Hippocrates, the father of medicine, said ’Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food’. Throughout its history, food has not only been used to nourish our bodies, but it has also been used for healing.
These foods, known as functional foods, contain nutritional benefits that improve our health and well-being as well as assist with disease prevention. Not only do they have a long history of use with their medicinal benefits, but recent scientific research has revealed even more extraordinary benefits of these foods.
There are many functional foods, namely, fruits, vegetables, whole grains, dairy, legumes, nuts and spices that contain effective nutrients.
Cinnamon is one of our oldest spices and it was even cited in the Bible. Its history lies in its use in ancient Egypt as a medicine for fever and nausea and it was so highly cherished that it was deemed more treasurable than gold!
Blood Sugar control
Boosts brain function
Oats have been used across the world for over 2000 years. Before they were used as food, they were utilised as a medicine to treat leprosy and skin conditions.
Lower cholesterol levels
Enhances Immune response
Stabilises blood sugar
Protects against cancer
The origins of Linseed can be traced as far back as 10,000 BC. Linseeds were used to treat bronchitis, respiratory catarrh, boils and digestive illnesses as well as being spun into linen.
Highest source of Omega 3 Fatty Acids
Assists with digestive health
Antioxidant and anti-inflammatory Benefit
Protects against cancer
Chia Seeds originated in Mexico and South America are were used by Mayan and Aztec cultures for their supernatural powers! They are high in fibre, protein, omega 3 fatty acids, calcium and antioxidants.
Assists with skin and ageing
Improves digestive health
Makes your bones stronger
Boosts energy levels and metabolism
Assists with muscle growth
Peanuts originated in South America 3500 years ago. They were a staple in the Aztecs and Native Indian diets and were used as sacrificial offerings as well as grounded into maize as a drink.
Protects your heart
High in anti-oxidants
Protects against Alzheimer’s and age cognitive decline
Cacao / Cocoa
Cocoa originated in Mexico and was known as the Food of Gods by the Aztecs, Mayas and Incas. It became its first form of chocolate when Christopher Columbus mixed it with vanilla and sugar to make a beverage which he served too wealthy and powerful European. It was known for its aphrodisiac qualities.
Assists with premenstrual symptoms
Enhances mood and cognitive function
Protects skin from UV damage
Ginger has been both a popular spice and herbal medicine for thousands of years. It is also a highly cherished food in both Ayurveda and Traditional Chinese Medicine. Its long history has seen it used to treat digestion, nausea, colds, headaches, arthritis, colic and heart conditions across Asian, Indian and Arabic cultures. Ginger is native to Asia and has been used as a spice there for 4,400 years.
Treats motion sickness and nausea
High anti-inflammatory effects
Immune boosting benefits
Reduces menstural pain
Maca is a root vegetable from Peru. It is part of the Brassicaceae family of vegetables (i.e cruciferous vegetables which also include brocolli, cabbage, kale, turnip etc), and is an excellent source source of vitamin C, copper, iron and potassium. Studies suggest that maca may be beneficial for sexual function, mood and energy.
Improves sexual function.
BE YOU BE FREE food as medicine BALLS
TO Make 14 balls YOU WILL NEED :
100 grams of rolled oats
40 grams of almond meal
20 grams of 100% cacao powder
20 grams of chia Seeds
20 grams of linseeds
One- two heaped tablespoons of natural peanut butter
One teaspoon cinnamon powder
One teaspoon ginger spice powder
10 grams of maca powder
One heaped tablespoon of organic brown rice syrup or sweetner of choice
50 ml of coconut water
Put all the ingredients in mixing bowl and blend in a food processor except for 20 grams of almond meal.
(I put on the kneading setting and leave for a couple of minutes). It should blend into one big lump. if not add a little bit more coconut water.
If you don't have access to a food processor, you can just mix manually with a wooden spoon in a mixing bowl.
Pour 20g of almond meal onto a plate.
Measure out one heaped teaspoon of mixture.
Roll mixture into small balls over the almond meal (you can also use coconut flakes)
You can eat them right away or put them in fridge in an air right container.
Keep them in the fridge for up 2 weeks!