I often find myself and the women I work with getting caught up in numbers. Grams of protein, fat and carbs are always questions on the mind. While it is true that vibrant health and Happy Hormones come from eating a balanced diet including these three macronutrients, we can’t forget about the micronutrients.
Those of course are your vitamins and minerals. So many of us are deficient because we don’t eat enough produce. Having a plant-based diet doesn’t mean you need to be vegan. It simply means making plants (aka fruits and veggies) the main staple of your diet.
When it comes to choosing the best get-my-glow-on veggies, the more colourful the better. This is part of the reason why I LOVE this kale salad. It’s super easy to make, keeps in the fridge, it’s full of glow-getting nutrients and it tastes pretty bomb.
Here’s some more reasons to love this easy kale salad:
Kale is FULL of insulin-balancing fibre, and we know how important balancing insulin is for healthy weight and Happy Hormones. Kale is also a great source of many mood-balancing B vitamins like B6, B3 and Folate (B9). We owe the dark rich colour of kale to the iron and magnesium it contains. This is helpful to build the blood is you have low iron or super heavy periods. Magnesium is known to help reduce anxiety, balance blood sugar and reducing muscle pain and cramping (see ya later, cramps!)
Beets are another blood-building powerhouse as they have a good amount of iron and vitamin c, which assists iron absorption. They are also packed with insulin-balancing fibre, which will reduce those “hangry” feelings between meals. Beets are also a good source of mood-balancing tryptophan and magnesium.
Carrots are delicious orange jewels that are a good part to any hormone-balancing diet. Carrots contain a fibre which helps to bind and excrete estrogens in the body, thus being useful for estrogen dominance. Carrots are also carotenoid heavy-hitters, meaning they will reduce free radical and oxidation while supporting healthy vision and reducing inflammation- a major contributor to hormonal imbalances like PCOS and Endometriosis.
Pumpkin seeds are one of my favourite seeds to recommend for women with hormonal imbalances. They can be used in seed cycling to balance irregular or bothersome periods. Pumpkin seeds are full of zinc, which enhances immunity, contributes to glowing skin, help produce healthy fertile eggs and maintenance of hormone levels. There’s also quite a lot of Magnesium in these little seeds- about 185mg per 1/4 cup!
- 1 bunch kale, washed and chopped
- 1-2 medium carrots, grated
- 1 small beet, grated
- 1/4 cup raw pumpkin seeds (pepitas)
- 1/2 tbsp olive oil
- salt and pepper to taste
- juice of one lemon
- 1 small garlic clove, minced
- 1-2 tbsp olive oil
- salt and pepper to taste
- Make the salad. Put chopped kale in a bowl with 1/2 tbsp olive oil and some salt. Vigorously massage the kale leaves (really crunch them!!). Leave the kale to soften for 20-30 minutes.
- Make the dressing. Combine all dressing ingredients in a contained, put on the lid and shake until combined.
- Pour dressing over kale, and mix in other veggies and seeds. Serve.
- This salad can be kept (with dressing on!) for up to 3 days in the fridge. It doesn't go soggy and that's awesome.