This sweet pudding parfait is likely to put a smile on anyone’s face! It’s a bonus knowing that the ingredients in this parfait align with nutrition to support women’s health, specifically through menopause.
If you’d like to learn more about nutrition for menopause, check out our article Nutrition Strategies To Help Manage Your Menopause Symptoms.
One of the star ingredient in this recipe, flaxseed, is known for its level of phytoestrogens. The term phytoestrogens refer to estrogen-like compounds that are produced naturally by plants, instead of within the human body. These estrogen-like compounds are able to mimic the effect of estrogen, which is helpful for menopausal women who have estrogen levels that are declining. In studies examining menopausal women who consume a high phytoestrogen diet over six weeks, they are shown to have a decrease in hot flashes, night sweats, and flushing (1). It is important to note that there is concern about phytoestrogens disrupting our body’s natural hormone balance, but research supports that it would require significantly high levels of consumption to have a toxic impact (2).
This recipe also avoids the use of refined sugars by substituting maple syrup instead. Avoiding the use of refined sugars is beneficial as consumption typically leads to quick rises and sharp declines in blood sugar levels. This variability often results in challenges with mood, which is definitely the case for menopausal women. Evidence shows that women who had diets higher in refined carbs and sugars had a higher incidence of depression (3).
To add a pop of flavour and colour to this recipe blueberries and blackberries are included. While they are low in calories, these berries are filled with nutrients, including antioxidants. Blueberries and blackberries are known to be high in antioxidant compounds such as vitamin C, quercetin and anthocyanins, which help to fight oxidative stress in the body (4).
- Washburn, S., Burke, G., Morgan, T., & Anthony, M. (1999). Effect of soy protein supplementation on serum lipoporteins, blood pressure, and menopausal symptoms in perimenopausal women, Menopause, 6(1), 7-13. doi: 10100174.
- Patisaul, H., & Jefferson, W. (2010). The pros and cons of phytoestrogens. Frontier Neuroendocrinology, 31(4), 400-419. doi: 10.1016/j.yfrne.2010.03.003.
- Gangwisch, J., Hale, L., Garcia, L., Malaspina, D., Opler, M., Payne, M., … & Lane, D. (2015). High glycemic index diet as a risk factor for depression: analysis from the Women’s Health Initiative. American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, 102(2), 454-463. doi: 10.3945/ajcn.114.103846.
- Skrovankova, S., Sumczynski, D., Mlcek, J., Jurikova, T., & Sochor, J. (2015). Bioactive compounds and antioxidant activity in different types of berries. International Journal of Molecular Science, 16(10), 24673-24706. doi: 10.3390/ijms161024673.
Cinnamon Flax Pudding Parfait
- ¼ cup Ground Flax Seed
- ½ cup Whole Flax Seed
- 1 tbsp Chia Seed
- 1 tsp Cinnamon
- 1 cup Unsweetened Almond Milk
- 1 tbsp Maple Syrup
- 2 cups Unsweetened Coconut Yogurt
- ¼ cup Blueberries
- ¼ cup Blackberries
- ¼ cup Pecans crushed (optional)
- In a 500mL mason jar, or a bowl add whole and ground flaxseed, chia seeds, cinnamon, unsweetened almond milk and maple syrup. Shake or stir well to combine. Allow the pudding mixture to sit for at least 30 minutes, or overnight in the fridge.
- When you’re ready to eat, layer ½ cup pudding mixture,1/2 cup coconut yogurt.
- Top the parfaits with berries and pecans Enjoy!