Superfoods Blog

The Superfoods Blog lists our recent page updates, recipes and DIY's.

What are Adzuki Beans?

Nutrition and Unusual Ways to Eat

Adzuki bean is a small glossy red bean from the species Vigna angularis, an annual vine native to East Asia. Pronounced 'a-zoo-kee', its name comes from the Japanese language. They are the main bean variety used to make the infamous "red bean paste", popular for use as a condiment or filling in sweet or savory foods. Although adzuki beans have been utilized alongside soybeans for centuries in East Asian cuisine, they are now becoming a more popular bean option in kitchens around the world.

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Monk Fruit Sweetener Review

Different Types Plus Benefits

Monk fruit is an alternative sweetener made from the super sweet luo han guo species (Siraitia grosvenorii), native to parts of Southern China. According to Chinese legends, Buddhist monks in the remote mountainous regions near the city of Guilin were the first to discover and use it in the 13th Century. The name "luohan" comes from the term arhat, which means "a monk that becomes enlightened". The round vine-growing fruits are from the Gourd family with the word "guo" describing their fruit-like quality.

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Top 10 List of Common Fruits

and Their Nutritional Benefits

Probably one of the world's most popular fruit varieties, raw apples are sources of key nutrients. First, they are top on the list of common fruits that are high in PECTIN. One of the main reasons for the phrase "An apple a day keeps the doctor away"? Pectin is a type of polysaccharide and soluble fiber that normalizes bowel regularity and acts as a prebiotic, providing food for beneficial bacteria in the gut microbiome.

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Dietary Plant-Based Lectins Explained

Are They Bad?

What are lectins? Lectins are types of proteins that bind to carbohydrates. The word LECTIN is derived from the Latin term 'LEGERE' which means "to select" as they are sticky and glue-like. There are literally hundreds of different lectins found in the botanical world. Their biological function in plants is to repel pests. In the human diet, lectins are most prevalent in plant-based foods. While "gluten" is one of the most well-known lectins, turns out there may be others we need to be wary of.

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Reishi Mushroom Benefits

Our #1 Top Favorite

This dietary supplement is one that we here at Superfood Evolution both take regularly for its profound health-promoting influences. Not because of its long list of significant nutraceutical uses, but for other underlying benefits that it can offer to everyday life. What is this mysterious woody fungus? Displayed proudly on our header, it is one of our most beloved top superfoods in the world as well as on our website and YouTube channel. It is the reishi mushroom, also known as lingzhi or Ganoderma lucidum.

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Pros and Cons of Oat Milk

Commercial Vs Homemade

Manufactured oat milk is a plant-based drink known to have Swedish origins although health enthusiasts have been making it at home for many decades. The commercial variety is considered the innovation of food scientist Rickard Öste who in part produced one of the first oat milk brands in Sweden in the early 1990s. In the U.S., oat milk became the go-to dairy-free milk alternative between 2017-2019 and since then has only grown in popularity. Step aside soy milk and almond milk, oat milk is predicted to be top on the list of vegan plant milk options in 2024.

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Ways to Remove Microplastics from the Body

Top 4 Supplements

Even though it is virtually impossible to escape all the microplastics currently present in our food, water and atmosphere, it is possible to do what we can to protect ourselves by facilitating the body's own detoxification processes. When it comes to ways to remove microplastics from the body, taking a multi-faceted approach is ever so important. So, in addition to maintaining a health-promoting diet and lifestyle choices, periodic use of certain super supplements can help to achieve this goal. Here are our top favorites to consider for assisting in their removal.

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Top Green Tea Benefits

Researched EGCG Compound

Green tea comes from a very remarkable yet humble-looking shrub, the Camellia, often used as a flowering ornamental landscape variety because it's easy to grow and maintain. This is the same thick hardy-leafed plant utilized to make black tea. Black tea, however, goes through an oxidation or "fermentation" process that green tea does not. Green tea leaves are immediately heated to stop oxidation which retains the dried leaf's green chlorophyll pigment as well as many health-enhancing nutrients that this type of tea is known for.

