As the generation sandwiched between moody teenagers and aging parents, our attention is tugged in two directions. Even after long work days end our work is not done. We end up exhausted with aching muscles and a throbbing head more often than not. While getting some relief from family obligations may not come any time soon, we can work on the physical side effects we are suffering.
Headaches and Muscle Aches.
In my personal experience I sometimes get ocular migraines. I went to the traditional remedy we are all instructed to take without questioning, but that treatment never really helped me and at least half a day would be lost until I felt normal again. Then I got to thinking about the effect of foods like arugula, spinach, and beets which contain nitrates and allow the blood vessels to relax. Just the thing for migraines. I tried both eating cooked beets and drinking a juice shot of fresh beet juice. Both worked perfectly! I will caution that if you have persistent headaches or migraines you need to have a physician determine the source, but I was kind of amazed with the results! A food could help me to alleviate may symptoms without the side effects of a medication. Big win!
Foods that are high in nitrates can help to boost stamina by increasing oxygen uptake. Excellent! Don’t you often feel like some kind of amazing athlete while you juggle task after task on an average day, many of them more physical than your zumba class? Yup, let’s hear it for a stamina boost.The evidence is out there supporting the effects of tart cherry juice on decreasing post exercise muscle soreness in athletes. But what about everyday athletes? Leaning over a computer, picking up after children, and supporting elderly parents can certainly bring on some muscle aches. I recommend a tart cherry juice treatment for that.
Putting the Benefits Together
I usually steam or roast red beets and store them in the fridge to be chopped and dressed with a vinaigrette. Often I’ll grate raw beets into a salad or put one through my juicer. I keep a bottle of tart cherry juice around to splash into smoothies or juices post workout. But I recently tried some packets of Beet Boost which is a combination of dried beets and tart cherries. There are times when my fridge is not accessible and carrying around a packet of Beet Boost is much more convenient, especially when I feel a headache coming on and I want to get those nitrates on board asap. This powder can be blended into water, juice, or a smoothie or even added to recipes like baked goods or energy bars.
I created my own beet and tart cherry energy bites and shared them with friends. Wow! These are just yummy and a big hit. You get a punch of protein plus the benefits of the nitrates and antioxidants. Wait, there’s more! I rolled the bites in a coating of coconut oil and dark chocolate so as a bonus you get more antioxidants and a type of fat called MCT (medium chain triglycerides) which are more quickly absorbed and used for energy.
Fresh Balance Nutrition has teamed up with Beet Boost to share a special offer with you! Receive 20% off of any Beet Boost product with code balance20
Beet and Tart Cherry Energy Bites
- 1 cup almond flour
- ½ cup shredded unsweetened coconut
- ⅓ cup quinoa, cooked
- ⅓ cup cacao
- 2 packets Beet Boost, or 2 scoops
- ⅓ cup sunbutter
- ¼ cup honey
- ¼ cup coconut oil
- ½ cup bittersweet chocolate chips
- Place almond flour, coconut, quinoa, cacao, and Beet Boost in a large bowl. Add sunbutter and honey. Blend together.
- Scoop teaspoons of mixture and form small balls. Arrange on a parchment paper lined baking sheet and chill in the freezer for 20 minutes.
- Meanwhile place coconut oil and chocolate chips in a small microwave safe bowl. Heat on 50% power for 30 seconds, stir. Repeat until chips are melted and blended with coconut oil.
- Remove balls from freezer and roll in melted chocolate. Place back on lined baking sheet. Sprinkle with shredded coconut or finely chopped nuts if desired.
- Chill balls for 1 hour. Store in refrigerator.
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