Berry Beet Smoothie Bowl

Berry Beet Smoothie Bowl

Berries and beets are chock full of anthocyanins, which are a type of flavonoid with antioxidant, anti-inflammatory and anti-viral effects! Anthocyanins are the pigments that give these foods — raspberries, blueberries, beets, and so on — their deep red, purple and blue hues.

You can read more about the Power of Berries, including their ability potential inhibit viruses within human cells, in this detailed blog post!

This recipe is easy, delicious, and fun to look at!

Berry Beet Smoothie Bowl

Berries and beets are chock full of anthocyanins, which are a type of flavonoid with antioxidant, anti-inflammatory and anti-viral effects!
Total Time 10 mins
Course Breakfast
Servings 2
Calories 136 kcal

Ingredients
  

  • 1 Beet (medium, peeled, diced)
  • 1 cup Frozen Mango
  • 1 cup Frozen Raspberries
  • 1 tbsp Pitted Dates
  • 1 tsp Schisandra Berry Powder (optional)
  • 1 cup Unsweetened Almond Milk

Instructions
 

  • In your blender or food processor, combine the beet, frozen mango, frozen raspberries, dates, schisandra berry powder and milk. Blend until smooth and thick.
  • Transfer to a bowl and add toppings. Enjoy!

Notes

Nutritional Information
Amount per serving:
Calories – 136
Carbs – 29g
Fiber – 6g
Sugars – 22g
Protein – 3g
Fat – 2g
The Power of Berries To Support Your Immune System

The Power of Berries To Support Your Immune System

The Power of Berries Koru Nutrition

Anthocyanins are a type of flavonoid, a class of compounds with antioxidant effects. Anthocyanins are the pigments that are responsible for giving fruits and vegetables their red, purple, and blue colours, which is commonly found in berries such as pomegranates, grapes, bilberryelderberry, black currants, blueberries, raspberries, blackberries, and cranberries.

Anthocyanins may offer anti-inflammatory, anti-cancer and even anti-viral, benefits. In fact studies show that there is a positive relationship between antiviral activity and polyphenol content of the berries, indicating the possibility that polyphenol is one of the key factors in the antiviral effects of berries (1,2). Studies have shown that anthocyanins can prevent influenza viruses from penetrating human cells and may inhibit viral release once the cell is infected (5).

With this in mind let’s have a look at how berries can help support our immunity.

Bilberries

Based on certain studies, the Vitamin C content in a bilberry is five times higher than that in an orange.

Researchers at the Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis focused on the effects of flavonoids — antioxidants found in dark chocolate, bilberries and red wine — on intestinal microbiota, researchers found that these nutrients could “collaborate” with certain microbiota bacteria to combat influenza and other viral infections. The results of the study indicate that interaction between the bacteria and the flavonoids does not target flu viruses directly, but rather stimulates a response that prevented the immune system from harming lung tissue (3) while fighting the illness.

Black Currant

Black currant seed oil contains a chemical called gamma-linolenic acid (GLA). Some research suggests that GLA might improve the immune system, making it more able to fight off disease. Blackcurrants are also one of the densest known sources of the polyphenol antioxidant class called anthocyanins, which have been shown to help our immune system defend us against other viral infections, such as those that cause enteritis and common colds (4).

Researchers at Japan’s Asahikawa Medical College examined the effects of blackcurrants against influenza virus A and B (IVA and IVB).  The results showed both viruses were inactivated up to 99.9%. When IVA-infected cells were treated with blackcurrant extracts, the virus was completely suppressed in six hours. This study showed that not only can blackcurrant extracts inhibit IVA and IVB on contact, they also may prevent further infection by blocking the viruses’ ability to leave infected cells (4).

Increasing evidence suggests anthocyanins may support immunity by making the immune system more efficient at fighting and clearing a virus when it does encounter one (6,7). The way the polyphenol anthocyanins in blackcurrants work with the immune system means that if we do get sick, the severity and subsequent tissue damage from the infection may be decreased (8), thus allowing us to recover faster.

Pomegranate

Limited studies have been conducted on the antiviral activities associated with pomegranate and its extracts. Despite this, the studies that have been completed have identified anti-viral effects against clinically relevant influenza virus, herpes virus, poxviruses, and human immunodeficiency (HIV-1) virus [10–12].

