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Superfood

Have you ever heard of the benefits of apple cider vinegar?

The magic liquid is said to promote weight loss, improve heart health, control blood sugar, help digestion and strengthen your bones and teeth, and it turns out even Jennifer Aniston is a fan

While some clean eating advocates recommend drinking a shot of ACV first thing in the morning, our commitment to a healthy lifestyle isn't strong enough to put ourselves through this. We just prefer coffee. 

There are actually many ways you can introduce ACV in your diet, so here are a few ideas.

1. In a salad dressing

ACV can be used as a tasty salad dressing. Whisk 1 tsp mustard with 2 tbsp ACV, add 3 tbsp olive oil, salt and pepper. Whisk well and drizzle on your favourite salad!

2. In a smoothie

In a blender, add a handful of spinach, 1 frozen banana, a handful of frozen blueberries, a pinch of grated ginger, 1 tbsp almond butter, 1 tbsp ACV and a splash of almond milk. Blitz and enjoy!

3. In hummus

Rinse and drain 1 can of chickpeas and place in a food processor with 1 garlic clove, 30ml olive oil, 2 tbsp ACV, 1 tbsp tahini, 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper and salt to taste. Blend until smooth. 

To get a looser texture, add a couple tbsp of cold water. 

4. In a healthy ketchup

Combine 200g tomato puree with 4 tbsp maple syrup, 2 tbsp ACV, 1 tsp onion powder, 1 tsp garlic, 1 tsp oregano, salt and pepper to taste. Use as a dip for your favourite chips!

 

5. In guacamole

ACV can conveniently replace lime in guacamole.

Mash two avocados, add 1/4 red onion finely diced, 1 tbsp olive oil, 1 to 2 tbsp ACV, 1 crushed garlic clove, 1/4 tsp red pepper flakes, 1 tbsp chopped coriander, salt and pepper. 

 

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While many people don’t understand why anyone would want to go vegan, most of us can admit that the movement has led to the creation of some very inventive foods.

And as impressive as Vegan Chocolate Lasagne and No-Bake Peanut Butter Bars are, they aren’t quite as mesmerising to look at as the vegan Smurf Latte.

According to Refinery 29, Smurf Lattes are a beautiful blue beverage made from E3 live blue algae powder, lemon, ginger, agave and coconut milk.

This striking blue beverage's unique colour comes from the naturally derived superfood blue algae (rather than any artificial substance) and is available from Matcha Mylkbar in Melbourne.

The café’s owner Nic Davidson told Mashable that the drink has a “sweet and soury” kind of taste due to the agave and lemon ingredients and since the Smurf Latte was first featured on Instagram requests for the beverage have been flying in. 

Given that it looks this cool, we aren't surprised.

 

 

 

 

 

Testing out the colours of the rainbow lattes #smurflatte @matcha_mylkbar #tumeric #bluealgae #beetroot #matcha

A photo posted by Elyse Knowles (@elyseknowlzy) on

 

 

 

 

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Blueberries, quinoa, nut milk, goji berries… it seems like almost anything these days can be touted as "superfood" if it offers enough benefits, but the latest addition to the list really caught our attention.

If you're looking for a protein-packed drink that won't cause the same health issues as standard cow's milk, then you may want to give camel milk a go.

Before you get all grossed out, it's worth noting that camel milk is paleo friendly, full of essential amino acids and fatty acids, and offers many of the benefits of cow's milk while being much more easily digested and containing half the fat content. It doesn't come cheap, with online suppliers currently selling it for anything from €8 – €27 per 500ml, as camels produce just 5 – 6 litres of milk per day.

But the most important part? It (apparently) tastes great, offering a "smooth, sweet and light" taste that is different to the heavy creaminess of cow's milk, according to UK company and camel milk supplier MuscleFood. If you're not a fan of the taste of milk in general, camel milk is also available in flavoured form, with strawberry, chocolate and even saffron flavours all on the market from various companies.

As for celebrity fans, the ultimate trendsetter Kim Kardashian herself even tried a glass on a trip to Bahrain a couple of years back – and we have to admit it looks tasty:

While camel milk can still only be purchased online and is not yet widely available for purchase in Ireland, it is growing rapidly in popularity and it's only a matter of time before an Irish company jumps on the bandwagon.

With the milk not only being produced in the Middle East but not also on European farms, camel milk is no longer the obscure product it once was. For now, if you're keen, certain UK companies can deliver directly to Ireland.

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When was the last time you actually saw someone slip on a banana peel? Unless you’re watching an awful lot of old-school cartoons (no judgement here), then we doubt you’ve seen that happen in a while.

