Erin Stanczyk | eat.move.rest.

carbs

Antioxidant Açaí Bowl: A Superfood Breakfast of Champions

Eat, Food + Nutrition, RecipesErin Stanczyk2 Comments

Açaí You, Baby!

Every time the hubby and I go on vacation somewhere, the first thing we do is seek out the nearest juice and smoothie bar. As much as I hate to leave my Vitamix behind, waking up every morning to a fresh, cold-pressed green juice and an Açaí Bowl more than satisfies--plus, it's nice to get a break from having to do it myself!

These super-tasty superfood bowls have taken smoothie shops and juiceries by storm, and for good reason--açaí (pronounced ah-sigh-ee) is chock full of vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and phytonutrients. All that being said, you can bring vacation right to your kitchen with just a few simple ingredients!

Erin Stanczyk | Lifestyle Design | eat.move.rest. | SUPERFOOD ANTIOXIDANT AÇAÍ BOWL
Erin Stanczyk | Lifestyle Design | eat.move.rest. | SUPERFOOD ANTIOXIDANT AÇAÍ BOWL

The Basics

  • source + location

    • pronounced ah-sigh-ee, this superfruit comes from the dark purple berries of a tropical palm tree

    • indigenous to Central and South America; commonly harvested from the Amazonian rainforests of Brazil

  • contents + benefits

    • one of the most nutrient-dense foods on the planet; contains antioxidants, omega-3 fatty acids, amino acids, protein, fiber, and several micronutrients including resveratrol, calcium, magnesium, and iron

    • antioxidants improve overall health and attack disease-causing free radicals in the body, great for energy and focus, low-glycemic, low sugar and can help fight off weight gain and combat cravings, protein and fiber help to keep fuller longer

  • amount + uses

    • 1 tbsp powder or 1-2 frozen packs

    • mixed in with smoothies or "nice cream," this makes an antioxidant-packed tropical treat; beverages, and desserts

  • taste + fun facts

    • creamy and tart berry flavor with chocolate undertones

    • harvest and sales of the crop generates income for native communities and is a great alternative to deforestation and habitat destruction

For more info on Superfoods, check out:

 My Top 10 Superfoods

Erin Stanczyk | Lifestyle Design | eat.move.rest. | SUPERFOOD ANTIOXIDANT AÇAÍ BOWL
Erin Stanczyk | Lifestyle Design | eat.move.rest. | SUPERFOOD ANTIOXIDANT AÇAÍ BOWL

ORAC Value

Free radicals are caused by our exposure to environmental toxins and pollutants, like cigarette smoke, alcohol consumption, excessive sun exposure, smog, chemicals in household cleaners and personal care products--even stress can cause inflammation and oxidation to occur in the body. When we consume a diet rich in nutrient-dense foods like fruits and vegetables, we are getting a healthy dose of antioxidants, which neutralize free radicals. This process helps to fight off illness and disease, and combats premature aging. The ORAC (Oxygen Radical Absorbance Capacity) of a substance measures its antioxidant level, and subsequent free radical-fighting ability.

Açaí most definitely earns its place as a superfood, due to its super high ORAC score:

  • Banana: 795

  • Spinach: 1,687

  • Red Delicious Apple: 4,275

  • Wild Blueberries: 9,621

  • Açaí Berry: 102,700

Erin Stanczyk | Lifestyle Design | eat.move.rest. | SUPERFOOD ANTIOXIDANT AÇAÍ BOWL
Erin Stanczyk | Lifestyle Design | eat.move.rest. | SUPERFOOD ANTIOXIDANT AÇAÍ BOWL

Amp Up

Amp up your antioxidants with an Açaí Bowl and reap all of the health benefits that come along with it! No need break the bank at the local juicery to indulge in this sweet treat when you can make it right at home!

