This post is for the ladies in particular, because it’s about two really important foods that should feature in our diet as often as possible for their impressive health benefits and hormone-balancing qualities…
The two foods I highly recommend are flaxseeds and broccoli (but other cruciferous veggies, like cauliflower, cabbage and Brussels sprouts are beneficial too).
You will always find both flaxseed and broccoli in my kitchen as I’ve really tried to incorporate them into my daily diet over the past few years. It’s also handy that they’re easily available in supermarkets and relatively inexpensive. A packet of flaxseeds will last you for a good while!
Here’s why I would encourage you to eat them:
As one of the best plant-based sources of essential omega-3 fats, I recommend that everybody tries to add flax to their daily diet. It can really help to make your complexion look and feel smoother and more supple. The ratio of essential fatty acids in flaxseed is ideal for the human body, helping to support optimal health and prevent inflammation, which can lead to painful PMS, damaged and dry skin and a whole host of other inflammatory conditions.
Flaxseeds are also a fantastic source of both soluble and insoluble fibre, which helps to stabilise your blood sugar levels, keep you feeling full for longer and support healthy bowel function. But this type of fibre is also excellent for women because it helps to sweep used-up hormones, and especially oestrogen, from the intestines and prevent it from being reabsorbed by the body. Balanced hormones are important for feeling at your best, mentally, emotionally and physically.
Flaxseeds are available in a variety of forms, including milled and as an oil. I recommend eating flaxseeds whole rather than just the oil, and you will benefit from all of that fibre too. Flaxseeds are best ground to avail of the fatty acids in them, and there are quite a number of brands available offering ground flaxseed. But the very best way to eat them is to grind them yourself in a pestle and mortar and enjoy them sprinkled over smoothies, porridge or salads. Just two tablespoons per day is all that’s needed, and ground flax is best stored in the fridge for freshness.
I try to incorporate flaxseeds to lots of my recipes, including these Cinnamon Swirl Pancakes 🙂
Broccoli is part of the Brassica family, which also includes bok choy, kale, cabbage, cauliflower and brussels sprouts amongst others. They’re all rich in fibre and water to keep you feeling full and less likely to overeat, plus they have an abundance of essential vitamins, minerals and disease-fighting antioxidant compounds.
But another important reason to consume broccoli is for its ability to benefit oestrogen metabolism. This is done through indole-3-carbinol (I3C), a compound naturally containing DIM, which supports the balance of oestrogen in your body. And balanced oestrogen helps to balance your weight and mentrual cycle. Like many women, I’ve struggled over the years with painful PMS, which has been severe enough at times to disrupt normal life. So anything that that help is much appreciated!
Try my broccoli vibrance bowl with toasted hazelnut crumble for a tasty way to incorporate it into your diet 🙂