We hear so much about different superfoods, but if there is one food that truly falls into the superfood category, it is sprouts. They have the largest amount of nutrients of any food. Sprouting increases the vitamin content of seeds significantly.
WHAT ARE SPROUTS?
So what are sprouts exactly? They are edible seeds that have just germinated. All sprouts contain more vitamin C than oranges by weight. They are also a tremendous source of antioxidants, vitamins A, B vitamins, vitamin E, calcium, potassium, magnesium, iron, selenium, and zinc. The sprouted seeds of some legumes, like lentils, peanuts, and soybeans, contain complete protein, as do many seeds.
IMPLEMENTING SPROUTS INTO YOUR DAILY DIET
Eating sprouts is a good way to supplement your diet with food enzymes that are critical for literally every biochemical reaction that takes place in the body. Incorporating sprouts into your diet may significantly enhance your health, energy, and longevity. Sprouts are filling, are easy to implement in salads and sandwiches, or have as a snack. They can even be added to smoothies. A variety of sprouts may even be mixed together to make a complete salad. Some clients who suffer with reflux or other digestive issues when they consume animal proteins feel a significant relief when they add sprouts to their plate. This is because all these enzymes help to break down the protein. What a treat! They add taste at the same time as opposed to the capsulated enzymes that we often buy to take when eating cooked food.
GROW SPROUTS AT HOME!
It is very easy to grow your own sprouts and can be safer than buying them in the grocery stores. Vegetable sprouting kits can be purchased from most health food stores or from companies that specialize in seeds and sprouting equipment. A green thumb is not necessary!
Sprouting at home is also a great hobby to do with your kids. It is super easy and fun to watch how the seeds germinate and change every day. It gives them something to look forward to while developing healthy habits!
The essence of life is our breath. Breathing is more important than eating or sleeping. It is necessary to learn to regulate and control our breath to effectively heal the mind and body. Begin to recognize that breath is energy, which will allow us to control our focus and awareness throughout the day.
Breathwork is a practice that we should do every day. Why? By taking the time to pause to recognize and to appreciate the breath, we can learn to sleep better, improve the body’s immune response and reduce stress. In the practice of yoga, breath work is necessary to breathe with conscious awareness, creating connections with our mind and body in order to prevent injury.
I invite you to practice the following exercise called “Box Breathing.” Inhale on a count of 4–3-2-1. Hold the breath 4-3-2-1. Exhale the breath 4-3-2-1. Hold the breath 4-3-2-1. Repeat this 3 times, and then allow the breath to come and go by itself. There is medical and scientific evidence to support the fact that by changing how we breathe, we can change how we think, feel, behave, and perform. James Nestor writes in Breath, The New Science of a Lost Ark, “the key to optimum breathing, and all health, endurance, and longevity benefits that come with it, is to practice fewer inhales and exhales in a smaller volume. To breathe, but to breathe less.”
Take the time to notice how we breathe when we are peaceful and calm, rather than when we breathe a different breath when we are angry, upset, or most significantly when stressed! Try to take the time each day to pause, recognize and appreciate the simplicity of your breath. Learn to breathe with intent, slowly and deeply through the nose. Anders Olsson uses the technique of Breath hold Walking to increase carbon dioxide and, thus, increase circulation in the body. Find some space in a park that creates a calmer energy for you where the ground is soft. Exhale all your breath, then walk slowly around counting each step. Once you feel a sense of air hunger, stop counting. Inhale a deeper breath than you would usually take. Pause, exhale the breath on a count of 5. Breathe normally for about one minute and then repeat the exercise 3 times.
In the words of Thich Nhat Hanh, “Conscious breathing is the best way to stop and calm our anxiety, fear, and anger. You can always practice being fully aware of your breathing. This is essential to stop and come back to yourself.”