A chocolate orange with a twist: health benefits!
‘Tis the season for tangerines and copious amounts of chocolate (I’m talking about that tempting box of chocolates sitting in the lunchroom at the office that seems to keep reappearing just when you think the box is empty). My favorite way to get my chocolate fix is by adding unsweetened raw cocoa powder to smoothies and oatmeal. Cocoa is an amazing source of antioxidants, which fight cancer and heart disease, and also may act as an antidepressant by boosting serotonin. Try some cocoa in your next smoothie bowl and discover this sweet breakfast that could even pass for dessert.
- 1 cup raspberries, frozen
- splash of almond milk
- 2 tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder
- 1 tbsp peanut butter
- 2 tbsp flax seeds
- pinch of cinnamon
- 1 kiwi
- 1 small tangerine
- Blend the raspberries in a food processor (pour a splash of almond milk in to get it moving, and pause to scrape down the sides).
- Add cocoa, peanut butter, flax seeds & cinnamon and blend until you get a smooth consistency.
- Serve immediately and top with kiwi, tangerine and seeds.
- tangerines/oranges = high in vitamin C & fibre which reduce lipid profiles and fight free radicals, high in pectin which has been shown to lower LDL cholesterol, low glycemic load
- kiwifruits = high in vitamin C, fibre, and vitamin E which lower triglycerides, high in potassium which may prevent insulin resistance, low glycemic load
- flax seeds = contain lignans which may increase sex hormone-binding globulin and therefore lower blood testosterone levels, may reduce blood pressure
- raspberries = low glycemic load, high in anti-oxidants, may help lower inflammation and prevent cancer
- cocoa = antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, reduces blood pressure, can improve mood
- cinnamon = may help balance glucose levels, lower cholesterol, and decrease triglycerides in blood
The 3 primary ingredients are all nutritional powerhouses and PCOS-fighters.
Determining whether a meal is healthy can be complicated depending who you ask. In this case, however, there isn’t much to debate. The primary ingredients of this soup (cauliflower, kale and avocado) are all nutritional powerhouses and PCOS-fighters. By pureeing vegetables like cauliflower you can achieve a creamy soup without dairy or flour. In addition, unlike many soups this recipe is very low in sodium. Roasting the cauliflower, garlic and onion first helps achieve a richer flavor (and makes your home smell really good!). I would love to hear your thoughts in the comments below!
- 1 cauliflower head, broken into florets
- 1/2 medium onion, chopped into large chunks
- 4 whole garlic cloves
- 2 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil (& extra to drizzle as garnish)
- 1/4 tsp thyme
- 1/4 tsp cumin
- 4 cups water (approx.)
- A few handfuls of kale torn into chunks, organic if possible
- 1 avocado, chopped
- salt to taste (I didn’t add any)
- Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.
- In a small bowl mix the olive oil, thyme and cumin.
- In a large bowl drizzle the olive oil mixture over cauliflower, onion, and garlic, and then toss all together to coat vegetables.
- Transfer all to a baking sheet and cook in oven about 20 min or longer. The garlic may need to be taken out before the rest.
- Once cauliflower is golden, remove from oven and turn oven off.
- Blend cauliflower, onion and garlic in a blender or food processor adding water until smooth. Transfer to pot on stove on low heat and simmer.
- Blend avocado and kale with water until smooth.
- Add avo/kale mixture to the pot on the stove.
- Serve once you have reached your desired consistency (adding water to thin it).
- Optional: Throw seeds or nuts on it for extra protein.
- cauliflower = anti-inflammatory, low on the glycemic index, & contains sulforaphane which improves blood pressure, kidney function and may prevent cancer
- avocado = helps lower LDL “bad” cholesterol, low on the glycemic index, high in fiber, & high in B-complex vitamins which combat stress
- kale = anti-inflammatory, high in fiber, & high in calcium which is important for egg maturation and follicle development
- garlic = helps lower cholesterol, an antibiotic, & blood cleanser which relaxes blood vessels for easier blood flow
- onion = promotes liver detoxification, improves digestion & is high in chromium which helps maintain healthy blood glucose levels
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