What's in my pantry?

One thing I get asked a lot is what is in my pantry/fridge. Here are a few of my favorite things I keep around that I add to everything whether it's for me or for my kids. I love incorporating plant based proteins to my salads, oatmeals, roasted veggies, avocado toasts, etc. Also, my recent purchases have all been made at Costco but can also be found at most grocery stores.

Sliced Almonds - You can add these to salad, oatmeal, roasted green beans (one of my favorite ways to eat it!) Almonds have healthy fats & proteins that help keep you full and satiated longer.

Hemp Hearts -Seeds contain so many nutrients to help the plant grow, so they are powerhouses in providing healthy nutrition. Hemp hearts have a nutty taste making food taste a little more savory. 3 tablespoons has 10 grams of protein. (Hemp seeds do not have any THC or CBD but if you do get tested for Marijuana for your job, be sure to check  with your organization if eating hemp hearts are ok.)

Flaxseed - Growing up, I have always had eczema. However, I have mostly figured out how to prevent it for myself and my kids. Much of it has to do with eliminating all "fragrances" in our products but a large part is also what you eat. The omega 3 fatty acids found in flaxseed have been shown to have anti-inflammatory properties that help skin flareups and a diet with these types of lipids helps the skin protect itself from outside irritants. Flaxseed is also a great source of fiber that you can bake into breads, add to cereals, shakes and salads. 

Chia Seeds - Not only can you make chia pets out of chia seeds (anyone remember those?!) but chia seeds are another powerhouse seed providing protein, fiber, omega fatty acids, and tons of micronutrients. Chia is the mayan word for "strength" and you can see why these seeds have been named after them. Just like the other items on this list, you can add them to salads, shakes, granola, cereals or, my favorite, chia seed pudding (recipe coming soon!)

Pumpkin Seeds - Are you seeing a pattern here? I love incorporating seeds into my meals since they have so many health benefits. Sometimes, I just eat a handful of pumpkin seeds when I feel like I need a snack. These are one of my favorite salad toppers and I add them to my protein balls I often make. Pumpkin seeds contain a high level of antioxidants that have been show to stop the growth of breast and prostate cancer cells. Also, if you are taking Collagen peptides, collagen is missing one essential amino acid, L-tryptophan, preserving it from being a complete protein. Pumpkin seeds are a natural source of L-tryptophan, so when eaten around the same time as collagen can help your body use the completed protein to help repair & grow muscles. 

How to use these ingredients. Oats are sometime consumed in my house on a daily basis so we have a large container that has a combination of oats, flaxseed meal & chia seeds that have premixed to make morning a little easier for us and the kids. All of these can be made into an easy and delicious granola (recipe coming soon also!). Plus, add any combination (or just one) to your next salad. I love add chia seeds to may shakes, just be sure to have a toothpick for afterwards to get any leftover chia seeds in your moth.

If it is your first time trying any of these, as always, consult your doctor first. And go slowly. Many of these contain a lot of fiber so if your body isn't used to eating that much fiber, you might feel bloated. Be sure to drink plenty of water in addition. 

Enjoy and be sure to let me know if you tried any of these! 

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