The Health Makeover :: 6 Foods You Should Add to Your Diet for Weight Loss


Did you know: Quinoa is not a grain but actually the seed of a plant related to chard and spinach.
Quinoa is a complete protein, meaning it is high in protein and contains all nine essential amino acids. It has a healthy about of lysine which suppose tissue repair and growth. For those who suffer from migraines, quinoa is a good source of magnesium and riboflavin, which supports blood vessels in relaxing. Magnesium is also helpful for cardiovascular health and is an excellent source of fiber. Studies suggest that consistent intakes of quinoa may lower risks of type 2 diabetes and asthma.

My favorite way to prepare quinoa is 2-1 ratio (2 cups of water with 1 cup of quinoa, for fluffier quinoa, do a ratio of 3-1) with 1 tb of olive oil and 1 tsp sea salt. It takes 20-25 minutes to be done over medium heat.

Chia Seeds

Chia seeds are black. tiny seeds that pack a powerful, nutritional punch. They resemble poppy seeds aesthetically, but function in a completely different way. One ounce of chia seeds (which is about 2 tablespoons) provides just as much calcium as a cup of milk! Some other aspects of chia:
* They contain more than 50% of omega- 3 and 6 fatty acids.
* Excellent source of protein (rich in B1 and B3)
* Considerable and necessary amounts Vitamin E, magnesium, phosphorus, fiber, iron, zinc

When combined with a liquid, Chia Seeds become gelatinous so they can be used in place of flax seed in vegan baking recipes (and they don’t need to be ground). The simplest way of incorporating chia seeds is adding them to foods you already consume: your morning smoothie, oatmeal, coconut milk yogurt, etc or simply adding it to a cup of water, letting it sit for 5 minutes, and drinking it! I have even topped salads with chia seeds for a little crunch or added it to trail mixes. They help you feel fuller and assist in hydration.

From: Got Almond Milk? Ways to get your plant-based calcium fix

Hemp Seeds

“Hemp is packed full of protein. Hemp contains all 10 essential amino acids and is vegan friendly! It’s also easy to digest as hemp easily assimilates into your body.

Hemp is a rich and balanced source of Omega-3 and Omega-6 including the rare form of GLA (Gamma Linolenic Acid). GLA has been shown to help maintain heart health, healthy cholesterol and blood pressure levels and aid in hormonal balance. The essential fatty acids (EFAs) in hemp are both short and long chain making for a broader spectrum and working together to ensure your body has an effective metabolism. According the World Health Organization the ideal ratio of Omega-6 to Omega-3 is 4:1. Hemp has a ratio of 3.75:1.

Stacked With Other Nutrients including:

Chlorophyll and Vitamin E.
Important B vitamins.
Folic acid (important for women who are trying or may become pregnant)
Phosphorus, potassium, magnesium and calcium, which are involved in energy metabolism, protein and bone synthesis.*

*2009 study done by Kelly Fitzpatrick”1


Oleic acid, a monounsaturated fat, are in avocados and have been shown to lower cholesterol and provide protection against oral and breast cancer. Adding Avocados to a dish like a salad or a raw vegetable medley will increase your body’s ability to absorb carotenoids from other vegetables. Most carotenoids have antioxidant activity, boost your immune system, and supports unwanted inflammation. Avocados promote heart health, support regulating your blood sugar, and has anti-cancer properties.

Mono-unsaturated fatty acids are noted as a healthy form of fat that targets belly fat. MUFAs are found in avocados, in both Hass and Florida varieties.

Green Tea

Green tea has many antioxidants, catechins, are being studied as potential preventatives of cancer, heart disease, and damaging DNA. Smaller amounts are found in dark chocolate, red wine, berries, and grapes. Because green tea is minimally processed, the concentration of catechins are higher.

Various studies both in Netherlands and Japan show improvements in weight and heart health, especially in women, with green tea consumption. “Daily consumption of tea containing 690 mg catechins for 12 wk reduced body fat, which suggests that the ingestion of catechins might be useful in the prevention and improvement of lifestyle-related diseases, mainly obesity.”2


Turmeric is a plant in the ginger family derived from South and Southeast Asia. Most curries contain turmeric as a base ingredient. Curcumin is found in turmeric and some studies suggest it may support in regulating metabolism, weight loss, and decreasing fat content. Turmeric is also great for those who experience inflammation and various forms of arthritis.

You can add turmeric to any meal (or even make a turmeric ginger tea) as the flavor isn’t overwhelming. Make yellow quinoa by adding turmeric.

1. Health Care Products Research Laboratories Study – No.1, Kao Corporation, Tokyo.
2. The below nutrient information is courtesy of Manitoba Harvest


YGL staff