February is here, and with it, love is in the air! With the winter season coming to an end February is the month when we start to see more foods coming around. One of the areas we see this is seasonal fruits. Even with the new additions to our variety in options February foods keep the common theme of nutrient-dense foods that we have come to know and love during the winter months. While the fruits that are available in the other months of the winter season are still readily available we start to see more fruits that bring spring to mind.
When it comes to eating seasonally for your health this is another month packed with power players. All the fruits highlighted this month are high in fiber and help support our immune systems. During the cooler months of the year, we tend to see an increase in seasonal illnesses. This is largely due to the temperature change and its effects on our lungs. Luckily for us, mother nature has us covered. The following is a list of my top five favorite fruits available in February.
Apples are not only great at getting you up and on your way they are perfect to aid in weight loss and management. Apples are high in fiber which aids in digestion and helps keep you feeling full longer. The fiber in apples also helps lower the risk for heart disease and aids in maintaining healthy blood sugar levels. Apples are also low in calories and high in water content which helps the body naturally detox and thus, removes excess weight that can be stored toxins. When our bodies come into contact with something they either do not recognize or consider an enemy they encase it in fat as a form of protection. During detoxing our bodies force out these fat-encased toxins which result in a lower number on the scale.
Apples are great for your brain activity. They contain high levels of boron, which stimulates electrical activity of the brain and increases mental alertness. Apples also help to produce Dopamine in the body which helps to improve: memory, mood (feelings of joy or bliss), motivation, and focus. Apples may not be rich in calcium, but their high levels of boron make it a great food to prevent osteoporosis and strengthen bones. A 2006 study published in the journal Experimental Biology and Medicine found that quercetin (one of the antioxidants found abundantly in apples) was one of two compounds that helped to reduce cellular death that is caused by oxidation and inflammation of neurons. Once again, highlights what makes apples so desirable in daily nutrition.
Persimmons are rich in betulinic acid which has anti-tumor compounds. This acid has the power to cause tumor cell apoptosis. Essentially the tumor cells die before they have a chance to develop. If you have a tumor already, the betlulinic acid helps prevent the tumor from growing larger or metastasizing. Because persimmons are so rich in antioxidants, they have the power to neutralize disease-causing free radicals. Persimmons are rich in nutrients like potassium that has been shown to reduce blood pressure. Once the blood pressure is reduced, there is significantly less strain on the cardiovascular system. High blood pressure is associated with an increased risk for heart disease. Known to help regulate blood sugar levels, persimmons are a portion of food that people who have diabetes should consider adding to their diet. Persimmons are rich in fiber, so they can leave you feeling fuller for a longer period.
While we credit apple as the miracle fruit, kiwi is loaded with essential vitamins and minerals and works in many ways to give you a nutritional boost. If you thought that lemons and oranges were the highest sources of Vitamin C, then think again! According to the nutritional break-up of kiwi fruit, 100 grams contain 154 percent of Vitamin C, which is almost twice that of lemons and oranges. Vitamin C acts as a powerful antioxidant, eliminating free radicals that could cause inflammation or cancer. It also helps in boosting the immunity of the body against harmful pathogens. It is said that having two kiwi fruits one hour before bedtime can help immensely in inducing sleep.
This exotic fruit is loaded with dietary fiber, which helps in the prevention of numerous diseases. It also facilities weight loss and is often recommended to diabetics. Kiwi fruit contains an enzyme known as actinidain which is known for its protein dissolving properties, similar to that of papain in papaya. This is the reason why it is commonly used as a meat tenderizer. Moreover, it helps in the digestion of proteins in the body and is also known to help patients suffering from irritable bowel syndrome.
It is a good source of folate, which is said to be beneficial for pregnant women because it helps in the development of the fetus, making it healthy. Kiwi fruit is loaded with vitamins and minerals such as Vitamins A, B6, B12, E, potassium, calcium, iron, and magnesium. These contribute collectively to the proper functioning of the body such as blood circulation through the vessels, fighting stress, iron absorption for healthy bones and teeth, good vision, and more!
Dates are a good source of energy, fiber, sugar, and various vitamins and minerals. Essential minerals such as calcium, iron, phosphorus, sodium, potassium, magnesium, sulfur, and zinc can be found in them. Apart from the above-mentioned nutrients, they may also contain important vitamins such as thiamin, riboflavin, niacin, vitamin B6, folate, vitamin A, and vitamin K. The insoluble fiber found in dates may potentially promote healthy digestion by bulking up the stool and may also aid in relieving the symptoms of constipation.
Dates can be a good source of many nutrients, including iron. A deficiency of iron can contribute to anemia, a condition characterized by fatigue, dizziness, brittle nails, and shortness of breath. In 2006, an animal study revealed the effects of date palm pollen and its oil on sexual functioning, reporting that the high levels of estradiol and flavonoid components in dates are helping increase sperm count and motility. Therefore, if you are looking for an easy way to boost your libido and sexual function, you may consider consuming organic dates, thanks to their aphrodisiac-like properties.