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Benefits of Walnuts Vs Pecans

Differences and Similarities

People often get walnuts and pecans confused because they look and taste somewhat similar. While they are in the same family Juglandaceae, they come from different genus and nut tree species. The common English walnut is known as Juglans regia and the popular pecan species is Carya illinoinens, a type of hickory. Both have thick outer husks surrounding the shell and nut. Walnuts have a golden light brown color and more ridges than pecans. Pecans, pronounced either 'PEE-Can' or 'PEE-Con', are smoother and flatter with vertical grooves and more of a red-brown color.

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What is Polenta?

11 Commonly Asked Questions

Generally speaking, polenta can be considered a type of cornmeal which technically means milled corn or maize. The common cornmeal that most people are familiar with is steel-milled which removes most of the husk and germ of the corn. Stone-ground cornmeal is like polenta as it retains more of the whole kernel. Cornmeal types tend to have a uniform texture and are better than polenta when used as a flour for baked goods like cornbread. Polenta meal is most always a medium coarse uneven texture, but cornmeal that's labeled "coarse ground" is often used interchangeably.

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Bone Broth Benefits

Top Reasons to Drink It

Bone broth is a traditional food that dates back to prehistoric hunter-gatherers, hence why it’s often on a paleo diet protocol. Today, preparing it is still an age-old custom in many parts of the world. The current bone broth craze in the U.S. largely began many years ago in New York City by chef Marco Canora who ladled out this hearty brew from a takeout window. Now, people all over the planet have embraced it by the cupful for its many revitalizing health benefits, making it homemade or adding dehydrated bone broth protein powders to their morning rituals.

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Benefits of Stinging Nettle

The 8 Virtues

One of the great virtues of stinging nettle revered throughout the ages is its high concentration of nutrients. When nettle leaves are infused in hot water, they provide easily assimilated liquid nutrition. Dark olive-green nettle tea has a strong vegetal flavor because it's full of vitamins and minerals, especially iron, calcium, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium, vitamin C, vitamin K and some B vitamins. Tea infusions, using either fresh or dried leaves, are therefore potent vitamineral broths and great to have on hand for adding to soups or blended smoothies for extra sustenance.

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What is Sumac Spice?

Unique Properties and Culinary Uses

What is Sumac Spice? Sumac spice comes from the little reddish berries of the sumac bush that grow in dense clusters at the branch tips called bobs. The red berry fruit is fuzzy and sticky when ripe with a thin flesh surrounding one seed. After the whole berries are dried, they often turn a duller burgundy purple color and are ground to make the powdered spice called sumac. Sumac is known for its unusual tangy citrus-like flavor which comes primarily from its MALIC ACID content.

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Trendy Cauliflower Recipes

Unusual Ways to Use Cauliflower

With plant-powered foods on the rise in the last decade, cauliflower's taste and texture have been used to transform some classic dishes into low-carb alternatives that are just as tasty. Today, many cauliflower recipes focus on this vegetable as the star of the show. That's because the cluster of florets that make up a cauliflower head are quite versatile lending themselves well to many appetizers or even as the main course. As a replacement for high-carb foods cauliflower hits the mark because of its milder taste and ability to take on flavor via any sauces and seasonings you put on it. Here are the top unusual yet creative ways to use this common cruciferous variety.

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Cod Liver Oil Benefits

Cod Liver Oil Vs Fish Oil

Cod liver oil is made, as the name implies, by extracting the oil from the liver of the North Atlantic cod fish (Gadus morhua) where nutrients are most concentrated. Used as a common household nutritive supplement, consuming cod liver oil has been a Nordic tradition for centuries, helping one to endure these colder Arctic climate zones. Here are the top cod liver oil benefits, some considerations about dosage, plus the major differences between cod liver oil vs fish oil as there are some advantages and disadvantages to both.

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Benefits of Drinking Hibiscus Tea

What Daily Use Can Do

The benefits of drinking hibiscus tea, which we will shortly discuss, come from the main Hibiscus sabdariffa or "roselle" species most commonly utilized for hot water or sun tea infusions. The classic tropical-looking white, pink or red hibiscus flower has 5 broad ornate petals with an extended center pistil and many stigmas. The tea itself, however, is NOT made from these dried flowers as one might assume, but from what is called a flower calyx. Hibiscus tea can be a delicious tangy hot beverage or a thirst-quenching cold drink, but this infused liquid also offers many benefits to the body when incorporated into one's daily herbal tea regime.

