As you may know from my updates and last blog, (but, just in case not) I’ve recently found Ayurvedic medicine, Crystal Healing and Naturopathy, to which the latter – especially – was the first to really open my eyes.
Throughout the course lessons ‘Superfoods’ were part of one of the modules, in which several were featured with details of their beneficial properties – as well as any potential negatives too.
But, do you know what wasn’t included – you might have guessed…
The first up today…
The bane of my life…
You’d have no idea how much trouble this seemingly ‘everyday’ fruit (Seed!!! Veg!… or whatever you want to call it) has caused me over the years!
A little bit of a back story… that’s always fun!
When Mum used to prepare all our meals (which was about this time last year), we would sometimes have a Tuna and Avocado Wrap – simple, very healthy and incredibly delicious.
But no! It couldn’t be so cut and dry for me, of course!
YES, all of those things did apply, don’t get me wrong, but…
Avocado is one of my ‘trigger foods’ that I’ve always felt I need to ‘deserve’ to eat, which has always taken the form of exercise – or the feeling that I have physically done enough – such as walking for 6+ miles in less than 2 hours… or over 1200 sit-ups in just under and hour.
This way of thinking applied – and still does (although WITHOUT the over-excessive exercise I must add – to most meals to some extent or another, but mainly then to these Wraps, Pasta, Cheese, Dried Fruits, as well as an amazing meal of Cous Cous, Red Salmon and Basil Pesto!
I believe it is down to the fact that as I loved these foods/meals so so much, if I hadn’t ‘done enough’ that I felt I’d deserved to eat them, I shouldn’t be allowed to have and enjoy them.
This linked especially to high calorie meals, Foods incredibly high in fats, such as Avocado – even though they are healthy fats – or those foods that are deemed unhealthy by some – such as Pasta!
My OCD would also kick in, so if I did say, 1000 sit-ups before eating, I’d have to do at least that many (if not more – which is how it resulted in it becoming near on 2000 at times!) next time before having that meal…
(My word – what did… what has my life come to?!)
So, The Avocado!
As you may have rallied, this has always loomed large for me, but over the while I have tried to challenge it/myself, incorporating a portion within a meal on the odd occasion – with my last attempt only a few weeks ago on July 19th!
But, the upshot is… I still get incredibly anxious every time, in case I haven’t done enough/earned it – well, feel as though I haven’t – as well as a fear it would be too hard, too soft, too ripe, too green, too brown, too hot, too…
Yeah… you get the idea!!
With all these factors in mind, to me, it’s truly not worth it – but…
Seriously, you actually can’t look through Instagram without every other post – actually, most food posts – containing the flipping stuff.
The media – gosh, this is on my LIST of annoying things that get to me as well – I know it’s not a food but… well… my rules! hehe!
Where was I… okay – The media…
It portrays the Avocado as this amazing Fruit that does wonders for your health. Whilst this may be true to some extent, as in 100g they:
- Have…20 different vitamins and minerals.
- Are… a good source of B vitamins.
- Are… low in sugar.
(why is this a positive when natural fruit sugars are healthy?!)
- Can… lower cholesterol and triglyceride levels.
- MAY… (hmm) help prevent cancer.
- MAY… (May again!) help you lose weight.
- Are… high in monounsaturated fat.
Wait, bare with me – please hold these thoughts…
Another contestant in my ring today is…
The Açaí Berry!
Now, I’m pleased to say I’ve never actually had a run on with this Berry, but the first point that does really annoy me is the fact one can’t purchase Fresh (or dried I don’t believe) Açaí Berries, with it being commonly supplied in the UK as a powder.
Secondly, they just get to me in a similar way to the Avocado in terms of their over-use and over-estimated health boosting benefits. Many of these claims are also a May! as they have little or no supporting evidence.
These Purple little pests have:
- More antioxidants than other common berries.
- Especially…Anthocyanin, which may lower oxidative stress and inflammation, promoting brain health.
- Fibre… that helps to keep one feeling fuller for longer.
- Heart-healthy Fats… that reduce bad cholesterol helping heart-health
- 19 Amino Acids
- May… Help to prevent cancer
- High levels of Calcium… which help keep bones, heart, muscles, and nerves strong and healthy.
Again, whilst these facts may well be true, please hold these thoughts… and stay with me!
Last but not least…
Now, I have unfortunately had a bit of experience with this – on several occasions…
I purchased a packet – a big packet – and it sat in my fridge until, well… lets just say, it wasn’t nice!
I then tried again a few weeks later, with a smaller packet mind you, that ended up going to my parents fridge.
I then thought…ah… baby kale – nope… I was concerned as the packet didn’t state it would count as one of my 5-a-day! (Face-Palm!…I do so try!)
Okay, finial time – although I’m pretty sure there may have been another packet (or 2) in there that found their way to my Dad – I bought a bigger packet of proper Curley Kale (that stated 1 of your 5 a day!)
I steamed it as per instructions and had it as part of my dinner. I was actually quite proud of myself – it smelt nice and tasted… absolutely FOUL!
Not only is it in my bad books for weeks of Kale-Gate, but, this Dark, Leafy, Green goo (when cooked) is considered “one of the healthiest and nutritious plant foods in existence” (Gunnars, K. 2018)
WAIT… how so compared to the ‘perfect’ Avocado?
Well, Kale is:
- One of… the world’s best sources of vitamin C and vitamin K
- Nutrient-dense and…
- Low-calorie… making it excellent for including in a weight loss diet.
- A high source of… nutrients that Protect Eye-health. (lutein and zeaxanthin)
- A source of… bile acid sequestrants, which helps lower cholesterol
Whilst I could go on to many other foods, I had decided to only detail the three above.
…And the fact that if you’ve got this far, I’m sure your rather bored already.
So, with all these thoughts (hopefully) still in mind from my main 3, I truly do feel these foods group into another category – the one I like to call (ooh, I do love Miranda!) the ‘Shortcut Foods’.
These are foods people tend to believe that, as it’s healthy and THIS ‘good’ for ones body, they can consume as much as they want to.
That if they have half – or a whole!! – Avocado, or a side of Kale, they can still maintain their lifestyle of ready meals, low or no portions of fruit/veg, sweets, cakes and limited movement, for example!
Remember the Avocado? Well…
77% of the calories in it are from fat – making it one of the fattiest plant foods in existence – however, everywhere states:
‘It’s monounsaturated fat, which is a “good” fat that helps lower bad cholesterol.’
Oh Okay, that’s good…
But… whilst this may be true, people feel they can eat more and more of these ‘shortcut’ foods.
When actually, No – because they are high in fat, they are high in calories, which would have an affect on ones body weight.
Portion control is still very much advocated!
I just want to make clear that all 3 of these foods are perfectly healthy.
I am not promoting or suggesting avoidance of any in the slightest, just…
Don’t focus “on one or two of the latest food trends” (Hill. A. 2018)
As with everything, moderation is fundamental.
Well, on that note, that leads me on beautifully to my next blog…
But until then…
(Please note: My bullet lists are not extensive.
I have compiled the information from the sources listed below and from my own knowledge – from reading, experiencing and learning through my accredited courses.)
(Hill. A. 2018) https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/true-superfoods
(Gunnars, K. 2018) https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/10-proven-benefits-of-kale