Experts and Other Fatheads
According to most all-knowing, all-seeing nutritionists and dieticians, I should be getting between 20 and 80 grams of protein per day instead of the 200 grams I typically consume.
Really, that's what they say: 20 to 80 grams a day, sometimes accompanied by the stern warning that more than 20 grams a day could be fatal. I'm not kidding, this is the level of idiocy that's out there among some "experts."
Actual photo of award-winning dieticians. What's wrong with this picture? Anyone?
So, let's think about something for a minute. These nutrition experts greatly underestimate the protein needs of healthy, weight-trained people, right? And their knowledge of protein science is at least a decade behind the times. So what do they recommend when it comes to vegetables and fruits?
Well, the US government's "experts" say I should be eating 3.5 cups of vegetables per day and 2.5 cups of fruit. That's actually quite a lot of vegetables and fruits, and honestly, I don't always get that much. In fact, until a few years ago, I probably didn't eat that many fruits and vegetables in a week.
Now, if the experts are underestimating protein needs, can we also assume that they're underestimating the amount of vegetables and fruits we should be getting? After all, we don't want to eat just enough to stay alive, we want to eat enough to thrive, to excel, to go beyond merely adequate.
The truth is, certain veggies, fruits, berries, and teas can have enormous, pharmaceutical-like benefits. Get enough and you can guarantee a longer, healthier life. But as you may have guessed, it takes a lot more than 3.5 cups of vegetables a day to reap these benefits. Yep, the "experts" have once again underestimated.
Problem is, much like the healthy fats found in fish, it's practically impossible to consume that many fruits and veggies in one day. Even if you had a serving of veggies with every meal for six meals a day, you'd only be just scratching the surface of their potential life-extending benefits.
In the case of omega-3s and fish, we know we need to supplement to get enough of the good stuff, because none of us can (or should, given today's toxic mercury levels) consume that much marine life. So what do we do in the case of vegetables, fruits, berries, and teas? Simple: we supplement.
The Super Supplement
Until recently, the only choices were vitamins and "greens" powders, both woefully behind the times, some even containing common allergens and Testosterone-sapping ingredients.
Luckily, Biotest introduced Superfood and saved us from stale vitamin pills and grass-filled, gag-inducing greens products.
A quick review: Superfood contains 18 potent super extracts of WHOLE fruits and vegetables, from common things like broccoli sprouts and spinach, to more exotic and healthful foods like pomegranate and acai berry.
Just a single teaspoon of Superfood is the anti-oxidant equivalent to eating between 10 and 12 average servings of fruits and vegetables. Plus it contains all the good stuff in green tea (EGCG, etc.). All this with no added sweetener, no food coloring, no hippie grasses, and no Testosterone-lowering herbs.
It's easy enough to take Superfood. Toss two little scoopers of the silky powder into a glass, stir and drink. Tastes like a lightly sweetened, fruity tea.
But let's have some fun with it, shall we? Not only do the recipes below add variety to your diet, but they're a great way to sneak extra vegetables and fruits into your family's meals.
Let's get to cookin'!
You don't exactly see the words "low carb" and "muffins" in the same sentence very often, and when you do it's usually followed by the words "...taste like woodchips."
Well, here's a low-carb muffin recipe that'll change that:
1 cup of almond meal or almond flour
1 teaspoon of baking powder
Handful or two of walnuts
2 omega-3 enriched whole eggs or 4 egg whites
1/4 cup water
1/4 cup Splenda
5 drops of imitation banana extract
5 drops of imitation coconut extract
1 serving Superfood
Pinch of salt
1/2 stick of butter (or half a cup, organic if you can find it)
1) Pre-heat the oven to 350 degrees.
2) Mix all the dry ingredients together, including Superfood, then add the wet ingredients. Use a hand mixer or whisk to form a thick batter.
3) Give a muffin pan a shot of Pam and fill each cup two-thirds of the way up. (You want to leave them some room to rise.)
4) Bake for 15 minutes.
• You can leave in the walnuts or take them out, or replace them with almonds, pecans, or macadamias if you'd like.
• I used non-caloric banana and coconut flavorings, but you can leave those out or sub them with anything you like. For example, add a few spoonfuls of sugar-free apricot preserves to the batter and to the top of each muffin. Toss is some dried apricots, too.
• Or try dried cranberries and chopped dates.
Yield: 6 muffins, each containing the equivalent of two average servings of fruits and vegetables!
Tip: These things come out fine in a Pam-sprayed nonstick muffin tin. But if you want to make them more portable, bake them in cupcake papers. That way you can microwave a couple and eat them on the way to work, you corporate drone you.
And by the way, how cool is it that you can eat a couple of these muffins in the car and get all those healthful fruits and veggies? Can't do that at the drive-thru, that's for damn sure.