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Bladder Infection Home Remedies

12 Superfoods for UTI's

A bladder infection, also called cystitis, is a type of urinary tract infection that affects the lower urinary system where the bladder is located. While antibiotics are typically prescribed to get rid of a lower urinary tract infection, if taken repeatedly over a 6-month period immune response can weaken and the bacteria involved (commonly E. coli) can increase resistance, leaving one vulnerable to future episodes. That's where some bladder infection home remedies might also come in handy to have in your arsenal of choices. Here is our list of superfoods in the form of foods, drinks, herbs and vitamins that you may wish to supplement with as a preventative as well as during the healing process.

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The Power of Neem Leaves

Ayurvedic Herb for Healthy Blood, Skin & More

It doesn't take much reading of ancient or modern Ayurvedic texts to discover that neem has been and continues to this day to be a very powerful species. According to Hindi mythology, the neem tree Azadirachta indica is of "divine origin", born as drops of amrita nectar (the elixir of immortality) directly to earth from the Devas. Also called "margosa" or "nimba", a term derived from Sanskrit to mean "to bestow health". There are some overlapping compounds in the leaf and oil, but neem leaves are far more suitable for internal use. They are full of active phytochemicals that make them one of the most potent leafy herbs on the planet with very strong therapeutic potentials for humans.

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Ways to Use Chickpeas

And Chickpea Flour

The nutritional benefits of chickpeas (aka garbanzo beans), like other beans, come from fiber but mainly their high PROTEIN content. Offering versatility across a wide spectrum of international cuisines, they are often a well-loved protein option for plant-based vegan and vegetarian diets. The use of chickpea flour is also on the rise, although it’s been a long-time staple on the Indian subcontinent. We'll share how to cook garbanzo beans as well as give you a couple of secrets to preparing them for maximum digestibility and nutritional value, two elements that we feel go side by side. Here are our personal top favorite ways to use chickpeas that can also simultaneously boost nutrient uptake.

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Top 9 Health Benefits of Ashwagandha

What the Research Says

Ashwagandha is a long slender root from the Withania somnifera species utilized as one of the top herbs in Ayurveda for well over 3,000 years. The root has a whitish center and is traditionally dried and used as a bulk powder or taken as capsules or tablets. Whole roots or pieces can also be ground or used in teas and other herbal preparations. It is likewise common these days to find it as a concentrated liquid or encapsulated supplement extract. Here are the intertwining benefits of ashwagandha and reasons you may wish to consider adding this top ayurvedic herb to your arsenal of plant-based allies.

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Tart Cherry Juice, Sweet Vs Sour

Top 3 Benefits

What are the nutritional benefits of cherries and the difference between tart vs sweet? Each type has its own list of healthful properties. Sweet dark red cherries are usually the ones most people are familiar with as a raw fresh fruit, but sour tart cherries are also a long-time cooking favorite in some cultures. In recent times, however, cultivars from this tart species Prunus cerasus or "sour cherry" have made their way onto the worldwide health scene.

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Top 4 Nutritional Benefits of Macadamia Nuts

And 7 Fun Facts

Out of other nuts and seeds, macadamias are one of the highest in fat content, even next to other tree nuts like pine nuts and walnuts. This aspect gives them their savory buttery-rich texture that can be hard to stop eating. One ounce of macadamia averages about 16.5g of monounsaturated fat, 3.4g of saturated fat and 0.4g of polyunsaturated fat. Comprised mostly of the MONOUNSATURATED FATS, oleic acid and palmitoleic acid, macadamia nut consumption has been shown in research to reduce total LDL cholesterol and support cardiovascular health.

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Manuka Honey Benefits

The Superfood from New Zealand

Manuka honey is made by honeybees that source their nectar from the manuka tree flowers native to New Zealand and southeastern Australia. The manuka species, Leptospermum scoparium, is a bush-like tree with prickly leaves and large seed capsules. It is one of the first plants to grow on wild land that has been cleared. However, just because honey is labeled "manuka honey" does not mean it is the real deal. New Zealand is the main producer of mānuka honey with strict guidelines on all exported manuka honey products.

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What is Moringa Good For?