Erin Stanczyk | Lifestyle Design | eat.move.rest. | SUPERFOOD ANTIOXIDANT AÇAÍ BOWL
Erin Stanczyk | Lifestyle Design | eat.move.rest. | SUPERFOOD ANTIOXIDANT AÇAÍ BOWL
Erin Stanczyk | Lifestyle Design | eat.move.rest. | SUPERFOOD ANTIOXIDANT AÇAÍ BOWL

Pineapple Banner

Antioxidant Açaí Bowl

Açaí bowls are all the rage! Most juice bars and smoothie shops come fully equipped with an assortment of variations of these delectable superfood smoothie bowls. It's easier than ever to treat yourself anytime at home, with a few simple ingredients! Açaí is extremely high in anti-aging phytonutrients and disease-fighting antioxidants and will give you that extra oomph to get you through your day without the need for refined sugar and stimulants! Pure, simple, whole, and delicious!

raw vegan, gluten-free, refined-sugar-free, antioxidant-packed!

serves: 2 // time: 10 min

Erin Stanczyk | Lifestyle Design | eat.move.rest. | SUPERFOOD ANTIOXIDANT AÇAÍ BOWL

ingredients:

  • 2 cups frozen, ripe, freckled bananas

  • 1 cup frozen strawberries

  • 1 cup frozen blueberries

  • 1 cup frozen raspberries

  • 2 frozen, unsweetened açaí packs

  • 1 cup coconut water, almond milk, or water

  • 1 scoop raw vegan, vanilla SunWarrior protein powder (optional)

    • use discount code EatMoveRest for 20% off your purchase

Erin Stanczyk | Lifestyle Design | eat.move.rest. | SUPERFOOD ANTIOXIDANT AÇAÍ BOWL

method:

  1. Place all frozen ingredients into high-speed blender and top with liquid of choice.

  2. Blend until smooth and creamy.

  3. Pour into 2 bowls and top with fruit and other whole-food ingredients--some of my favorites are bananas, mangos, kiwis, strawberries, raspberries, blueberries, dried mulberries, and coconut flakes! Enjoy!

 

notes:

  • for an extra indulgent boost, try topping with other flavorful and nutritious ingredients like almond butter, cacao nibs, cinnamon, granola, hemp, chia, and ground flax

  • If using fresh young coconut water, check out the CocoJack to easily crack open your coconut! Use discount code EATMOVEREST for 10% off your purchase!

*nutrition:

  • macronutrients: 337 calories per serving // 68.9g carbs // 5.4g protein // 7g fat

  • micronutrients: 41% vitamin A // 123% vitamin C // 75% fiber // 19% folate // 15% iron // 12% calcium

*from cronometer.com

Pineapple Banner

Erin Stanczyk | Lifestyle Design | eat.move.rest. | SUPERFOOD ANTIOXIDANT AÇAÍ BOWL
Erin Stanczyk | Lifestyle Design | eat.move.rest. | SUPERFOOD ANTIOXIDANT AÇAÍ BOWL
Erin Stanczyk | Lifestyle Design | eat.move.rest. | SUPERFOOD ANTIOXIDANT AÇAÍ BOWL

As Seen On YouTube

Join me in the kitchen to watch me whip up an Antioxidant Açaí BowlBe sure to Subscribe to the EatMoveRest channel, hit the bell symbol to turn on Notifications to stay up-to-date on new videos, Like the video by giving it a thumbs up, show some love and leave us a Comment, and Share with family and friends!


Superfood, Super You!

Satisfy your sweet tooth while doing your body good with an antioxidant-rich Açaí Bowl--perfect for breakfast or lunch, pre- or post-workout!

Show some love! Be sure to take a snapshot of your smoothie bowl creation and tag me on Instagram by using the hashtag #EatMoveRest!

Designed For Your Lifestyle,

Erin

Erin Stanczyk

Plant-Based, Plant-Powered, Plant-Strong: Where Do You Get Your Protein?

Food + Nutrition, EatErin Stanczyk2 Comments

The Simple Answer: I get my protein from everything I eat!

Erin Stanczyk | Lifestyle Design | eat.move.rest. | PLANT-BASED, PLANT-POWERED, PLANT-STRONG: WHERE DO YOU GET YOUR PROTEIN?