Haslam (13) suggested that plant polyphenols exert a direct action on the viral particles, inhibiting the adsorption of the virus to the host cell receptors.

The tannins and anthocyanins are the main compounds associated with the beneficial effects of pomegranate consumption. In one study, the flavonoid, punicalagin found in pomegranate was shown to have inhibitory effects on influenza virus [15].  It is possible that pomegranate juice and extracts could be potentially useful in inhibiting viruses transmitted via infected food products, bodily fluids, and so forth (16).

Elderberry

The elderberry is reputed by some to be effective in treating the common cold, flu, and sinus infections. It also has antiviral properties that may prevent or reduce the severity of certain common infections. In fact, a study completed in 2012 suggested that elderberry could help prevent influenza infection by stimulating an immune response (17) and a 2019 study on elderberry for both cold and flu suggested that the fruit substantially reduced upper-airway symptoms (18).

A 2016 study from Australia reported that, among 312 long-haul airline passengers, those who used elderberry extract 10 days before and five days after their flight had 50 percent fewer sick days resulting from a cold than those who didn’t. What elderberry did not appear to do was reduce the risk of getting a cold; both the elderberry group and placebo group had more or less the same number of infections (19), but in the passengers who used elderberry symptoms were less severe based on a scoring of upper respiratory tract symptoms.

Cranberry

The study, published in Nutrition Journal, found that individuals who drank a low calorie cranberry beverage with similar polyphenol content to cranberry juice cocktail every day for 10 weeks had nearly five times more growth of immune-boosting cells and significantly fewer cold and flu symptoms than non-cranberry consumers. Researchers observed that the fruit’s immunity benefits came from the presence of yδ-T cells, which are the body’s first line of defence against harmful bacteria. By improving their function, scientists believe we can reduce the number of symptoms associated with the common cold and flu (20).

Summary

To support your immune system and potentially help reduce respiratory virus symptom severity, make sure you consume your berries every day! Put them in salads, smoothies, yogurt or oatmeal, or even on their own as a healthy snack.

For inspiration to include more berries in your diet, check out our Berry Beet Smoothie Bowl.

Or, if you struggle to get berries into your diet or to eat enough variety of berries you may want to explore a whole food berry supplement.

 

References

  1. Duymuş HG, Göger F, Başer KH. In vitro antioxidant properties and anthocyanin compositions of elderberry extracts.Food Chemistry. 2014 Jul 15;155:112-9. doi:10.1016/j.foodchem.2014.01.028
  2. J Sci Food Agric. 2013 Jul;93(9):2239-41. doi: 10.1002/jsfa.6031. Epub 2013 Jan 28. Relationship between polyphenol content and anti-influenza viral effects of berries. Sekizawa H1, Ikuta K, Mizuta K, Takechi S, Suzutani T.
  3. Ashley L. Steed, George P. Christophi et al The microbial metabolite desaminotyrosine protects from influenza through type I interferon, Science 04 Aug 2017:Vol. 357, Issue 6350, pp. 498-502
  4. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/24660461
  5. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/17572513
  6. http://www.nzblackcurrants.com/assets/images/Health-Benefits-review-updated-9-November-2012.pdf
  7. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/17634269
  8. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/20229526
  9. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/18241960
  10. Haidari, M. Ali, S. W. Casscells, and M. Madjid, “Pomegranate (Punica granatum) purified polyphenol extract inhibits influenza virus and has a synergistic effect with oseltamivir,” Phytomedicine, vol. 16, no. 12, pp. 1127–1136, 2009.View at: Publisher Site | Google Scholar
  11. Neurath, N. Strick, Y. Y. Li, and A. K. Debnath, “Punica granatum (pomegranate) juice provides an HIV-1 entry inhibitor and candidate topical microbicide,” in Natural Products and Molecular Therapy, G. J. Kotwal and D. K. Lahiri, Eds., vol. 1056, pp. 311–327, New York Academy of Sciences, 2005.View at: Google Scholar
  12. J. Kotwal, “Genetic diversity-independent neutralization of pandemic viruses (e.g. HIV), potentially pandemic (e.g. H5N1 strain of influenza) and carcinogenic (e.g. HBV and HCV) viruses and possible agents of bioterrorism (variola) by enveloped virus neutralizing compounds (EVNCs),” Vaccine, vol. 26, no. 24, pp. 3055–3058, 2008.View at: Publisher Site | Google Scholar
  13. Haslam, “Natural polyphenols (vegetable tannins) as drugs: possible modes of action,” Journal of Natural Products, vol. 59, no. 2, pp. 205–215, 1996.
  14. Aviram, N. Volkova, R. Coleman et al., “Pomegranate phenolics from the peels, arils, and flowers are antiatherogenic: studies in vivo in atherosclerotic apolipoprotein E-deficient (E-o) mice and in vitro in cultured macrophages and upoproteins,” Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry, vol. 56, pp. 1148–1157, 2008.View at: Google Scholar
  15. G. Kasimsetty, D. Bialonska, M. K. Reddy, C. Thornton, K. L. Willett, and D. Ferreira, “Effects of pomegranate chemical constituents/intestinal microbial metabolites on CYP1B1 in 22Rv1 prostate cancer cells,” Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry, vol. 57, no. 22, pp. 10636–10644, 2009.View at: Publisher Site | Google Scholar
  16. https://www.hindawi.com/journals/ecam/2013/606212/
  17. Kinoshita E, Hayashi K, Katayama H, Hayashi T, Obata A. Anti-influenza virus effects of elderberry juice and its fractionsBiosci Biotechnol Biochem. 2012;76(9):1633–1638. doi:10.1271/bbb.120112
  18. Hawkins J, Baker C, Cherry L, Dunne E. Black elderberry (Sambucus nigra) supplementation effectively treats upper respiratory symptoms: A meta-analysis of randomized, controlled clinical trials. Complement Ther Med. 2019;42:361–365. doi:10.1016/j.ctim.2018.12.004
  19. Tiralongo E, Wee S, Lea R. Elderberry supplementation reduces cold duration and symptoms in air-travellers: A randomized, double-blind placebo-controlled clinical trial. Nutrients. 2016;8(4):182. doi:10.3390/nu8040182.
  20. https://nutritionj.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/1475-2891-12-161
Crispy Coconut Chicken Fingers Recipe