List of Key Attributes

Moringa (Moringa oleifera) is a powerful tree species in today's day and age. Firstly, because of its tenacious fast-growing nature and adaptability to different terrains. Secondly, because of its multiple uses and extraordinary nutritional benefits to humans. While all parts of the Moringa tree are useful, it is the small oval-shaped leaves that are especially utilized for their very high nutrient value. They are one of those special green superfoods that exemplify the healing potential of chlorophyll-rich plants. In India, it's known as "shobhanjana" which means "very favorable tree", making reference to these respected qualities.

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Chamomile Tea 101

Essential Info on this Worldwide Favorite

Chamomile tea is probably one of the most common herbal teas known around the world for its calming qualities and tasty flavor. Utilized in ancient Egypt and extensively in England and other parts of Europe throughout the Middle Ages, chamomile was listed in some of the first botanical pharmacopeia in Western Herbalism and is a classic herb garden tradition. There are several chamomile types but the main two species used for herbal teas are Roman chamomile (Chamaemelum nobile) and German chamomile (Matricaria chamomilla).

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8 Things About Teff

The Gluten-Free Ethiopian Superfood

What is Teff? Eragrostis tef is an annual lovegrass species that is grown for its edible seeds called "teff" which are cooked whole or used as a flour. Native to the Horn of Africa, it's the smallest type of grain used by humans measuring about 1/100th the size of a kernel of wheat. The name in fact comes from the Amharic word "teffa" (ጠፍፋ) meaning "loss", probably making reference to the teeny tiny seeds that can tend to get lost during the harvesting process. Teff's poppy seed-like size enables the whole grain to cook rather quickly, usually taking only 15-20 minutes on a stovetop.

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Superfoods for Detox Support

These are our favorite superfoods for detox options to consider adding to the diet on a periodic basis when cleansing protocols might be in order. Since we are all exposed to some form of toxins on a day-to-day basis, it is good to have a handy list of herbs, supplements and drinks that help clean them out on occasion to assist the body's own natural detoxification processes.

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Benefits of Hemp Milk

Why It's the Best Way to Eat Hemp Seed

Hemp milk is made from hemp seeds, one of the superfoods from the hemp plant known for its many uses as a food, fiber, fuel and supplement source. Some manufacturers have coined the term "hemp hearts", which are the tiny cream-colored seeds with some green husks but the outer shells removed. These seeds are also utilized to make hemp seed oil, hemp seed butter, hemp seed flour and hemp protein powder. Hemp seeds are used to make a great tasting milk alternative with a creamy consistency close to that of cow's milk.

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Home Remedies for Brittle Nails

And Nutritional Deficiencies

Have you ever wondered "why do my fingernails break so frequently?" This could be nails that tend to split, crack, tear or chip easily. Other nail signs of health problems may include vertical ridges on nails or thin nails that take a long time to grow. Nutritional deficiencies are a common cause of nail weakness, so it's good to know what superfoods, vitamins, herbs and supplements you can take if supporting strong thick nail growth is a health objective. Here are 5 home remedies for brittle nails plus the top list of nail-nourishing vitamins and minerals.

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Benefits of Citrus Fruit

Much More Than Vitamin C

Citrus trees are quite amazing in that they can produce large bright-colored juicy sweet fruits in the peak of winter. Citrus types like oranges can likewise be a reviving treat in these colder months when many people crave their immune-nourishing nutrients. Of course, one of the most famous nutritional benefits of citrus fruit is that all are very high in VITAMIN C, but there are other amazing aspects about citrus you may be less familiar with.

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What is Paprika Made Of?

12 Facts About This Household Spice

What is paprika made of exactly and is it from a particular spice plant species? Paprika can technically come from any kind of Capsicum annuum red pepper. Although is it commonly made from less pungent red chili pepper varieties, the spice doesn’t originate from one particular type. Most paprika is made from the pericarp or fruit flesh of the pepper and contains little to no seeds, giving the powder its iconic bright red color. Depending on where paprika is from, it can be sourced from a number of Capsicum annuum varietals or cultivars that are indeed created for paprika production.

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Natural Sleep Aids

Superfoods for Insomnia

This is our list of natural sleep aid including foods, herbs, vitamins and supplements to select from if you're someone who has short-term or chronic insomnia. It is estimated that between 1 and 3 people worldwide have occasional short-term insomnia and 1 in 10 people have chronic insomnia or nightly sleeplessness that lasts over several weeks. There are of course certain dietary adjuncts that can also influence better sleep.

