25 Jan Ancient Foods with Modern Benefits
You might have heard buzz about “Primal” and “Paleo” diets in recent years. These nutritional approaches emphasize the concept that we, as the human species, gain the most benefit from a way of eating that resonates most strongly with how our more primitive ancestors (yes, sometimes referred to as “cavemen”) ate. Along with this train of thought is the “Whole 30” diet, again, reiterating the belief that our bodies receive the vitamins, nutrients and minerals most vital to optimal survival when we focus on eating (minimall processed) foods straight from the earth (ie. animal meats, vegetables, fruits, nuts and seeds). “ Loren Cordain, PhD, professor of health and exercise science at Colorado State University and author of The Paleo Diet claims: The diet lessens the body’s glycemic load, has a healthy ratio of saturated-to-unsaturated fatty acids, increases vitamin and nutrient consumption, and contains an optimal balance of protein, fat, and carbohydrates.”
It’s no coincidence these “ancient” ways of eating have a significant impact on our livelihoods and overall wellness. While our modern lives may require some adjusting to paleo/primal ways of eating (Afterall, the world has changed A LOT over the past few decades, even.), some ancient foods still do hold tremendous nutritional power and are what we would label as “modern superfoods”, even today.
We’ve compiled a list of just a few of these modern marvels. As you introduce them into your wellness routine we’re confident you’ll quickly start to reap the benefits.
Known as a natural form of preservation, fermented foods hold even more gut-healing power than our ancestors may have realized. During the fermentation process, natural bacteria feed on the sugar and starch in foods which not only creates lactic acid (preserving food), but it also creates a plethora of beneficial enzymes, b-vitamins, Omega-3 fatty acids, and probiotics. With benefits such as increased energy, improved immunity, and greater digestive health, why not add fermented foods to your feast? Not to mention, the “power of sour” kills the cravings for sweets. – WIN!
Examples include: Kimchi (See Recipe Here), Kombucha, Saurerkraut, and other fermented veggies and soy products.
Herbs and Spices
It’s been a long-standing belief (especially in Western Medicine) that herbs and spices have incredible healing power against illness and disease. Modern science has been studying and validating many of the ancient claims. Herbs and spices are not only superfoods when it comes to detoxing and ridding the body of harmful toxins, but they’re easily added to your daily eating menu and add flavor to many dishes. Here are examples of a few of our favorites and their benefits:
- Cayenne Pepper: Boosts metabolism, breaks up phlegm and mucus
- Ginger: Soothes an upset stomach, combats nausea, reduces inflammation
- Cinnamon: Stabilizes blood sugar levels, boosts metabolism, reduces sugar cravings
- Turmeric: Reduces inflammation, inhibit tumors growth
Bone Broth & Grass-Fed Beef
Loaded with antioxidants, essential vitamins and minerals, bone broth is incredibly nutritious.This superfood is even more beneficial for for people with food sensitivities (including autoimmune responses), IBS symptoms, weight loss resistance, bacterial overgrowth, even leaky-gut syndrom.
Even though it’s not as easily digested, beef on it’s own has tremendous health qualities, too. Quality (of the grass-fed variety) beef is an excellent source of heart- and brain-protecting omega-3’s EPA and DHA, as well as, increased levels of conjugated linoleic acid (CLA), especially when compared to its grain-fed counterpart. Why would I care about CLA, you might ask? Higher CLA levels have been linked to improving/accelerating weight loss efforts and a reduced risk of heart disease and cancer.
-Health & Wellness Coach