National Women’s Health & Fitness Day 2014: Natural Food Remedies for Women

By Derek Henry, www.healingthebody.ca
September 24, 2014 9:25 am Last Updated: September 24, 2014 9:37 am
By Derek Henry, Holistic Health Coach for Healing the Body
 
David Wolfe, world-renowned raw foodist, recently noted 10 super foods that can be consumed regularly with great implications for women’s health (and I would argue men as well).  As he reminds us, “if you lose your health, you’ve lost everything”.  Check out these natural food remedies for women so you can help regain or strengthen your health.

Superfoods are quite simply nutrient dense and complex foods that deliver an exponential punch in comparison to foods often consumed on a daily basis. Utilizing them consistently will dramatically alter your health.

Here are a few that can really accelerate healing your body, or simply fortify it.

Medicinal Mushrooms

As quoted by David Wolfe, “High in super immune-enhancing polysaccharides such as beta glucans, medicinal mushrooms are one of the most intelligent adaptogenic herbs/superfoods on the planet. Reishi mushroom (also known as Ganoderma), the “mushroom of immortality,” is an immune system nutrient that is suitable for nearly anyone to take, even children.  Reishi is the most well studied herb in the history of the world. Reishi has antioxidant properties that protect the body from radiation and free radicals. It inhibits bacteria, viruses, treats tumors and its adaptogenic quality protects the body against stress. It also treats heart disease and high blood pressure.”

In my 4 years of dealing with Reishi mushrooms (Ganoderma) personally, and in others, I have found that it is one of the best ‘all around’ food remedies you can take for healing, regeneration, and energy.  It’s ability to balance and normalize all the bodily functions makes it a must for anyone who is serious about healing their body and taking their health to another level.

Omega 3 Fatty Acids

David says “These are especially important for women because they perform a number of functions in the body from balancing hormones to improving skin and hair.”

Good omega 3 fatty acids are one of those food remedies that are generally devoid in today’s world, and are required for proper brain function as well. Typically associated with fish intake, it has become more difficult to get a clean source due to mercury levels.  However, there are other forms such as flax, hemp and chia that can help you avoid that issue if you are not comfortable with your source. Read labels and look for those who specifically indicate they have went through a purification process.

B-Vitamins

David correctly notes “These vitamins are highly correlated with our ability to handle stress.  B-12 gets used up in our body quickly just by the stresses and toxicity found in our environment on a daily basis.”

As a population gorging ourselves on conventional grains we get plenty of the lower B’s (although, when not organic this is suspect), but we miss getting the very important B-12.  A super food not on this list, but excellent in B-Vitamins including 12, is bee pollen which should be noted due to its dramatic healing properties.

Stress does deplete B-Vitamins, so it has become even more important to supplement in order to keep those levels at an appropriate range.

Maca

One of David’s favorite food remedies, he notes that “this adaptogenic super food increases energy, endurance, strength and libido. Dried maca powder contains more than 10% protein, nearly 20 amino acids, and 7 essential amino acids. It offers incredible hormone regulation from the top down, supporting the hypothalamus, the pituitary gland, the thyroid, and the adrenals. Maca is also rich in B Vitamins.”

I have consumed maca for years, and it is excellent for strength and energy. It is also an incredible adaptogen, and is very beneficial for helping balance the hormones.  You may want to strongly consider this as one of your food remedies before, during, and after pregnancy.

Probiotics

David references Donna Gates, the author of the “The Body Ecology Diet”, who “advocates consuming a combination of good quality probiotics as well as cultured and fermented foods like coconut water kefir, while reducing sugar intake. This will lead to enhanced immunity as the beneficial bacteria in your body work as part of the immune system.”

Probiotics have become crucial to everyones health, including women. Since 80% of people are dealing with an imbalance within their inner ecosystem, and 30% have a severe issue, a quality source of probiotics is essential in order for proper healing in the body and maintain good health.

Coconut kefir is magic when it comes to food remedies and balancing your intestinal system, and the Body Ecology diet is an excellent resource to get ideas and recipes on how you can get a good probiotic into your system through food and beverage, every single day.

Start making coconut kefir or get a good quality probiotic.

Astragulus

“Astragalus has antioxidants that protects the cell against damage caused by free radicals and is used to protect and support the body’s immune system, including improving the power of the lungs.”

This is another great adaptogen, and typically can be found in superfood formulations.

Goji Berries

David notes “goji berries are regarded as a longevity, strength-building, and potency food of the highest order. This superfood contains 18 kinds of amino acids, all 8 essential amino acids, up to 21 trace minerals, high amounts of antioxidants, iron, polysaccharides, B and E vitamins, and many other nutrients. They are very high in antioxidants, especially eyesight improving zeaxanthin.”

I use goji berries all the time in smoothies.  They are very healing to the liver, and have a wide array of nutrients and minerals to help address deficiencies you are undoubtedly dealing with due to poor quality food supply and other environmental factors.

Cacao

Arguably David’s favorite super food “cacao is the highest antioxidant food on the planet, the #1 source of magnesium, iron, chromium, manganese and is also extremely high in PEA. Cacao’s theobromine adds cardiovascular support. Raw chocolate balances brain chemistry, builds strong bones, is a natural aphrodisiac, and elevates your mood”.

Cacao is a powerful super food, but has been bastardized and put into products that ruin it’s potency like conventional chocolate bars.  If you can find pure cacao, you will note that it tastes a bit more bitter, but if balanced with other ingredients correctly, you will find it is delicious and MUCH better for you than the typical fare.

Cacao is great healing superfood as it elevates your mood, and creates happiness.

Here is an excellent example of what good chocolate looks and tastes like!

Aloe Vera

“The gel of raw aloe vera contains vitamins A, C, and E, the minerals sulfur, calcium, magnesium, zinc, selenium, and chromium, as well as antioxidants, fiber, amino acids, enzymes, sterols, lignans, and most importantly, polysaccharides. The polysaccharides in aloe vera have a particular lubricating effect on the joints, brain, nervous system and the skin. They also have immuno-modulating effects, allowing the body to fight back chronic viral, nanobacterial and fungal infections.”

Aloe Vera is one of those food remedies that are excellent for intestinal health. It is antibacterial and very healing to the intestinal lining, which is a major plus considering most people are living with an abundance of bad bacteria in their system, and an inflamed intestinal wall as a result of it.  Quite simply, aloe vera is a must in your superfoods list.

(Shutterstock*)
(Shutterstock*)

A Superfood Drink Recipe

A simple drink that incorporates a few of these food remedies is a great way to start your morning:

3 tablespoons of Cacao
1 teaspoon of Maca
1/2 teaspoon of Reishi (Ganoderma)
1/2 teaspoon of Cinnamon
6 large pitted dates (or your choice of natural sweetener)
4 oz of Sprouted Almond Milk
12 oz of hot water
1/8 teaspoon of cayenne pepper

*Images of “smoothie” and “woman” via Shutterstock