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Health Benefits of Kale

7 Reasons to Eat It and When to Avoid

What are the health benefits of kale? Kale is a winter leafy green vegetable known for its highly nutritious large leaves. One of the most common kale types is curly kale but others like lacinato, also called cavolo nero or dinosaur kale, are also popular for their bumpy rounded leaves. Why are the many varieties of kale often called superfoods? Here are 7 reasons why you might want to eat more, plus when kale is best avoided.

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What is the Mediterranean Diet?

The Healthy Diet Series

The Mediterranean diet is a melting pot of shared lifestyle and food traditions developed over a period of centuries in locations around the Mediterranean Sea. The term "Mediterranean" diet is really in fact a misnomer as it implies that all people of the Mediterranean region eat the same, which is simply not the case. Generally, however, there are similar food, drink and diet patterns between the cultures of this environment. Unlike other popular diets, like the Keto diet, the Mediterranean diet is not strict about keeping track of daily calories, carbohydrates or protein and fat ratios.

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Albizia Julibrissin Benefits

The "Tree of Happiness"

Albizia julibrissin also called "silk tree", is known for its unique fuchsia pink-tipped silky thread-like flowers that burst like fireworks when in bloom. You may also recognize albizia as a variety of mimosa, frequently viewed as a favored landscape ornamental as well as invasive seed spreading species. It's not just called the "tree of happiness" because of its cheery-looking pom pom-like flowers that can make one smile. One of the things you may not be familiar with when it comes to Albizia julibrissin is its long history as an herbal species.

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Kiwano Melon

8 Things About

Kiwano melon (Cucumis metuliferus) is an unusual looking melon variety that you may have noticed in the tropical fruit section of your local market next to dragon fruit, jackfruit or star fruit. It is frequently called African horned cucumber which simultaneously identifies its place of origin. Likewise, it is jokingly referred to as "cuke-a-saurus" because of its cross resemblance to a lemon cucumber and a type of back-spiked dinosaur. Kiwano fruit, like other melons, is a vine-growing plant. The size averages about 6 inches (15 cm) long and 4 inches (10 cm) wide.

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Red Banana Nutrition

Comparison to Yellow Banana

The red banana is not a wild species but is actually cultivated and from the same AAA group as common yellow bananas, like the Cavendish. Both are considered "dessert bananas" rather than "cooking bananas". The most popular cultivar in North and Central America is the Red Dacca, but there are many others depending on the region grown. Red banana is usually short, straight and plump whereas the yellow banana is long, curved and slender. The unpeeled red banana can also have a more flattened look compared to yellow.

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Boiled Bay Leaves

3 Unusual Uses

While the burning bay leaf manifestation trend is quite fascinating as a way to increase success, especially in the prosperity department which we will later discuss, there are other amazing yet unusual uses of bay leaves when prepared as a tea. This is thanks to several unique compounds and their health properties. There are different types of bay species growing worldwide, all from either the laurel or myrtle family. Being from the Western U.S., we are very familiar with the wild California Bay Umbellularia californica. However, Laurus nobilis or "bay laurel" is the one most utilized commercially and a common staple found in many kitchen spice racks.

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Constipation Home Remedies

Top Natural Favorites

Triphala powder is a specific Ayurvedic formulation composed of three dried fruits: amalaki, haritaki and bibhitaki. It is one of India's most valued and commonly utilized household herbs and supplements for constipated conditions. Used on a daily basis to improve bowel regularity, triphala powder (also called triphala churna) is viewed as a tridoshic herbal formula, considered good for many different body constitutions

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Wild Manzanita Berries and Leaves

Food and Folk Uses

We wouldn't be doing our wild foods list a favor if we didn't mention one of our local California favorites, the manzanita species. Many of you who happen to live in Western North America may be familiar with the thick dense grey-green leaves and beautiful smooth sometimes shedding bark of this magical shrub. Manzanita is a popular food source for bears, coyotes and various ground animals. Here, we will discuss the several folk uses of manzanita berries and leaves for humans and how to prepare them.

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Benefits of Chia Seeds Vs Flax Seeds

Which is Better?

Flax and chia are two fairly well-known superfoods that support body weight management. However, when it comes to weight loss diets, flax is the star of the show. Yes, chia is still good, but flax is even better. That's because golden and brown flax seeds are higher in soluble fiber, a mucilage or gel-like substance that occurs when the seeds are soaked in water. While chia is actually higher in total fiber compared to flax, chia seeds only contain about half as much soluble fiber.

