Chickpeas

The chickpea or garbanzo bean is a popular legume that began being cultivated in Turkey over 5,000 years ago. Chickpeas are a nutrient dense food high in protein as well as potassium, magnesium, phosphorus, calcium and iron and vitamins A and B. They are also a very versatile food that are used in delicious dishes such as hummus, falafel, curries, and salads. In addition, chickpea flour and aquafaba, the liquid from the can of beans, which can be whipped just like egg whites, are great tools for baking! Being both delicious and nutritious consider adding a chickpea based dish into your meal rotation.

Photo: Unsplash

Grilled Steak with Cabbage Slaw

What do we at Metabolic Balance like to grill? One thing is for sure: Lots of fresh, natural ingredients – especially deliciously prepared and combined. Today we have an easy grilling recipe that fits that description!

Ingredients:

1 serving of beef steak

1 serving of vegetables (cabbage and bell peppers)

Salt, pepper, nutmeg

Vinegar

Fresh chives

Preparation:

Clean cabbage and cut into thin strips. Mix a pinch of salt with the cabbage and let stand for about 15 minutes. Halve the bell peppers, clean, wash and cut into strips. Season the steak with salt and pepper. Cook on the grill for 6-8 minutes while turning. Wrap the steak in aluminum foil and let rest for about 10 minutes. Wash chives, shake dry and cut into small rolls. Mix bell peppers, chives, vinegar and cabbage, season with salt and pepper. Plate the steak and cabbage salad and enjoy!

Healthy Weight Loss

Do you want to lose weight permanently? The scientifically based mental strategy “WOOP” can help you to achieve your goals – be it the body for the summer or something else altogether. The secret is not to achieve your wishes only by positive thinking. In fact, with WOOP a realistic plan is forged that accompanies you step by step. The acronym stands for Wish, Obstacle, Outcome, and Plan.

With the help of the “WOOP” method you imagine for example firmly that you would like to lose a pounds, which is the wish. Junk food or sugary foods now represent your personal obstacle to achieving this goal. So you make a plan for yourself to eat very little of them or to stay away from them altogether and stick to healthy foods instead. While the unhealthy foods used to be classified by you as pure enjoyment, now their meaning has automatically changed for you. They are seen as a potential hurdle to achieving your goals, and you decide to eat little of it or not at all. It doesn’t take long and you automatically lose your desire for them. Sounds simple, doesn’t it? Why don’t you give it a try?

Protein – not only for Building Muscle

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Protein is “THE” building block in the body. It consists of up to 50,000 protein compounds with vital functions. From muscles, skin, connective tissue, blood vessels, internal organs to hormones and enzymes – proteins are needed everywhere. Vital protein compounds are also needed for many biologically active substances, which provide, e.g., for the transport of iron or oxygen in the blood, for the immune system or bone metabolism. Protein makes up the largest proportion of human body mass in adults, at about 10 kg (about 22 lbs). The dry weight of many body cells consists of more than 50% protein.

Although protein is one of the energy-providing macronutrients along with fats and carbohydrates, it occupies a special position because it is never primarily stored in the body as energy. Unlike fats, which are stored in adipose tissue, and carbohydrates, which are stored as glycogen in the liver and muscle, proteins always have a specific function.

That is why protein is also an indispensable part of our nutrition. Whether vegetable or animal protein – in the stomach and intestines, the digestive juices break down the food protein into its smallest components, the amino acids.

To keep all vital processes running, amino acids must be available in sufficient quantities at all times. This is because thousands of repair processes take place in every cell every day, during which complex proteins are broken down into their individual components and are renewed.

Recommended daily protein requirement

If protein is lacking, it quickly becomes noticeable. Nails, hair and skin suffer, they become brittle, dull and wrinkled. Physical strength is also diminishing. We get tired quickly and are often exhausted for no reason.

How much protein is healthy for the individual cannot be answered in general terms. The German Nutrition Society (DGE) as well as the WHO recommend eating at least 0.8 g of protein per kg of body weight daily (0.36 grams per lbs).

A “high-protein” nutrition is considered to be, when 30 percent of food energy is absorbed in the form of protein. According to scientific studies, a nutrition rich in proteins can prevent some diseases of civilization. For example, studies have concluded that high-protein food can improve the metabolic condition of type 2 diabetes mellitus, lower liver fat, reduce inflammatory processes and improve the overall lipid profile in the blood.

Although we actually consume plenty of protein-rich foods, the positive effect is lost. Scientific research brings it to light: it is primarily due to the combination of “a lot of protein paired with unhealthy nutrients.”. Our nutrition usually looks like this: lots of meat and sausages with plenty of additives. We neglect vegetables and fruits and absorb too little fiber and polyunsaturated fatty acids. This increases the risk of lipometabolic disorders, diabetes or cardiovascular diseases, despite a high-protein nutrition.

