Plant Protein Alternatives

Tofu…tempeh…seitan, whats the deal with them? Tofu is made from condensed soy milk mixed with nigari, and pressed into tight blocks. It is a good source of protein as it contains all 9 essential amino acids. It?s great for marinating as it absorbs flavour easily. Tempeh is made from fermented whole soy beans and contains more protein (20g per 100g) and dietary fiber than tofu. Like most fermented foods it is rich in probiotics. The fermentation process increases digestibility and nutrient absorbtion. And finally Seitan, which is not related to soy in any way is actually made from wheat gluten. If you are gluten intolerant/celiac, stay away. However, if you are not, Seitan is high in protein, rich in selenium and iron and low in carbs and fat, so could be a good option for those trying to lose weight.

Nutritional Yeast, Nutch, Nootch...nomnom!

Nutritional yeast is a great addition to any diet, omnivore or herbivore. It is almost concentrated in its fibre content, which is the fuel that keeps our digestive system ticking along. 2 tablespoons contains 5g of carbs, of which 4g is fibre! It is a great source of B vitamins, including the elusive vitamin B12 making it a great energy source, and a good addition to any breakfast or pre-workout smoothie. It is a wonderful source of plant protein as it contains all 9 essential amino acids with every 8g per 16g serving (2 tbsp) being protein, that’s 50%! Nutritional yeast has a nutty/cheesy flavour, and is great for making dairy free cheese or sauces. It even makes a nice topping for popcorn. We now stock nutritional yeast with B12, packaging free. So take a couple of grams home and try it out.

Valerian Root

The benefits of valerian root are plentiful. Most commonly used in relation to initiating sleep, helping to reduce the time it takes to fall asleep and improve quality of sleep. It is also useful in fighting general anxiety, by increasing GABA levels. Low GABA levels are linked to acute and chronic stress and poor sleep. Valerian root is also a good option for the relief of menstrual cramps. It is antispasmodic which means it is a natural muscle relaxer and aiding in relief of muscle cramps. Make your own valerian root tea, by seeping a teaspoon in hot water for 5 minutes, or take a valerian root based tincture such as A.Vogels Dormeasan. Should not be taken if on other medication to treat similar symptoms.

The Age of Sage

Since moving into our new home on the North Circular Road at the end of 2018 we have smudged the place on a fairly regular basis, initially on the recommendation of one of our iontach customers. The practice of smudging or burning white sage, is an ancient ritual, traditional among Native Americans. The ritual is said to purify the air and space it occupies, as white sage is both antimicrobial and antibacterial. This claim is backed by a study published in the Journal of The Ethnopharmacology, that showed a 94% reduction in aerial bacteria was found after burning sage for 60 minutes, this may be why people with asthma can benefit from regular smudging! White sage is also a natural mood enhancer, as it is rich in compounds that activate certain mood elevating receptors in the brain, it is also traditionally used to treat aniexty and depression. So if you are ever wondering why we’re always so chirpy in our little haven, a small part of it is down to this wonderful plant. Thanks