We are two individuals, sister-in-laws, and friends who are striving to thrive and be our personal best as well as making our surroundings a better place to live! Connected by faith, family, friendship, photos, and writing, we just want to share our journey with you!

Friday, April 16, 2010

These are a few of my favorite SUPPLEMENTS!

It's so important if you are a vegetarian to be mindful of what nutrients you are taking in and make sure that you are getting enough variety in your diet, so that your body gets great amounts of protein, iron, vitamins, minerals and essential amino acids.
I personally believe that it's better to eat food than to pop a multi-vitamin (solely relying on that), but I also believe that my body is at it's best when I supplement with some amazing products. Some people feel that supplements are over-priced and I agree that supplements can be pricey. But I also would rather pay a little more for a better quality product that is not synthetic or filled with preservatives. My health is something that I have control over. I choose what goes into my body and of course I enjoy my treats (hello, apple rhubarb crisp!), but I can eat treats once in awhile because those treats have better ingredients than your conventional treats would, and 90% of what I put into my body is real, whole, organic, good food.
I don't stress over what I'm eating. Stress is detrimental. I just am mindful. I like feeling my personal best, a journey I enjoy! I love learning new facts and meeting new people who are passionate about similar things (such as the environment, food, animals, traveling, fitness, health, family), like I am!
I wanted to share with you some of my current favorite products that make me feel my personal best!
Spirulina: Spirulina is a blue-green algae. Similarly to Chlorella, Spirulina is also a complete protein, meaning that they provide all eight essential amino acids in the proper ratios. Depending on growing conditions, spirulina is approximately 65-70 percent protein. The form in which Spirulina is made up of, makes digesting it five times easier than if you were trying to digest meat or soy products. Spirulina contains many essential minerals and trace elements, including potassium, calcium, iron and selenium. Spriulina is only 7 percent lipid and most of that is in the form of essential fatty acids.
I personally don't LOVE the taste of spirulina. I have tried to eat it just mixed with water but I choose to enjoy my life and when I try to ingest Spirulina that way, let's face it, I'm not enjoying anything! So I throw it into a smoothie and then my son Noah and I share it and we both get a lesson on sharing, take in a whole lot of nutrients and enjoy life too!

Chlorella: I have talked about my love for chlorella before so I am just going to give a quick shout-out! Chlorella is a single-celled freshwater green algae. Chlorella is a complete protein. It is 65% protein, and the most environmentally-efficient method of protein production. Chlorella contains vitamin B-12 which is difficult for vegetarians to find in forms other than tablets. I enjoy the flavor of chlorella much more than the flavor of spirulina but I try to incorporate both into my diet.

Chia Seeds: Brandan Brazier talks about the health benefits of white chia seeds in his book The Thrive Diet, but the type that I take (ChiaFactors by Natural Factors), contains both white and black chia seeds. Chia seeds have a poppyseed-resemblance. They are crunchy but don't have a strong flavor. They are often compared to flaxseeds but unlike flaxseeds which need to be ground in order to absorb its nutrition, chia seeds do not need to be ground. The recommended intake of chia seeds is 1 tbsp./day. Dan and I both consume chia seeds and find that one container lasts for quite awhile (about $16 for 360 grams). I add them to my smoothies, salads, stir-frys, baking...just about anything! Chia seeds are an excellent source of vegetarian protein. They also contain a high amount of dietary fibre and are non-GMO and gluten free. Chia seeds are cholesterol free and a source of omega-3 and omega-6. Brandan Brazier says that chia seeds (specifically white), helps speed recovery as it consists of about 20 percent high-quality protein and is packed full of antioxidants. Chia seeds are specifically high in magnesium, potassium, calcium and iron. This can effectively result in a replenishment of minerals used in muscle contractions and lost in sweat. I found this interesting when reading The Thrive Diet: "Chia can be used to replace up to one-fifth of regular flour in baking, to add nutrition and crunch, or substitute at a 1:1 ratio for ground flaxseed in recipes". So interesting! I love learning new ideas for substituting! One of my closest friends Amy and her daughter have to eat a gluten-free diet, so this is something that would be great for her daughter and her! I am going to try and incorporate more gluten-free recipes for those that are interested!

Brown Rice Protein Powder: I eat a lot of greens and different vegetables. I sprinkle hemp hearts and chia seeds on many of my dishes, but sometimes to ensure that I am getting enough protein for my activity level (I run about 50km/week as well as other activities), I add a scoop of brown rice protein powder to my smoothies. My husband can just mix up the brown rice protein powder with his juice, but I can't handle it! It's rather 'chalky' on it's own, but when I add it along with berries, a banana, cinnamon, chlorella, almond milk and a small amount of sweetener (such as a splash of brown rice syrup, agave, or maple syrup), I love it! The type of protein powder you get is important as many claim to be healthy and are actually genetically modified, not organic, or heavily processed. I like Heartland Gold's because it's hypo-allergenic (gluten, soy and lactose free), sprouted, non-GMO, organic and 80% protein!!! Totally worth every penny for the quality that you are getting! The ingredients are great: Organic compliant, sprouted, non-GMO, brown rice protein concentrate, stevia leaf and natural vanilla flavor! Not bad!

There are many more favorite foods and supplements that I could go into...and I will! All in good time! I just wanted to share a few with you today!

So enjoy your health and be happy! Remember, take what you like and leave what you don't!


  1. J: I was wondering, what are the foods you can get protein from w/o taking supplements? And do you know how much protein you need a day? Can you get enough in your day by eating the right foods if you don't have the supplements too? Thanks!

  2. I am out at Grandma's house right now but I will post a detailed answer tonight!

  3. I put up a new post, "P is for Protein" and I hope that this helps!!!