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5 Sea Lettuce Facts

About Nutrition and Quality

Can You Eat Sea Lettuce? Yes, sea lettuce is an edible seaweed! A commonplace staple in many coastal regions of the globe, it is prevalent worldwide along rocky marine shorelines in both colder and tropical ocean waters. Sea lettuce is used in its raw state, either fresh or dried, as well as added to cooked foods to nutritionally fortify the diet. It is available as a dried whole leaf seaweed or as flakes.

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Herbs and Foods for Healthy Skin

A List of 12

This is our list of foods for healthy skin. By "foods" we mean everything from everyday staples to herbs, superfoods and drinks. These are our top 12 favorites; we hope you enjoy. 1) SCHIZANDRA - Schizandra berry is one of the famous "beauty tonics" highly revered throughout East Asian history, especially by women. It is still traditionally used as an important botanical in many skin-rejuvenating formulas and is often associated with the Taoist goddess Magu, a deity representing eternal beauty.

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Top 2 Health Benefits of Turmeric

What the Research Says

The amazing health benefits of turmeric root (Curcuma longa) come from its bright yellow-orange phenolic antioxidant known as CURCUMIN. This is the main component known to provide for turmeric's impressive array of useful properties. Here are the top two most profound science-based ways that adding turmeric spice and/or a turmeric curcumin supplement to the diet can be a medicinal helper on your healing journey. We'll also discuss how to take turmeric and the best ways to use it for optimal results.

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Himalayan Salt Vs Sea Salt

7 Major Differences

The first difference between Himalayan salt vs sea salt is that Himalayan is considered a type of rock salt. Different than sea salt, it has to be mined from the earth rather than collected along the sea shore. Both forms occur from the evaporation of saltwater or saline lakes. However, sea salts by comparison are newly formed salt deposits that collect on the earth's surface. Himalayan salt is an ancient salt that's been compressed over millions of years. It's believed to be one of the purest unpolluted forms of salt for this reason.

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Is Stevia Healthy?

The Truth About This Sugar Substitute

Yes, stevia sweetener is considered a healthier option, but not all stevia is created equal. We will further discuss the best stevia to use, plus why it was banned, any potential side effects and if stevia will break ketosis when following a keto diet. But first, why is stevia healthy? Stevia (pronounced stee-vee-ah) comes from the green leaves of the plant Stevia rebaudiana. Highly marketed as a "zero-calorie" sweetener, stevia is considered a good choice for those looking for a natural sugar substitute, replacing artificial sweeteners as well as other high-calorie sugars.

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The Power of Clove Tea

And Clove Oil for Hair Growth

What is the power of clove tea? It's been used for many things both internally and topically throughout the ages. Often valued for its most aromatic and potent antioxidant compound known as EUGENOL, this is one of the secrets to clove that give it exceptional qualities above others. Many herbs and spices, like nutmeg and allspice, also contain eugenol in smaller amounts, but cloves or the Syzygium aromaticum species is by far the #1 source. Clove tea is a traditional herbal anti-inflammatory, antibacterial, respiratory and immune supporting ally. However, the external application of clove tea and clove oil for hair growth is probably one of its most famous uses.

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Nutritional Yeast

Top 5 Benefits Simplified

Is nutritional yeast vegan? Yes, it's an inactive dried yeast that has a unique flavor similar to Parmesan cheese but doesn't contain dairy. It is, therefore, most well-known among those adhering to a vegan or vegetarian diet, especially as a food topping. It's also a source of naturally occurring glutamic acid, which provides benefits as a taste enhancer, giving it a mouth-watering umami flavor that can make it hard to stop eating. Wondering how to make nutritional yeast?

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Cleansing with Lemon Water

5 Benefits for Detox

What detox drink is incredibly inexpensive to make yet comes with loads of benefits? It's plain and simple lemon water! While long-time health enthusiasts have been drinking it for decades, lemon water is now a popular way to encourage one of the fundamental basics of health... the release of accumulated wastes and toxins. We give instructions on exactly how to make lemon water below for best results, but first, let’s discuss what makes lemon juice especially beneficial when added to water from a detoxification standpoint.

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