Crispy Coconut Chicken Fingers Recipe

Crispy Coconut Chicken Fingers Recipe Koru Nutrition

As you may have seen us post over on Facebook or Instagram, studies show a significant decrease is autistic traits in children following a gluten and dairy-free diet. Many children with autism are also picky eaters, which can make following a gluten and dairy-free diet challenging for caregivers.

Below, we’re sharing a new take on a classic favourite! Whether you’re transitioning to a gluten and dairy-free diet or not, these Crispy Coconut Chicken Fingers with Honey Mustard dipping sauce are a nutritious dinner option fit for the whole family!

crispy coconut chicken fingers recipe Koru Nutrition

Crispy Coconut Chicken Fingers Recipe

These Crispy Coconut Chicken Fingers with Honey Mustard dipping sauce are a nutritious dinner option fit for the whole family!
Total Time 45 mins
Course Main Course
Servings 6
Calories 326 kcal

Ingredients
  

  • 1 lb Chicken Breast (sliced into strips)
  • 1 cup Unsweetened Coconut Flakes
  • 1 Egg (whisked)
  • 1/4 cup Almond Flour
  • 1 cup Broccoli (cut into florets)
  • 1/2 cup Quinoa (uncooked)
  • 1 cup Water
  • 1 cup Frozen Peas
  • 1 tbsp Coconut Oil (melted)
  • 1/4 cup Yellow Mustard
  • 1 tbsp Raw Honey
  • Sea Salt & Black Pepper (to taste)

Instructions
 

  • Preheat oven to 400ºF (204ºC). Slice raw chicken breasts into long strips. Sprinkle each side with flour and dip in whisked egg. Then sprinkle both sides with shredded coconut. Line chicken fingers on a foil-lined baking sheet and bake for 24 minutes, flipping halfway through.
  • While your chicken cooks, place quinoa in a saucepan with the water. Bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce heat to a simmer and cover. Let simmer for 12 minutes. When finished, remove from heat and fluff with fork.
  • Lightly steam broccoli and coarsely chop with a knife. In a large bowl, mix together quinoa, broccoli, peas and coconut oil. Season with a bit of salt and pepper and mix well.
  • To make your dipping sauce, combine mustard and honey in a small bowl and stir well.
  • Plate chicken fingers with quinoa mix and serve with honey-mustard dipping sauce on the side. Enjoy!

