I am slowly (very slowly) starting a career in freelance writing. So far it is very low pay but a lot of fun! Today I started a project writing about Shakes. It is really interesting to go to the source with research and find out the truth behind the hype. Today I discovered that quinoa, chia and flax seeds really are super foods with some amazing health qualities. Do they help us to lose weight? Well yes… And no.
Flax seed and Chia have got health benefits of their own which we will discuss in another blog. The great thing about them from a weight loss point of view, is that they are both mucilagenous. This means that they are gelatinous, they thicken the drink they are mixed with and they make us feel full. Of course if we add something unhealthy like ice cream or shop bought fruit juice we are upping the calories and lowering the GI (Glycemic Index). Quinoa adds protein for extra fullness and extra well being.
Juicing seems to be the best way to lose weight but I have concerns about the fiber being wasted (or in our case being fed to the chooks). I believe that we need some of that fibre ourselves. Smoothies can be very fattening with a low glycemic index unless we are really careful about the ingredients. Bananas, although quite healthy, have also got quite a low GI – about the same as biscuits. This can be remedied by adding a low GI ingredient such as oatmeal, LSA or even psyllium husks. mucilaginous.
Shakes seem to have qualities of both juicing and smoothies with added ingredients for health and fullness. The use of whey powder or it her protein powders typifies a “shake”. They also have a grain base – such as oatmeal, quinoa, chia (not actually a grain) and LSA.
If we want to lose weight we need to balance the ingredients in any of these so that we are getting a wide variety of vitamins, minerals and proteins. It needs to have an ingredient that will give a sense of fullness and it needs to be tasty!
To make a delicious healthy drink there are a variety of natural sweeteners that are low calorie and even low GI. Stevia is my favourite – I have two stevia plants growing and am cultivating more. Stevia can have a bitter after taste but I find it really blends well with the stronger tastes. Xylotil is another natural sweetener that can be used. I often like to use a little honey. Sometimes it is just good to add a small amount of sweet fruit.
There is so much more to learn and share – I look forward to bringing this knowledge to you!