The first time I tried Superfood it reminded me of berry tea, with notes of blueberry coming through a little stronger than the other flavors. So, if you're going to make a pie with it, blueberry seems to be the best complement.
This is an "icebox pie" so there's no cooking required. That means even big dumb powerlifters can make it. (Kidding, kidding. Don't get your blood pressure up.)
2 servings Superfood
Half-container of light or sugar-free Cool Whip
1 reduced-calorie graham cracker pie crust or sugar-free pie crust
2 boxes fat-free sugar-free pudding mix, cheesecake flavor
1 cup of organic blueberries
In a big bowl, whisk the milk with the Superfood. Now mix in half of the Cool Whip. Toss in the pudding mix and blueberries, whisk again, then pour into the crust.
Refrigerate for ten minutes or so before eating. Top with a spoonful of remaining Cool Whip if you're feeling frisky.
• If you want to drop the calories even more, simply ditch the pie crust and serve in bowls.
• Want to add more protein? Then toss in a scoop or two of low-carb vanilla Metabolic Drive.
• Works great with strawberries too!
Simple, fast, and containing just about every damn thing a growing boy or girl needs. This is my go-to shake for a true meal replacement. Great for adding quality calories to a mass diet, too.
3 scoops Metabolic Drive
1 serving Superfood
1 serving milled flax seeds
Now, here's the secret to making a truly delicious protein shake: ice. Blend with enough ice to give it a thick milkshake texture. I make mine so thick I can usually eat them with a spoon.
Ashlyn's Supershake for Picky Kids
My daughter is nine and she rules my world. And even though she eats better than most kids today, it's tough to get her to eat her veggies. She loves her Metabolic Drive shakes though, so we came up with this kid-friendly concoction that uses Superfood:
Half a cup of milk
1 scoop Superfood
Handful of mixed frozen berries of choice
Spoonful or two of vanilla ice cream
Half a scoop of vanilla Metabolic Drive
Whipped cream for a topper
Blend until smooth and give it a shot of whipped cream. Toss in some colorful bendy straws to make it fun, and serve. Kids will have no idea they're eating spinach and broccoli.
Raspberry Superfood Pancakes
One of my favorite things to do when cooking is to take something "bad" and make it healthier. I do this by adding fiber, replacing bad fats with good fats, adding protein, and using ingredients that lower the number of calories without making the portion smaller.
This latter method is sometimes called "volumetrics." For example, replace the eggs in a recipe with egg whites and the milk with skim or Calorie Countdown and you can knock hundreds of calories off the meal while still eating the same amount of food.
You don't do this out of an outdated fear of dietary fat, but to simply lower calories while still eating plenty of satiating food. Works much better than the "eat a tiny amount of bad food" method. I'd rather eat a lot of healthy food and get full, especially if I can make it taste as good as the unhealthy stuff.
Here's that theory applied to a breakfast favorite: pancakes.
1/2 cup whole grain pancake mix
1 egg white
1 scoop of low-carb vanilla Metabolic Drive
1 serving of Superfood
1/2 cup Calorie Countdown milk
1 cup of raspberries
1 tablespoon of Splenda if desired
Blend all the ingredients together except for the raspberries. Spray a nonstick pan with some Pam or canola and add batter. As the first side cooks, drop the raspberries onto the uncooked side. When it begins to bubble a lot, flip it.
The raspberries make these 'cakes so moist and sweet that syrup isn't even necessary.
Yield: 2 medium-sized pancakes
"Sex In a Bowl," i.e. Hot Fruit Compote
Here's a sweet, gooey, downright sensual recipe you can use to top pancakes, ice cream, or spread over your quivering girlfriend's tight little belly. *
Traditionally, a compote is made by simmering fruit in a sugar syrup. Here's a version that's still be a treat, but won't make you fat.
1/4 cup of water (or white wine if you're feeling naughty)
1 pound of dried plums (I like the "cherry essence" flavored plums)
1 pound or 1 package of dried apricots
1 can of unsweetened pineapple chunks (including juice)
1 can of unsweetened pitted cherries
1/3 cup Splenda
1 serving Superfood
1. Simply toss all the ingredients except the Superfood into the slow cooker (Crock Pot) and cook for 3-4 hours on high or 7-8 hours on low.
2. Mix the Superfood into a very small amount of water and stir, then add it into the compote. Stir and serve warm. You'll know immediately why I call it "sex in a bowl."
* Stains the heck out of your sheets. You've been warned.
Know what? You can just toss your Superfood into a glass of water and chug it if you want. Tastes perfectly fine. But if you're feeling creative, give these recipes a shot.
You can read more about Superfood or pick up a couple of tubs right HERE.