Notes

Nutritional Information
Amount per serving:
Calories – 326
Carbs – 21g
Fiber – 5g
Sugars – 5g
Protein – 24g
Fat – 17g

Leftovers

Refrigerate in an airtight container for up to three days. For best results, reheat in the oven.

Serving Size

One serving is approximately two chicken fingers.
Smoked Salmon Egg Cups Recipe

Smoked Salmon Egg Cups Recipe

Top 5 Foods to Boost Brain Power Blueberries Koru Nutrition

Whether you’ve suffered a brain-injury or not — these brain-boosting Smoked Salmon Egg Muffins are the perfect breakfast!

 

smoked salmon egg cups recipe Koru Nutrition

Smoked Salmon Egg Cups Recipe

Whether you’ve suffered a brain-injury or not — these brain-boosting Smoked Salmon Egg Muffins are the perfect breakfast!
Total Time 25 mins
Course Appetizer
Servings 2

Ingredients
  

  • 1 1/2 tsps Avocado Oil
  • 6 Eggs
  • 1 tbsp Chives (chopped)
  • Sea Salt & Black Pepper (to taste)
  • 1 cup Baby Spinach (chopped)
  • 4 ozs Smoked Salmon (roughly chopped)

Instructions
 

  • Preheat the oven to 350ºF (177ºC) and lightly grease a muffin tin with avocado oil.
  • In a small bowl, whisk together the eggs, chives, salt and pepper.
  • Add the spinach and then the smoked salmon to each muffin tin, then pour the egg mixture on top. Bake for 20 minutes. Remove from the oven, let cool and enjoy!

Notes

Leftovers

Refrigerate in an airtight container for up to three days.

Serving Size

One serving is equal to two egg cups.

More Flavor

Add fresh dill or capers to the muffin tins.

 

Best Foods To Manage Your Stress

Best Foods To Manage Your Stress

best foods to manage stress koru nutrition

If you are like most people living in the modern world, stress has become part of your day to day life. When we are stressed, it’s quite easy to develop negative thinking patterns because we become frustrated by our challenges and frequent feelings of being overwhelmed. This negative outlook then makes it even harder for us to manage those challenges and move forward and break through the stress cycle.

Practicing positive thinking helps to focus on our strengths and accomplishments, which increases happiness and motivation. This, in turn, allows us to spend more time making progress, and less time feeling down and stuck.


Top 7 tips that can help you shift into more positive thinking patterns:


  1. Make Time to Exercise
  2. Regular exercise gets your blood moving which releases endorphins and can instantly improve your mood (i). Regular exercise enhances your sleep quality which can be negatively affected by stress (ii). Exercise has also been shown to make you crave a healthier diet (iii). It’s much easier to be positive when you take good care of yourself and are eating well, exercising, and getting enough rest.

  3. Remind Yourself of the Things You Are Grateful For
  4. Stresses and challenges don’t seem quite as bad when you are constantly reminding yourself of the things that are right in life. Taking just 60 seconds a day to stop and appreciate the good things will make a huge difference.

  5. Refrain from Using Absolutes
  6. Have you ever told a partner “You’re ALWAYS late!” or complained to a friend “You NEVER call me!”? Thinking and speaking in absolutes like ‘always’ and ‘never’ makes the situation seem worse than it is, and programs your brain into believing that certain people are incapable of delivering.

  7. Squash the “ANTs”
  8. In his book “Change Your Brain, Change Your Life,” Dr. Daniel Amen talks about “ANTs” – Automatic Negative Thoughts. These are the bad thoughts that are usually reactionary, like “Those people are laughing, they must be talking about me,” or “The boss wants to see me? It must be bad!” When you notice these thoughts, realize that they are nothing more than ANTs and squash them!

  9. Cuddle
  10. You don’t have to be an expert to know the benefits of a good hug. Positive physical contact with friends, loved ones, and even pets, is an instant pick me-up. Positive physical contact can help release oxytocin and lower cortisol which can help lower blood pressure and heart rate (iv). One research study on this subject had a waitress touch some of her customers on the arm as she handed them their checks. She received higher tips from these customers than from the ones she didn’t touch!

  11. Increase Your Social Activity
  12. Social support from friends and family can help get you through stressful times (v). By increasing social activity, you decrease loneliness. Surround yourself with healthy, happy people, and their positive energy will affect you in a positive way!