Probably because people are stocking up on banana peels as their new go-to food to help them with their weight-loss.

The banana peel is a staple in many Indian and Caribbean dishes, but otherwise the peel itself tends to get overlooked, and it shouldn’t according to the New York Post.

The peel is packed with valuable nutrients such as vitamin A, B vitamins and loads more antioxidants. Oh and fibre. Which can boost feelings of fullness and lower cholesterol.

The green peels are best for cooking, as they also contain probiotics and resistant starch: the “calorie-free carb”. Also, bananas are known for containing potassium, which can boost the amount of calories you burn and most of that is found in the peel.

So, no more tossing our poor under appreciated peels aside then. But, how do you actually go about eating the peel?

The yellow peels you’re probably most familiar with can be used in smoothies because they tend to taste sweeter than their green counterparts.

Green peels, which boast more weight-loss benefits can be used as potato susbstitues. Unusual, we know. 

After a quick Google search we found people are using them for a mashed potato substitute. So if you want to go low-carb, we suggest you check it out.

One of the easiest ways to try and include this yellow gem in your diet is banana tea. A slightly different take on the normal cuppa we crave after a long day, but packed with all the good things we need.

It’s very simple: cut off the stem and black end of a banana, put it in a pot with enough water to cover it and boil for 10 minutes. Strain it and drink as it is or add some milk. 

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If you’ve been scoffing at the popularity of quinoa since its appearance as a superfood in recent years, you may be forced to eat your words…

A study by Harvard Public School of Health has found that just one bowl of the grain a day could decrease the risk of early death by 17%.

The author of the research, Dr Lu Qi praised whole grains such as quinoa for better health: “Our study indicates that intake of whole grains and cereal fibre may reduce the risk of all-cause mortality and death from chronic diseases such as cancer, heart disease, diabetes and respiratory disease.”

Oats were also found to be incredibly beneficial to health due to a fibre called beta-glucan which helps protect against heart disease as well as containing a compound that helps to prevent heart attacks by cutting down on the fat forming in arteries.

It looks like it’s time to stock up on these incredible grains! As if we needed another reason to eat porridge for breakfast.

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We’ve all heard of the word superfood – but rather than your carrot with a superman cape on, the term superfood simply means foods that are rich in nutrients and are particularly beneficial to our health and wellbeing.

Here are five superfoods you need in your life:

Eggs
Eggs are a great source of protein, iron, zinc, vitamins and amino acids and they aren’t particularly expensive to pick up.

Garlic
Not particularly good if you are planning on locking lips, garlic is jam-packed with bioactive compounds great for maintaining healthy levels of cholesterol.

Berries
Even if they weren’t a superfood we’d be munching on these anyway. They are full of dietary fibres, are low in sugar, and are full of anti-oxidants.

Dark chocolate
We couldn’t compile a list of good foods without mentioning chocolate. Now we’re not talking about the milk version, but dark chocolate that has at least 60% cocoa content is full of anti-oxidants and is lower in fat than the milk version.

Goji berries
Great for protecting the liver and improving eyesight, goji berries are anti-inflammatory and taste great in smoothies.

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It looks like quinoa’s time in the spotlight may be coming to an end as a new grain is hitting the headlines.

Teff, Eragrostis tef, is a species of lovegrass that is native to Ethiopia. Teff is a massive crop in Ethiopia, accounting for 20% of all land under cultivation.

It has all of the similar gluten-free and protein attributes that quinoa is famed for, and then some.

The grain is unusual in that it is a fantastic source of vitamin C.

Victoria Beckham and Gwyneth Paltrow are said to be fans of the grain, so no doubt it will be hitting the shelves soon with that endorsement!

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If you’re looking to improve your diet, you may benefit from swapping your heavily refined foods for something that is slightly better for you.

Nowadays, people are more conscious of their health and in sync with their bodies, so it’s not surprising that sales in unusually-named grains and foods have skyrocketed.

Peru’s gluten-free quinoa grain is fast becoming popular among consumers as it is packed with fibre, iron, magnesium and phosphorus. While the ‘superfood’ has been championed for its health benefits, it is not the only one around.

Cowpea can be just as beneficial to your body as the quinoa. Cowpeas, grown in Africa, are more commonly known as the black-eyed pea and are rich in nutrients and fibre.

The aptly named ‘bitter melon’ may well be the most bitter fruit in the world, but it is packed full of cancer-fighting properties.

Uruguay and Brazil’s native guava is both sweet and sour to taste, but has superior mineral and antioxidant content.

It may be a little difficult to source these foods, but with some research, you can give your health a much needed boost.

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