We’re both big believers in getting as much as we can from real food and so we focus on unprocessed, organic, and local food when possible. Fortunately because we both love food so much, we also love preparing good quality ingredients. This hasn’t necessarily always been the case for either of us. Though my mum definitely encouraged healthy eating I was certainly not an intuitive cook when I first moved out of home. Over the years, due to my own state of health, I’ve also learned to continually improve, modify and adjust my diet so that it includes foods that really make me flourish. I have learned to appreciate quality ingredients over the years and grown to really enjoy constructing delicious snacks and meals – something that becomes easier and ever more enjoyable with time and experiencing eating and working with a wider variety of ingredients.
In the lead up to the Spartan race however, we’ve both decided to incorporate a few supplements and super foods into our daily regime. This selection has been based on our knowledge of nutritional biochemistry, vital health and energy systems, exercise nutrition, and our own personal experience of what we find works well for us – after all we’re all unique Beings!
I’m very fussy when it comes to supplement brands, and even within brands I may choose to only use / recommend particular products. That’s because there is a great range of difference in quality and bioavailability of nutrients between different brands and products.
Supplements we’re using:
|Thorne Research Neurochondria||3 capsules twice daily||Nutrients for mitochondrial energy production and neuromuscular communication.Available Here|
|Biotivia BioQuench||2 capsules daily||High potency antioxidants to help quench excess free radical production as a result of increased training schedule. Free radicals cause microtrauma to DNA and to mitochondria, affecting both energy production and tissue repair.Available Here.|
|Metabolic Maintenance Zinc Picolinate||2 capsules before bed||Easily absorbed form of zinc. Supports tissue repair, immune function, metabolic rate, nerve communication, insulin sensitivity, protein synthesis. Higher loss of zinc occurs through profuse sweating / athletic training.|
|MediHerb Mega Mag||1 teaspoon daily||High dose magnesium powder. Relaxes nerves and muscles, improve neuromuscular communication, treats and prevents muscle weakness, fatigue, cramps, tremors and spasms, builds and strengthens bones, assists in healthy circulation. Helps to regulate blood sugar levels, promotes restful sleep. Magnesium loss is increased by stress, lack of sleep, sugar and coffee.|
|NuZest Good Green Stuff||2 teaspoons twice daily.||Great detoxing formula made from real food ingredients. As mentioned in my previous post, a clean, detoxed, well functioning liver is important for production and maintenance of healthy connective tissue. Like us, all our cells eat and poop, and the more fuel we burn (i.e. increased exercise) the more waste is produced in our cells, the more they need to be cleaned out. Clean cells transport nutrients and messenger molecules with more ease, meaning better energy production. So, we’re using this to keep clean, to help out our liver, to build healthy connective tissue, and to boost our energy levels.|
We have both really noticed an increase amount of baseline energy with implementation of the above protocol. We both also regularly use the following superfoods, with or without a race coming up. There’s added incentive now that we do have the race ahead though.
Superfoods we include
|Chia seeds||1 dessertspoon daily||The “running Food”. Excellent source of omega 3 essential fatty acids – mostly alpha-linolenic acid (ALA). 20% protein. 25% dietary fibre (2 tablespoon / 25g provides 7 grams of fibre). Good source of antioxidants (chlorogenic acid, caffeic acid, myricetin, quercetin, kaempferol flavonols). Source of calcium, zinc, manganese, magnesium, calcium and niacin (B3). Tissue and muscle builder. Being a hydrophilic colloidal food (attracts water) can hold more than 12 x it’s weight in water, which is why it is beneficial for regulating fluid and electrolyte balance in the body, assists in digestion. Excellent protein assimilation muscle regeneration for athletes.|
|Bee Pollen||1-2 teaspoons daily||To date there are 185 known nutritional components of pollen. High source of protein including all 8 essential amino acids. Useful for muscle building. 27 minerals and all known vitamins. 7x more iron than beef (per calorie). 2x more calcium than milk. Highest natural level of folate (B9) – supports nervous system function and cell regeneration. Increases blood haemoglobin, increasing the oxygen carrying capabilities of red blood cells. Increases stamina and vitality and athletic performance.|
|Maca Powder||2 teaspoons daily||Maca is great for those who are fatigued, not sleeping well, during periods of stress and for women to regulate menstrual cycles.|
|Cinnamon||1 heaped tspn daily||High antioxidant and anti-inflammatory (to assist with tissue repair). Improves glucose metabolism.|
|Turmeric||½-1 tspn daily||Very potent anti-inflammatory, antioxidant and liver supportive food.|
|Blueberries||As many as possible!||Powerful antioxidant (to help prevent DOMS) fruit with good levels of vitamin K and manganese and vitamin C (important for connective tissue repair)|
|MSM Powder||1 teaspoon daily||An ordourless, water soluble natural form of sulfur essential for all living beings. It is essential for collagen synthesis and connective tissue. Sulfur is also an essential mineral in detoxification pathways. Softens scar tissue. Enhances the body’s ability to produce insulin and improves the metabolism of carbohydrates. Relieves arthritis and other joint pains and inflammations. Can reduce muscle cramping and improves muscle recovery after training.|
|Goji Berries||Small handful daily|
|Chlorella Powder||1-2 teaspoons daily||A pure green microalgae, chlorella is the ultimate detoxifier, purifier, cleanser and deoderiser. The richest food source of nucleic acids (required for building DNA/RNA) essential for life. The body’s ability to create nucleic acids diminishes with age, so getting them in through diet is the best way to ensure healthy cell reproduction and that you feel and look younger for longer. Chlorella Growth Factor (CGF) also enhances cell renewal. Excellent for more energy to train and lead an active lifestyle. CGF aids in cell growth for stronger healthier muscles, as such excellent for athletes (and children, adolescents and pregnant and breastfeeding women). Often leads to more youthful, fresher looking skin tone. Excellent support for stiff joints and chronic muscle, tendon and ligament problems.|
|Raw cacao powder / nibs||1 teaspoon daily. (not advised for those who are adrenally fatigued).||Highest scoring ORAC food ever (highest dose of antioxidants in just a teaspoon of powder 25,200 ORAC units).7x more antioxidants in raw cacao than heated cocoa powderPrevents oxidative tissue damage to cellsHigh in minerals: particularly magnesium, required for nerve and muscle function, blood sugar control and increases energy production.Excellent source of serotonin, dopamine, anandamide and Phenylethylamine (PEA) – the happy neurotransmitters.|
Pretty much all of the superfoods find their way into my breakfast (mixed in with something like Wrights Sprouts Raw Energy Muesli or Pure Wellbeings’s Buckola and coconut milk).
The chlorella and raw cacao I mix into my Good Green Stuff to make it even gooder and greener 😉 Otherwise it’s easy to make yummy desserts out of lots of the superfoods, such as my berry chia pudding.