicine cabinet:
Tart Cherries: The next time you feel a little pain after a workout, or to prevent pain in the first place reach for tart cherries. Their deep red color comes from anthocyanins which are a powerful antioxidant that helps reduce pain and inflammation. Tart cherry juice has no added sugar and is perfect for before a workout. It provides energy (carbs) to fuel you can prevent inflammation and pain. For a snack or lunch, try the Red Recharger Smoothie that’s packed with all the goodness of the cherries, plus protein from yogurt.
Pistachios: They have the most antioxidants of any nut, AND come in a generous serving of 49 kernals. Plus, who doesn’t love cracking one of these little guys open? They provide anti-inflammatory and anti-pain properties like cherries, plus heart healthy omega-3 fats which our bodies can’t make and we need to get from foods. They make the perfect snack between meals because the protein and fat adds to satiety.
Ginger: If you’re having tummy trouble and feeling a little nauseous, reach for ginger for a natural remedy. It’s delicious in teas, or as a spice in cooking. Peel it right before you use it to keep it fresher, longer. You can even peel it and freeze it in a ziploc bag so you always have some on hand. It’s great as a marinade too — just grate some peeled ginger into a bowl and whisk with a little soy sauce and corn oil, which is packed with 4 times the amount of heart healthy plant sterols as other oils. So not only will your tummy feel better, but you’ll be helping to lower your cholesterol too!
Tumeric: This spice is used widely in Indian cooking and helps combat heart burn, and helps the liver cleanse and detoxify the body. For a quick side dish, drain and rinse a can of chickpeas, and simmer with store bought Indian-flavored sauce, diced fresh or canned tomatoes, and a half-palmful of tumeric. The tumeric coats your throat, and your heartburn will be gone in no time.
Chia Seeds: That’s right….ch ch ch ch chia! They are one in the same, and you CAN eat them. They are a good source of omega-3 fatty acids and are a great vegan source of protein. They help fight pollen allergies and other impurities in our bodies. Add them to oatmeal, yogurt, or your favorite smoothie for a ton of nutrition and a slight nutty flavor.
I hope these foods will inspire you to reach in your fridge instead of your medicine cabinet the next time you’re feeling a little achy!