The Myth: Vegans & Vegetarians Don't Get Enough Protein

The most common misconception about going plant-based and eliminating animal products--namely meat, dairy, and eggs--is that it will cause you to shrivel up and blow away. It's no wonder we're misled, with the vast amount of misinformation that's out there and the whirlwind of confusion that follows. When we're told, this is good for you, eat this, do that, from one source, and told to steer clear of that exact item from another source, it can leave us feeling frustrated and overwhelmed. Then, decision fatigue sets in, at which point we decide it's a heck of a lot easier to just turn a blind eye and head to the drive-thru, instead of trying to navigate the complex world of diet and nutrition. 

But if I don't eat meat, won't my bones break? Won't my muscles deteriorate? Won't I DIE?!

Let me ask you, how much protein do you think you need? Most of us don't even know how much protein our bodies actually require in order to thrive!

The Truth: Vegans & Vegetarians Get Plenty Of Protein

...in fact, vegans and vegetarians get just as much protein as their meat-eating counterparts!

  • The average recommended daily intake of protein is 42 grams.

  • Non-vegetarians consume almost 80 grams of protein per day.

  • Vegetarians and vegans average almost 70% more daily protein intake than the recommended amount, which equates to over 70 grams.

  • Less than 3% of the American population actually has a protein deficiency, and this is typically only found in cases of extreme caloric restriction--as in those who have just undergone gastric bypass surgery or are experiencing anorexia nervosa.

  • Plant foods, while lower in calories, are much more nutrient dense--more vitamins, minerals, phytonutrients, antioxidants, and fiber, than animal products.

ForksOverKnives.com

Erin Stanczyk | Lifestyle Design | eat.move.rest. | PLANT-BASED, PLANT-POWERED, PLANT-STRONG: WHERE DO YOU GET YOUR PROTEIN?
Pineapple Banner

Building The Basics

Peanut Butter

The Whole Package: Macronutrients

All whole foods are composed of 3 macronutrients: carbohydrates, fats, and proteins, in differing amounts--that means, when you eat a banana, you are getting carbohydrates, fats, and proteins! We tend to get caught up teasing apart the different components of the foods that we eat, and we lose sight of the bigger picture--a whole food is the sum of it's parts--we need to be looking at the whole package! For example, if you're only looking at protein, peanut butter might be a great option--but only 13% of the calories are actually from protein, while 72%  are from fat--and too much fat can cause our bodies to perform at a less than optimal level. Visit Cronometer.com

 

Building Blocks: Amino Acids

Protein helps our bodies to buildmaintain, and repair muscles and other tissues in the body. Amino acids are the building blocks of protein, some of which are synthesized in the body, while others must be obtained through diet. There are a total of 20 amino acids, of which 9 are considered "essential," because they cannot be made by the cells in the body and must be consumed. Plants provide all essential amino acids, and thanks to research, we now know that we do not need to "combine" certain foods to create a "complete protein" at each meal.

Doing The Math: Amount In Grams

The Recommended Dietary Allowance (RDA) for protein is 0.8g/kg of body weight, or 0.36g/lb, which means that only 8-10% of your daily calories need to come from protein--and some nutrition experts would argue that we need even less. Therefore, we must consume other macronutrients to obtain an adequate amount of calories. Our bodies function optimally when we get a high amount of carbohydrates (from unrefined, whole food sources), low amount of fat, and adequate amount of protein.

In order to compute the amount of protein you need, simply take your weight (in lbs) x 0.36 to get the recommended protein in grams. More protein is required for highly active individuals, as well as those who are pregnant or breastfeeding, but consuming more calories in general, will fulfill their needs.

Most people think that the RDA is a minimum requirement, when in fact this value actually includes a large margin of safety. The majority of Americans (including vegans and vegetarians) are consuming more than double the required amount.

Pineapple Banner
Erin Stanczyk | Lifestyle Design | eat.move.rest. | PLANT-BASED, PLANT-POWERED, PLANT-STRONG: WHERE DO YOU GET YOUR PROTEIN?

The "F" Word

No one who is consuming enough calories in general, need worry about suffering from a protein deficiency. The truth is that most Americans are actually suffering from a fiber deficiency! Meat, dairy, and eggs contain zero fiber.