Protein quality – Biological Value

In addition to the appropriate protein intake, the quality of the protein is particularly important. The quality of the protein is defined by the eight essential amino acids. The dietary proteins have a different composition and the quality of the dietary proteins is calculated on the basis of the limiting essential amino acid in each case. In this case, it is not the highest possible protein content of the food that is decisive for the quality of the protein, but how much of this protein content can be converted into the body’s own protein.

In general, plant proteins have a lower value than animal proteins, which are more similar in composition to the human amino acid profile.

Higher biological values can be achieved by clever combinations of foods. If a food contains smaller amounts of certain amino acids, it can be supplemented with another food that has an excess of these amino acids. In general, it is recommended to combine animal with plant protein sources in order to achieve a higher biological value. However, it must always be taken into account that the individual protein components must be consumed in a certain proportion in order to utilize the optimum effect. For example, 35% potatoes combined with 65% cottage cheese results in a biological value of approx. 136, or 22% potatoes and 78% beef have a biological value of 114.

A supply of dietary proteins with a high biological value also has a positive overall effect on the acid-base balance, because most of the amino acids supplied can be utilized by the body. When eating foods with a low biological value, on the other hand, an excess of amino acids accumulates that are not needed by the body in the first place and have to be buffered or neutralized and excreted accordingly, which overtaxes the body and metabolism in the long run. An accumulation of acids blocks the metabolism. This has an effect on the well-being. Fatigue and lack of concentration can be acompanying symptoms. Inflammation, muscle and joint complaints often occur, and weight loss is also delayed.

Protein powder – Sense or nonsense?

Protein powders or protein shakes are no longer only popular among bodybuilders – recreational athletes are also increasingly using the diverse range of protein powders and ready-to-drinks (RTD) to build up muscles or lose weight. Nevertheless, there are always critics who refer to these additional protein portions as superfluous or even unhealthy.

Protein powders are available in concentrates, isolates or hydrolyzates. The first two forms differ only in their protein content (concentrate 80%, isolate 90%). In the hydrolyzate, the proteins have already been broken down into smaller amino acid chains and thus enter the blood more quickly. However, this leads to the fact that the amino acid concentration in the blood increases faster, with the consequence that the amino acids are increasingly used for energy production instead of protein synthesis, which are actually important for muscle building.

Protein shakes are also often used for weight reduction. Over a short period of time, this can be a useful meal replacement, especially if the shake replaces the evening meal. This additionally boosts the metabolism and at the same time achieves a long-lasting feeling of satiety. However, when choosing protein powders, the composition should be closely scrutinized. Often, the various protein shakes contain, in addition to high-quality protein, a variety of additives and also sugar, which block the metabolism and have a negative impact on weight loss.

Metabolic Balance and the macronutrient Protein

At Metabolic Balance, the macronutrient protein is also an important component in our nutrition plans. The targeted selection of high-quality animal and plant protein-rich foods, which are combined with vegetables and fruits, creates the basis for a balanced metabolism. The body is supplied with all the valuable protein building blocks and at the same time, excess acids produced during metabolism can be neutralized more easily by the vitamins and minerals from vegetables and fruit.

For a healthy nutrition, it also makes sense to consume different protein sources (e.g. fish, meat, eggs, cheese, sprouts, legumes, mushrooms, seeds or nuts) in a certain proportion throughout the day. In addition, it has proven to be particularly advantageous that only one type of protein per meal contributes to a rapid balancing of the acid-base balance, as hyperacidity can be largely avoided and at the same time the de-acidification of the body is supported.

In addition to the quality of the protein and the frequency of its consumption, the arrangement of the meals with protein is also an important pillar for Metabolic Balance. That means if you want to gently balance your metabolism and relieve the digestive organs, you always start your meal with one or two bites of the protein component. This way, the pancreas first produces the hormone glucagon, which is necessary for protein digestion, and the production of insulin is reduced. This, in combination with complex carbohydrates (vegetables, whole grains), forms a long-lasting fullness and the absence of cravings.

Sources:

  1. http://www.deutsche-apotheker-zeitung.de/news/artikel/
  2. Bill Campbell, Richard B Kreider et.al: International Society of sports Nutrition position stand: protein and exercise; Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition (2007)
  3. Mag.rer.nat. Eddie Semler: Eiweiß unter Verdacht; UGB-Forum 3/2003, S.122-124
  4. Jiaqi Huang, Linda M Liao et.al.: Association Between Plant and Animal Protein Intake and Overall and Cause – Specific Mortality; JAMA Intern Med. 2020 Sep 1; 180(9) DOI: 10.1001/jamainternmed.2020.2790

Peaches

Peaches are a popular summertime fruit thought to have originated from Asia more than 8,000 years ago. Considered a stone fruit they are closely related to plums, nectarines, and apricots. Peaches are very nutritious and offer many health benefits. They are packed with antioxidants, fiber, minerals, and vitamins including vitamins A and K. In addition, peaches are associated with improving digestion, skin health, and improving heart health. Peaches are easy to incorporate into your diet, they can be eaten raw, canned, and used in both sweet and savory dishes.

