Using our daily food as medicine to combat the symptoms of inflammation and accelerated aging in the body is one of the best and easiest places to start on the road to wellness. Our food choices play a vital role in how we feel and look. We often strive to look our best without realizing that how we look on the outside is greatly related to our health on the inside. So why not take some of the superfoods we know and love and enjoy them in a delicious winter recipe?!
One of my favourite beverages for the winter is a warm spiced golden cacao latte (recipe below) that includes a number of my favourite anti-inflammatory ingredients. You might notice that many of the superfood ingredients in this recipe can actually be found in some of Graydon's formulations. Putty, for example, is a great winter cream for dry, red and irritated skin that contains hemp, turmeric and Manuka honey. These ingredients benefit the body when both consumed and applied to the skin! Keep reading to learn more about five superfood ingredients and how you can incorporate them into a warm winter latte.
This spice has a long history of use in India and other countries. It is commonly known for its use as an ingredient in curry dishes, but there is so much more to this amazing spice! Turmeric can be used in the fresh root form, as a powder or taken as a supplement.
Curcumin is the active component of turmeric and is best known for its anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties. Some of its benefits include reducing joint pain, removing free radicals that cause cell damage and decreasing the enzyme that causes inflammation. We see similar results when we use this superfood on our skin.
Curcumin’s absorption becomes enhanced by 2000% when combined with black pepper. And since curcumin is fat-soluble, absorption also improves when consumed with a source of healthy fat.
Hemp seeds are an excellent source of plant-based protein, omega-3 fatty acids and zinc. Omega 3s have numerous health benefits and studies continually link it to lower levels of inflammation. Zinc is an incredible mineral that not only reduces inflammation, but is also a cofactor in collagen production, which is important for hair, skin, nails, and joints.
Cinnamon contains cinnamaldehyde and cinnamic acid both of which have antioxidant properties that help to inhibit cell damage caused by free radicals.
There is some evidence that manuka honey is beneficial to reduce inflammation in skin disorders because of its anti-inflammatory properties and antibacterial effects. Adding a small amount to this delicious beverage not only provides health benefits, but also makes this beverage a heavenly treat.
Cacao is high in anti-inflammatory flavonoids and magnesium, which is protective against oxidative stress for many parts of the body, including the immune and musculoskeletal system as well as the heart, brain and skin. Most chocolate that people choose to eat has too much sugar, which negates its benefits. Be sure to choose the darkest chocolate that you'll enjoy... at least 70%.
Spiced Golden Cacao Latte Recipe
Together the ingredients in this warming winter beverage nourish the body and soul. By choosing warm drinks and cooked food in the winter, you will be supporting your immune function and overall balance in your body.
- 1 cup hemp milk (or 2 tbsp hemp seeds blended with 1 cup of water in a high-powered blender for 1 minute)
- 2 tsp cacao powder
- 1 tsp ground turmeric
- ½ tsp ground cinnamon
- 1 pinch fine sea salt
- 1 pinch ground black pepper
- ½ tsp manuka honey (optional, for sweetness)
- Pour the milk into a small saucepan and warm it on low-medium heat.
- Whisk in the remaining ingredients until well blended.
- Pour your latte into your mug of choice and enjoy!
Written by Bonnie Flemington, a Certified Nutritional Practitioner. To learn more about Bonnie, please click here.
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Credit for main photo: Eugene