The health benefits of lemon might be attributed to its vitamin C content. It can help improve skin health, promote weight loss, and may act as a breath freshener. Lemons may also help with dental problems, throat infections, and high blood pressure. These citrus fruits can also be used in skin and hair care. Lemon may also help to strengthen your immune system. Lemon juice might help you manage your blood pressure with long-term use. Drinking warm water with lemon and honey in the morning is said to aid your weight loss efforts. While that might or might not work for you, a research study performed on mice confirmed that polyphenols present in it can suppress body weight gain and body fat accumulation.
Lemon can be used in cleaning teeth. While most remedies will advocate using lemon and baking soda, try and avoid it as it may lead to dental erosion. The safest way is to choose a toothpaste containing this fruit as one of the ingredients. If you are keen to use lemon or its juice for oral care, it is best to consult with a medical expert before trying out anything new. Lemon juice, being a natural antiseptic medicine, may also be able to cure problems related to the skin. The juice contains vitamin C, and therefore, it can be applied to reduce the pain of sunburns and bee stings as well. It is also good for acne and eczema. Lemon juice may assist in relieving respiratory problems and breathing problems, such as its ability to soothe a person suffering from asthma.
Gluten-Free, Vegan, Serves 30
- 1/2 cup Vegan Butter
- 3/4 cup Coconut Sugar
- 1 cup Pureed Persimmons
- 1/4 cup Brown Sugar
- 1 cup Coconut Flour
- 1/2 tsp Baking Soda
- 1 cup Almond Flour
- 1/2 tsp Sea Salt
- 1/4 cup Vegan Greek Yogurt
- 1/8 tsp Allspice
- 1/4 tsp Nutmeg
- 1/3 Cup Gluten-Free Oats
- 1/4 tsp Ginger
- 1/2 cup Dried Cranberries
- 1/4 cup Dark Chocolate Vegan Chips
- 1/2 cup Pecans Chopped
Preheat the oven o 325 degrees F. Cream together the sugar and butter. Add in the yogurt and mix until combined. Once combined, blend in the puree and combine. In another bowl, sift together all dry ingredients and mix well. Once combined, slowly add dry ingredients into the wet mixture while adding in. Add nuts, oats, cranberries, and chips gently. Pretreat cooking sheets with a non-stick preventative of choice. Portion out 1 1/4 Tbsp of dough onto the sheet 2 inches apart. Bake the cookies one tray at a time until golden brown around the edges. It should take about 14-16 minutes depending on your oven. Allow to cool on sheet for 5 minutes and transfer to a cooling rack to cool completely.
Gluten-Free, Vegan, Serves 4
- 8 Kiwis, peeled
- 4 Tbsp Maple Syrup
- 1 Tbsp Lemon Juice
- 4 Tbsp Full Fat Coconut milk
Cube peeled kiwi and lay flat onto a baking sheet and let freeze. Once frozen combine all ingredients into a blender and blend until smooth. Enjoy immediately or pour into an icecube tray and refreeze. When ready to use pop into a blender and serve.
Strawberry Hibiscus Cocktail
Gluten-Free, Vegan, Serves 2
- 1 Tbsp Hibiscus flowers Dried
- 1/2 Lime juiced
- 4 Strawberries
- 2 tsp Orange zest
- 1 Coconut Lime Bia
Mull strawberries and combine all ingredients into a shaker. Shake vigorously for 1 minute and pour over ice.
Get Started Today
Keeping your body free of toxins and free radicals is necessary to maintain a healthy life and a healthy mind. There are tons of foods you can add to your regular diet to help your body with its critical detoxifying processes. If you are looking for a safe and all-natural way to detox your body at home be sure to check out my Balancing Abundance Program. Because detoxing is so important and realistically everyone should be doing it on at least a seasonal basis I have taken the time to put together a program to help you do just that. Here’s the thing, I know working with me one-on-one can seem difficult to get into (due to limited space) and I wanted to be able to give everyone an additional solution that has no limits. You deserve to be happy, healthy, and successful at everything you do so here are some recipes to help set you up for success!
Need A Hand?
A happy and healthy life is closer than you may think. We all have to deal with our health daily, and when we don’t feel our best, it shows. If you are tired of just making it through your day, you NEED to start investing in your health today! You are not alone on this journey. If you ever need any help, I am always here to do just that. Even if it is something as small as acting as a sounding board, do you have any questions or concerns I can help you with? Feel free to contact me directly at [email protected], or you can even book a one-on-one call with me. Be sure to subscribe to gain access to tons of free goodies and check back daily for more great recipes and information!