Picture: Unsplash

Healthy Grilling

Tips for a healthy barbeque : Leave out filling side dishes like mac and cheese or bread and give your body extra healthy carbohydrates in the form of vegetables. Grilling vegetables gives them a particularly delicious flavor. They can be put on skewers in a colorful mix, for example, but they also cook wonderfully in grill bowls. You don’t always have to use barbecue classics like corn, peppers or zucchini. Other vegetables such as asparagus, eggplant, fennel or pumpkin also do well on the hot barbecue. To prevent them from sticking to the grill, brush them with a little oil beforehand and season them at the same time. Then put them on the barbecue and in a few minutes you can enjoy them.

Easy Grilling Marinade

Today we want to share a recipe for a delicious barbecue marinade that is easy to make and perfect for a summer night!

Ingredients:
1/2 cup (125 mL) rapeseed oil
1 large grated onion
1 Tbsp. freshly chopped parsley
2 Tbsp. balsamic vinegar
2 garlic cloves (chopped)
Smoked paprika and red pepper flakes
Salt and pepper

Preparation:
Mix all of the ingredients together. Place any type of protein or vegetable in the marinade for at least three hours, or even better overnight before grilling. Enjoy!

The Truth About Sugar

Ever since the advent of low-fat foods, sugar has become an ingredient found in thousands of products in grocery stores. From tomato sauce to nut butters, many foods have hidden amounts of sugar. Consuming too much sugar may have serious health consequences and can lead to dental decay and diabetes. Elevated insulin levels caused by eating too many refined carbohydrates such as sugar also increases the risk of:

1. Weight gain, especially around the stomach area. Sugar alters our appetite-regulating hormones, causing us to crave more of it. We also store excess sugars in the most easily-accessible fat cells around our liver, resulting in the famous ‘apple shape’

2. Joint pain. Excess sugar lead to unwanted inflammation which can lead to inflamed joints

3. Wrinkly skin. Spare sugar molecules attach to ‘AGE’ (advanced glycation end products) in the bloodstream, and together they damage the structure of healthy skin causing sagginess and wrinkles

4. Liver diseases. It’s not just alcohol that can cause liver disease. Fructose from juice, corn syrup and very high fruit consumption can accumulate as fat in the liver, leading to non-alcoholic fatty liver disease.

5. Heart disease. High insulin levels are caused by excess refined carbohydrates and this can damage arteries. Conditions such as high blood pressure, raised cholesterol and heart disease.

The good news is that this is all avoidable! Taking regular simple steps to reduce your sugar intake can make a huge difference.

If you want to reset your body and balance your metabolism with expert, professional help and our scientifically-proven wholefood program, get in touch.

Adapted: Metabolic Balance Australia and New Zealand

Summer!

It’s summertime! During these months many of us enjoy the beautiful weather and spending time outside. Research from the University of Massachusetts Medical School and the University of Georgia, demonstrates that our average caloric intake decreases about 200 calories per day in the summer compared to fall and winter. That makes weight loss easier during this time around. It’s a perfect opportunity for you to make healthier choices and increase your health and wellbeing! To learn more about the Metabolic Balance program and to connect with one of our coaches visit our website: https://www.metabolic-balance.us/.

What Can I Eat?

One way to try and alleviate symptoms of chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS) is to improve your diet. Whether we have CFS or just day-to-day low energy, having some staple recipes is a great way to make sure we eat well and in a way that maximizes energy.

Try these simple tips for eating well when energy is low:

– Include protein with every meal such as having nuts with an apple. Protein supports the brain and may improve mood and immune function.

– Avoid stimulants such as coffee, sugar and alcohol. These will give you short term energy but are not sustainable long term.
– Include bitter foods such as dandelion greens or arugula- available in supermarkets in with bagged salad section. The bitter taste helps stimulate your taste buds, and improve absorption of nutrients from your food.

– Try batch cooking meals and keeping portions in the freezer. A curry or chili recipe is easy to make and can be packed full of healthy and delicious foods.

-Use a program such as Metabolic Balance ® to stabilize your blood sugar and energy levels and add consistency to your life.

Photo: Metabolic Balance Australia and New Zealand