Every so often I find something so incredibly good tasting AND good for me that I want to shout it from the rooftops! Well here are three foods that fit that bill.
As most of you know, as part of a healthy disease-free lifestyle, I encourage eating mainly whole plant-based foods and limiting anything artificial, (color, flavor preservatives etc), limiting soy isolates, sugar, and corn, and I encourage getting enough natural dietary fiber for proper digestion and cancer prevention. And of course the food must taste good!
But I’m human. And that means I need to reward myself (and my tastebuds) with some goodies occasionally.
That brings me to the first item in my food love-triangle.
Coco Polo’s stevia sweetened, 70% cocoa with whole almonds chocolate. Rich, dark, creamy, heaven should really be its name. A friend of mine just introduced me to this, (thanks Mara) and I have mixed emotions about it. On the one hand, it’s the most decadent thing that I’ve ever tasted and don’t feel guilty about, and on the other hand, now that I’ve tasted it I don’t think I can live without it!
Ingredients are: Chocolate liquor, Almonds, non-GMO Erythritol, Inulin (from Chicory root) Cocoa butter, non-GMO Soy lecithin, Vanilla, Reb A (stevia)
- Chocolate liquor isn’t Kahlua (sorry) it’s the liquid form of pure chocolate
- almonds are one of my favorite nuts because they are high in calcium
- erythritol is a sugar alcohol (not the martini kind though) that has all the sweetness but none of the calories or blood sugar spikes. It basically tastes good, moves through your digestive tract pretty much unchanged and is excreted. Sweeet!
- Inulin…not inSulin (which is an enzyme that is produced in your pancreas for sugar digestion) is a starchy carb that acts like fiber in your body. It has a sweet taste, but travels to your large intestine (colon) undigested where it can have some good influence on your normal intestinal bacteria…the good bacteria that we need for digestion and immunity. Some of my favorite foods contain inulin like garlic, and onions. The inulin in this chocolate comes from chicory root. But like everything, ingesting a boatload of inulin can cause intestinal symptoms.
- Cocoa butter is that fat from the cocoa bean
- Soy lecithin is the oil by-product in soy that holds all the ingredients together. I love that they use non-GM soy! Those allergic to soy or those who are avoiding soy because of hormone properties need not fear! The hormone and allergic properties are contained in the protein of the soy not the oil.
- Vanilla is a flavoring from the vanilla bean
- Reb A is a stevia extract and the only form of stevia that has been tested and approved by the FDA.
I love so much about this treat! I love that it doesn’t affect my blood sugar. I love that the ingredients are non-GMO. I love that the 70% cocoa (the amount suggested to have maximum anti-oxdant health effects) used is sustainably sourced. And most of all I love the soft creamy taste! If you can find this brand of chocolate…go for it! If you can’t find it….keep looking!
Next up is the best friggin chip on the planet: Beanitos! The creation of two brothers, Doug and Dave Foreman, this chip has it all: fiber, no preservatives, corn-free, no MSG, gluten-free, and more! And the taste is almost TOO good. It hold up to my homemade guac and hummus and is strong and flavorful enough to just eat plain!
Ingredients: whole navy beans, whole grain rice, sunflower/safflower oil, guar bean gum, sea salt
- whole navy beans are packed with plant-based protein and fiber
- whole grain rice is rice the way it should be
- sunflower/safflower oil are oils from the plant. While I limit my fat intake, (especially Omega 6 fatty acids, the trade off is eating a corn-free chip with a conscience.)
- guar bean gum is made from the substance that lies just under the husk of the guar bean. It hold the chip together.
- Sea salt has lots of benefits over processed salt and is free of the preservatives and additives of table salt.
Beanitos makes several other varieties: black bean, pinto bean and cheese flavored. But the one and only brand for me is the “restaurant style”white bean. I mean what other snack chip can say they have calcium, iron, 6 grams of fiber/serving AND potassium?
Granted these are still not considered “whole” if you’re trying to maintain a whole food plant-based intake, but again, sometimes ya just gotta. And if you can do it and stay healthy…that’s awesome.
Now you can shoot me! As long as it’s with Vonnie’s Greens Pea Shoots!
Pea shoots are baby sweet pea plants that are busting with nutritional goodness and flavor. The sweetness of these little tenderlings makes me smile. I use these in my salads to sweeten them up. I also put them on top of my farinata’s and pizzas. But the best way I like eating them is by themselves as a snack (but there’s not enough in these packets to keep me snacking all day….Vonnie….are you listening?)
Ingredients: pea shoots & love
Most shoots and sprouts are high energy producing and are teaming with vitamins and minerals so you will get a big bang for your buck! But these pea shoots are sweeter than anything I’ve tried.
I really can only eat one or two servings of the chocolate or the chips…but I can eat these pea shoots all day long!
Let us in on some of your favorite healthy obsessions!!