BUILDING A HOLISTIC PANTRY
What’s in your pantry and cupboards determines the choices you make daily to support your health. Stocking your pantry and fridge with holistic ingredients means you're always prepared to create nutrient dense, balanced meals that will nurture and nourish your body and feed your radiance from the inside out.
Here are a few of my pantry staples to get you started!
Olives are one of the healthiest fruits around. Their high-antioxidant, antiviral, antibacterial, anti-inflammatory, and anti-fungal properties treat a large number of diseases and ailments, including heart disease, several cancers, candida, fungal infections, the flu virus, and yeast infections. Olive oil is also rich source of vitamins A and E, which both protect the skin from free-radical damage.
Coconut oil has immune-boosting properties and is antiviral, antimicrobial, and antifungal. Although it is a saturated fat, the medium chain fatty acids make it easily absorbable by the small intestine. This means it provides increased energy faster than any other fat.
Coconut aminos are a salty seasoning made from fermented coconut sap. Comparable to soy sauce, tamari, or nama shoyu, but far less sodium. It’s also both wheat and soy free, which makes it a wonderful option for those with food allergies. Coconut aminos are full of vitamins and minerals and perfect for stir-fries or over steamed greens.
Ghee is clarified butter that has been used since ancient times for deep healing & powerful fat nourishment. It's high in fat-soluble vitamins and it's a perfect alternative to those with dairy allergies as the process to create ghee out of butter leaves only trace amounts of casein and lactose. It's known for enhancing digestion & reducing inflammation. Ghee also has a high smoke point, so it's great for curries & stir fry. I like to use mine for kitchari, buttery matchas & as a treat with dates & nut butter.
One of my favorite additions to making salad dressings, it is also just good on its own with some warm water first thing in the morning to help create an alkaline environment in the body. It is also known to support digestion.
This pink salt contains 84 trace minerals and other important bio compounds that your body needs to promote a healthy ph. It can also help balance blood sugar and improve your sleeping patterns. This salt isn’t as salty as ocean mineral salt and hasn’t been stripped of its nutrients, making it the perfect addition to a balanced meal.
A natural sugar derived directly from the sap of the coconut tree’s flower blossoms. It’s low on the glycemic index and puts less stress on the liver than agave nectar. Coconut Nectar is rich in minerals magnesium, potassium, and zinc, and vitamins B & C. And it tastes delicious, kind of like caramel!
Dates are a quick source of energy & the medjool varietal has a sweet, rich & creamy taste. They are the perfect way to sweeten up a smoothie, raw dessert or savory sauce. Dates are high in soluble fiber, they're loaded with iron & they contain several beneficial vitamins and minerals which support heart health, lower blood pressure and help to cure anemia.
Although honey is higher on the glycemic index, raw honey (not to be confused with the processed honey) is loaded with nutrients. Raw honey is rich in antioxidants, phytonutrients, and enzymes. It also has antiseptic, antibiotic, and antimicrobial properties. These properties reduce inflammation while promoting the body’s natural healing processes. Raw, Local honey also contains pollens which act as an antidote for seasonal allergies.
Veggies that are grown in the sea! Varieties include arame, nori, kelp, wakame, and dulse. Just like land-grown veggies, sea veggies are very high in vitamins, minerals and phytonutrients. However, they are also filled with beneficial trace minerals that are difficult to get from any other food source. They are also some of the highest plant-based sources of iron, and have exceptionally high iodine content. Iodine is essential for thyroid function. Your thyroid must absorb sufficient amounts of iodine from your blood in order to manufacture and distribute hormones throughout your body.
Almonds are a great source of vitamin E and of many B-vitamins. Especially vitamin B2, which helps produce anti-stress hormones, including serotonin. Almonds also contain magnesium, which helps to activate enzymes required for energy production in the body.
Pumpkin seeds are rich in B-vitamins, vitamin E, zinc, and essential fatty acids. For men, these seeds help to support prostate health due to their high levels of zinc. In women, these nutrient-rich seeds help build sex hormones and increase sexual fluid secretions. They also help to rid the body of parasites.
Ginger helps relieve indigestion, gas pains, and stomach cramping by increasing the production of digestive fluids and saliva. Ginger also protects against cold symptoms, making it a fantastic immune boosting remedy.
Turmeric is a powerful anti-inflammatory. It is known for reducing inflammation and easing symptoms of osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis. Turmeric also improves the skin’s complexion, bringing circulation and nutrients to the skin.
This naturally sweet spice is found in the inner bark of the cinnamon tree. It has antimicrobial and antibacterial properties and is also a great source of calcium, fiber, magnesium, iron, and antioxidants. Cinnamon can also effectively lower blood glucose levels; add a little to your morning drink to keep your blood sugars stable.
High in b vitamins, fiber & protein this rice is a much better option than nutrient void white rice. Brown rice is also a great source of magnesium and selenium both which support colon health and dna repair, while the high levels of manganese offer antioxidant protection and energy production. Sprouting your rice also increases the gaba content which is known to relax the nervous system, soothe anxiety & enhance sleep. I love creating macro bowls over a bed of brown rice.
A nutritional powerhouse, quinoa is high in protein and contains all nine essential amino acids, making it a complete protein. Quinoa is also gluten-free, full of fiber and contains numerous amounts of nutrients including B-vitamins. You can toss it in a salad for an extra protein punch that’s easy to digest.
