Are you looking for new ways to help manage your stress? If you answered yes, then here is a list of six super foods you will want to purchase on your next shopping trip at your local grocery store.
All of these foods are packed with natural protective substances that may help you ward off diseases, help you feel energized and improve your mood. So grab some and "get-up-and-go."
Quinoa (pronounced keenwah) - A grain-like crop grown primarily for its edible seeds. It serves up high-quality protein and plenty of fiber. The rice-like granules contain ample magnesium, potassium, zinc, vitamin E, riboflavin and more iron than true grains. Use quinoa in place of rice for a variety of main dishes or sides for your next meal.
Non-fat Greek yogurt - Provides double the protein of most regular yogurts. Also an excellent source of calcium and loaded with friendly bacteria (the "probiotics" which promote good digestion and boost immunity). Packed in easy-to-go portioned containers for a quick and nutritious burst of afternoon energy.
Edamame (green soybeans) - Typically low in fat, containing no cholesterol, and high in folate, potassium, iron and magnesium. They also contain beneficial fats, and soluble and insoluble fiber. A good source of protein, soybeans can be a healthy substitute for meat, which has more cholesterol and saturated fat. Add them to your favorite salad.
Aronia berries (also known as "chokeberries") Contain high levels of antioxidants, phenolic compounds and flavonoids characterized as anthocyanins and proanthocyanidins, providing the berry its power. The aronia berry has one of the highest recorded levels of antioxidant capacity among berries and fresh fruits. There are many products made from aronia berries ranging from salad dressing to chili starter.
Broccoli - A good source of antioxidants, fiber, electrolytes and phytonutrients. Try it fresh with your favorite hummus, or steam or roast it until crisp-tender. Available year round in the produce section.
Chia Seeds - These tiny seeds are a good plant source of omega-3 fatty acids. They are essentially flavorless and do not require grinding, making them an easy addition to your favorite dishes. Chia seeds also provide a good source of fiber and antioxidants. Add some to your favorite Greek yogurt.
Cinnamon - This common spice may help regulate blood sugar levels after meals. It may also have antioxidant effects and decrease inflammation which may be causing internal stress to your body. Sprinkle some on cooked quinoa for a power-packed breakfast.
Contact your local Hy-Vee dietitian for more ideas on how to incorporate these and many other super foods into your daily meal plan for a new-found energy level. The information is not intended as medical advice. Please consult a medical professional for individual advice.
6 servings, about 3/4 cup each
Active Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 40 minutes
All you need
1 (14 oz) can reduced-sodium chicken broth or vegetable broth
1 cup quinoa (see Tips), rinse if necessary
2 tbsp walnut oil or canola oil
1 tbsp fruity vinegar, such as pear, raspberry or pomegranate
1/4 cup snipped fresh chives
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
2 ripe but firm pears, diced
1/2 cup coarsely chopped walnuts or pecans, toasted (see Tips)
All you do
1. Bring broth to a boil in a large saucepan. Stir in quinoa, reduce heat to maintain a simmer, cover and cook until the liquid is absorbed and the quinoa has popped, about 15 minutes.
2. Meanwhile, whisk oil, vinegar, chives, salt and pepper in a large bowl. Add pears and toss to coat.
3. Drain any excess liquid from the cooked quinoa, if necessary. Add the quinoa to the pear mixture; toss to combine. Transfer to the refrigerator to cool for about 15 minutes or serve warm. Serve topped with nuts.
Per serving : 246 calories; 13 g fat; 1 g sat; 2 g mono; 0 mg cholesterol; 28 g carbohydrates; 7 g protein; 4 g fiber; 253 mg sodium; 332 mg potassium exchanges: 1 1/2 starch, 1 fruit, 2 fat
Tips: Rinsing removes any residue of saponin, quinoa's natural, bitter protective covering. Most quinoa is sold already rinsed. Check the label to see if you need to rinse before using.
To toast chopped, small or sliced nuts, cook in a small dry skillet over medium-low heat, stirring constantly, until fragrant and lightly browned, 2 to 4 minutes.
Katie Wilhelmi is a registered dietitian at the Marshall Hy-Vee Food Store.