  13. Use Pattern Interrupts to Combat Rumination
  14. If you find yourself ruminating, a great way to stop it is to interrupt the pattern and force yourself to do something completely different. Rumination is like hyper-focus on something negative. It’s never productive, because it’s not rational or solution-oriented, it’s just excessive worry and stress. Try changing your physical environment – go for a walk or sit outside. You could also call a friend, pick up a book, or turn on some music.

stress busting foods koru nutrition

Stress Busting Foods

What are some of the best foods to eat for stress?

  • Fatty fish such as wild salmon and sardines contain omega-3 fats which have anti-inflammatory properties that may help counteract the negative effects of stress (vi).
  • Dark leafy greens such as kale, spinach and Swiss chard are rich in folate that is needed to produce dopamine and serotonin- pleasure inducing neurotransmitters that helps keep you calm (vii).
  • Fermented foods such as kimchi, kombucha, and sauerkraut contain beneficial bacteria that may positively impact your mood and brain health (viii).
  • Seeds such as flaxseeds, sunflower seeds, and pumpkin seeds are great sources of Magnesium, which acts as a precursor for neurotransmitters like serotonin, important for improving mood (viiii).

To find out more about how nutrition impacts your health, Koru offers comprehensive individualized nutrition programs.

The key to busting stress is making sure that you look after YOU. Have a look at your work life, your personal life and social life to see if there are any areas you can create more happiness. You might be surprised on what you find.

Passion Flower and Lavender Tea Koru Nutrition

PASSION FLOWER & LAVENDAR TEA RECIPE

Sipping a warm cup of herbal tea can help tame stress. Try the recipe below next time your mind and body need calming.

Ingredients:

  • 2 parts passion flower
  • 1 part lavender blossoms
  • 2 parts catnip
  • 1 part chamomile
  • 2 parts hibiscus flowers

Instructions:

  1. Mix the herbs together, making the batch as small or as large as you would like.
  2. Boil water and pour it into a mug. Place 1 teaspoon of your blend in a tea ball and place it in the mug.
  3. Allow to steep for 5-7 minutes.

*recipe from mommypotamus.com

References:

i. Regular exercise, anxiety, depression and personality: A population-based study. M.H.M.De MoorA.L.BeemJ.H.StubbeD.I.BoomsmaE.J.C.De Geus. Department of Biological Psychology, Vrije Universiteit, van der Boechorststraat 1, 1081 BT, Amsterdam, The Netherlands

ii. Sleep Med. 2010 Oct;11(9):934-40. doi: 10.1016/j.sleep.2010.04.014. Epub 2010 Sep 1.
Aerobic exercise improves self-reported sleep and quality of life in older adults with insomnia.
Reid KJ1, Baron KG, Lu B, Naylor E, Wolfe L, Zee PC.

iii. Wasantha P. Jayawardene, Mohammad R. Torabi & David K. Lohrmann (2016) Exercise in Young Adulthood with Simultaneous and Future Changes in Fruit and Vegetable Intake, Journal of the American College of Nutrition, 35:1, 59-67, DOI: 10.1080/07315724.2015.1022268

iv. Biol Psychiatry. 2009 May 1;65(9):728-31. doi: 10.1016/j.biopsych.2008.10.011. Epub 2008 Nov 22. Intranasal oxytocin increases positive communication and reduces cortisol levels during couple conflict. Ditzen B1, Schaer M, Gabriel B, Bodenmann G, Ehlert U, Heinrichs M.

v. J Natl Med Assoc. 2009 Mar;101(3):243-50. The association between perceived social support and health among patients at a free urban clinic. Cadzow RB1, Servoss TJ.

vi. Antidepressant-like effects of uridine and omega-3 fatty acids are potentiated by combined treatment in rats Carlezon, William A. et al. Biological Psychiatry , Volume 57 , Issue 4 , 343 – 350

vii. The associateion of folate and depression: A meta-analysis.

viii. Stress & the gut-brain axis: Regulation by the microbiome.

viiii. Role of Magnesium supplementation in the treatment of depression: A randomized clinical trial

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© 2020 Koru Nutrition Inc. All Rights Reserved.

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© 2020 Koru Nutrition Inc. All Rights Reserved.