Oats are rich in protein, in particular, tryptophan. Tryptophan is an essential amino acid that in the presence of vitamin B6 and magnesium, is responsible for the production of our feel-good transmitter serotonin. Oats are also high in B6, which is essential for the conversion of tryptophan into serotonin. Oats are rich in fiber, giving a feeling of fullness without all the extra calories. They also help to lower cholesterol levels and are great for digestive health by keeping you regular.
Legumes are great items to stock as they are high in protein and fiber, which, when combined with grains, makes a complete protein. Soaking the legumes over night helps make them easier to digest. When cooking, you can also add a piece of kombu to the water to help increase increase digestibility.
Ditch the regular peanut butter and opt for a healthier option like almond butter. Most peanuts contain mold, which increases food allergies and yeast overgrowth. Nut butters like almond or cashew are the perfect addition to a smoothie or snack.
These two flours are the most versatile gluten free flours available and are both grain free!
::: TEAS :::
Holy basil is a herbal plant often used as a tea. It is an adaptogen, meaning it doesn’t directly affect your mood, but it helps your body respond to stress, anxiety, trauma, and depression by normalizing neurotransmitter levels in the brain. Holy basil also contains other therapeutic compounds, such as rosmarinic acid, which has anti-inflammatory properties and can help reduce inflammation of the adrenal glands. Holy basil also has strong antioxidant properties, which helps protect your body from the free-radical damage associated with stress.
Chamomile’s calming effects not only help combat insomnia, but in even small doses it can help alleviate anxiety. Chamomile also contains antioxidants, anti-inflammatory and antiseptic properties that reduce puffiness, skin inflammations, and irritants such as acne, rashes, psoriasis and eczema.
Peppermint has anti-spasmodic and antiseptic properties and acts as a nervine tonic to relax the central nervous system. Peppermint is also an effective carminative, which lowers inflammation, enhances digestion & reduces bloating.
Green tea has high concentrations of epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG), which comes from a class of phytochemicals. These polyphenols are called catechins, and they give green tree its slightly bitter taste. In fact, EGCG appears to be the most powerful of all catechins, with an antioxidant strength estimated to be from 25 to 100 times more potent than both vitamins C and E, which also contributes to its powerful anti-aging and skin-glowing benefits.
Picked from the freshest young leaves of the Green Tea plant, high potency Matcha is full of antioxidants to help protect your cells. It’s stimulating without causing adrenal exhaustion like many other caffeinated drinks out there. It helps to detoxify the body, increase energy, keep you feeling calm and boost immunity.
The Spring Dragon, which contains Gynostemma tea leaves from a very clean source in China, is a classic in my kitchen. This leaf contains some of the highest amounts of antioxidants in any tea. It works as a great base for tonics.
::: SUPERFOODS :::
Chlorella is a fresh water, single-celled algae. It is considered to be one of the most nutritious and potent foods on the planet. It also helps bind to heavy metals & detox them from the body.
This adaptogenic Peruvian superfood is naturally energizing, assists the body in coping with stress, balances hormones, and increases fertility. Maca also provides an abundance of vitamins and minerals. Add a tsp. to smoothies as an energy boost.
Loaded with Vitamin C, Beta Carotene, and iron. They are also high in antioxidants, trace minerals and amino acids. Add to trail mix, chia pudding, or steep a few and drink as a vitamin rich tea.
Chia seeds are one of the world’s highest plant-based sources of fiber, making them an amazing blood sugar stabilizer. Chia seeds are also a source of omega 3 fatty acids, antioxidants, and other nutrients such as calcium and iron. Having chia seeds in your pantry ensures that you always have an egg substitute for baking. To make a chia egg; add 1 tbsp. of chia to 3 tbsp. water and let sit for 5 minutes before adding it to your baking.
Hemp seeds are considered to be the perfect balance of essential fatty acids, which are crucial for proper brain function, heart health and digestive function. They are a rich source of insoluble fiber, helping to cleanse and lubricate the digestive tract. Hemp Seeds are rich in plant-based protein, including all nine essential amino acids and are one of the highest sources of gamma-linolenic acid (GLA), an essential fatty-acid which plays a key role in reducing disease-causing inflammation.
Cacao & Cacao nibs
High in magnesium and iron and full of antioxidants. Add to desserts, smoothies, or enjoy a superfood hot cocoa.
A complete protein, full of b vitamins, helps boost the immune system, and helps reduce seasonal allergy symptoms.
Acts as an Adaptogen, meaning it helps your body adapt to different situations (like stress) and supports your body in coming back into balance. Soothes the adrenals, regulates blood sugar and boosts immunity.
A concentrated source of vitamins E & D. Boosts immunity reduces inflammation, & supports skin health. Add to smoothies for a creamy, nutty flavor.
Is high in protein that is easily assimilated by the body and supports stomach healing. Boosts metabolism, supports joint health, and connective tissues.
A natural, low-calorie sweetener that actually helps to balance blood-sugar. It’s made primarily of fructooligosaccharide (FOS) which acts as a prebiotic that stimulates colon health, helps increase the absorption of vitamins and improves healthy intestinal flora. Yacon syrup is rich in potassium and antioxidant vitamins A, C and E. It can be used as a sugar or molasses substitute in recipes however you want to use less than half the amount, as it has as stronger taste. A sweet and delicious syrup from a root that is so good for desserts. Low on the glycemic index, and adds a nice earthy tone to your food.