97% of Americans are getting enough protein, while only 3% are getting enough fiber. -NutritionFacts.org

The Standard American Diet is wrought with processed, packaged, chemically enhanced foods that contain little to no fiber and are lacking in nutritional value. Meat itself contains no fiber. A deficiency in fiber has been linked to an increase in the very same diseases that a diet high in animal products promotes--double whammy! 

A lack of dietary fiber has been associated with a higher risk of diabetes, cardiovascular disease, obesity, and various cancers, as well as higher cholesterol, blood pressure, and blood sugar. -ForksOverKnives.com

Bottom line: More plant fiber, Less animal protein!

More ≠ Better

More is not always better. Excessive protein intake has been linked to kidney disease, cancer, and osteoporosis. We should strive, therefore, to obtain an adequate amount of protein, and not an excess.

Some will say that meat is a better quality protein because it is closer to our body's makeup, but faster synthesis is not necessarily better, either. It can also mean faster cancer cell growth, earlier menarche, and a laundry list of other diseases. Meat, eggs, dairy, and animal products also contain high amounts of saturated fat and cholesterol, which are major contributors to heart disease. 

Intake of animal products and high amounts of animal protein (casein in-specific) has been linked to obesity, diabetes, high cholesterol, heart disease, calcium bone loss, rheumatoid arthritis, autoimmune disease, and Alzheimer's.


Food For Thought

While plant foods are lower in calories, they are higher in nearly all types of vitamins, minerals, and other health-promoting nutrients--that equates to more bang for your bite!

Erin Stanczyk | Lifestyle Design | eat.move.rest. | PLANT-BASED, PLANT-POWERED, PLANT-STRONG: WHERE DO YOU GET YOUR PROTEIN?
  • The only way you will even come close to being protein deficient is if you're simply starving yourself--so enjoy a variety of colorful, whole, plant foods in abundance, and forget the rest!

  • Some of the largest species on planet Earth thrive on an entirely herbivorous diet--elephants, rhinoceros, gorillas, and hippopotamus--even the very animals that we eat, cows, consume a completely plant-based diet. Why not cut out the middle-man (or middle-moo) and go straight to the source?!

  • We are the only species that finds it necessary to drink another species' milk. There is nothing better that you can do for your infant than to breastfeed and provide them with all essential nutrients needed to thrive. However, cow's milk is designed to do the same for a calf, which requires an astronomically high amount of hormones, calories, and nutrients in order to grow at a much faster rate than a human infant. Why risk giving your child too much of what he/she doesn't need?!

Plant-Powered Protein Sources:

  • Whole Grains: brown rice, quinoa, amaranth

  • Beans + Legumes: navy, kidney, cannellini, aduki, chickpeas, lentils, peas, edamame

  • Nuts + Seeds: almonds, walnuts, cashews, flax, chia, hemp, sesame, pumpkin, sunflower

  • Leafy Greens + Veggies: kale, spinach, chard, collards, broccoli, brussels sprouts

  • Soy (always buy organic/non-GMO): tofu, tempeh, natto

  • Supplements: plant-based protein powder, spirulina

Lean Green Protein Smoothie Ingredients

No Whey! Opt for a plant-based protein powder like my personal favorite: SunWarrior! Use code EatMoveRest at checkout for 20% off your purchase!

Plant-Powered Fiber Sources:

  • All fruits, veggies, whole grains, beans, legumes, nuts, and seeds! It's that easy!

  • Animal foods contain no fiber, while plant foods contain plenty of both protein AND fiber! Win-win!

Related Research & Evidence-Based Content:

Plant-Strong Athletes:


My Go-To Lean Green Protein Smoothie Recipe

As Seen On The EatMoveRest Blog + YouTube Channel:


Myth Busters To Be Continued...

I don't always nerd-out with my blog posts, but I want to begin dispelling some of the common myths and misconceptions surrounding a whole foods plant-based diet, so I hope you've enjoyed this read! If you're interested in the answers to some more of the common questions that I get, visit the EatMoveRest FAQ page! 

If you have any specific questions you'd like me to address, shoot me a message through my Contact page. Until next time, Eat, Move, & Rest your best!

Designed For Your Lifestyle,

Erin

Erin Stanczyk