The Best Sources of Omega-3 Fatty Acids

The Best Sources of Omega-3 Fatty Acids

Omega-3 fatty acids have received a lot of attention lately for their health benefits – and for a good reason! These polyunsaturated fatty acids have been linked to lowered levels of inflammation, risk for cardiovascular disease and even memory loss.

For the most part, the standard American diet is very deficient in omega-3s. By increasing your intake of omega-3s through food sources, you can drastically improve your overall health. Although this nutrition topic is very complex and expanding constantly, the main thing we know is this: increasing your consumption of the following omega-3 rich foods will increase your body’s omega-3 supply, in turn improving your health and well-being.

Fatty Fish: Albacore tuna, mackerel, anchovies and fresh-caught salmon are the best sources of omega-3s. These types of fish eat a less soluble form of omega-3s (ALA) through seaweed and convert it to the most beneficial forms for our bodies (EPA and DHA). Eating these types of fish, or supplementing with a 1,000-1,500 mg daily dose of fish oil, is an excellent way to improve your health.

Almonds: In addition to being an excellent source of antioxidants, protein, and beneficial vitamins and minerals, almonds are also an excellent source of plant-based omega-3s.

Flax Seeds: These fiber and omega-3-packed seeds can easily be added to your diet by sprinkling them on oatmeal, cereals, salads and smoothies. Just make sure to grind or buy already ground flax seed so your body can fully absorb the amazing nutrients flax has to offer.

Chia Seeds: These seeds may be one of the smallest and most nutritious foods in the world. Chia seeds contain 10 grams of fiber in just 2 tablespoons, and are an excellent source of omega-3 fatty acids, as well as iron, calcium and magnesium.

We’re crazy about Omega-3 fatty acids which is a big reason why chia seeds are a key ingredient in all of our Betsy’s Best Peanut, Almond and Seed Butters. Each serving contains all of your daily Omega-3 needs!

There’s a Reason to Eat your Fruit and Vegetables this Season

It is a known fact that you can walk into a grocery store and find almost every type of fruit and vegetable available no matter if it is locally out of season. We eat kiwi from Italy, grapes from Mexico, clementines from Argentina, and apples from Chili. A lot of our produce is imported, but there are still local farmers growing produce for our local markets and farmers markets. Here is a guide to help you in your quest for buying your produce locally in the peak of it’s season.

Remember to get 2-3 servings of fruit and 3-5 servings of vegetables a day to help keep your body healthy. Fruits make a wonderful snack or treat for dessert, and vegetables should accompany every meal. We love to pair our Betsy’s Best with many fruits such as pears, apples, bananas, and even strawberries. It is also delicious to dip celery and carrots into Betsy’s Best! Produce is the perfectly packaged quick snack, and more nourishing than something that would come in a package or with a wrapper.

Here’s a snack that packs a powerful punch–Nutty-licious Kale Chips. Try this recipe and those unhealthy chips will become a thing of the past!

How To Eat Chia Seeds

How To Eat Chia Seeds

Betsy knows why and how to eat chia seeds!

The chia seed is a super food and one of the healthiest seeds in the world. It also makes for an interesting ingredient, although most people don’t know how to cook with it. Betsy’s Best features chia seeds in all of our gourmet nut and seed butters because it offers a satisfying crunch, increased fiber, protein, omega 3 fatty acid and calcium. Yes, you could buy a chia pet and grow green hair, but that is a waste of a perfectly balanced seed full of nutrients.

Why Chia Seeds Are Good For You

The most interesting fact about chia is that no other seed can do what the chia has the capacity to do. It absorbs up to 12 times its weight in water, so when water is added to dry chia the seed expands just like a balloon. The clear gelatinous outer coating is the chia soaking up the water and retaining it within its walls. When the chia is hydrated, it turns an insoluble fibrous seed into a soluble fiber seed. Soluble fiber acts like a gel and slows gut digestion, which is why the chia seed is touted as a weight loss and appetite suppressant—it keeps you full!

Many athletes swear by chia seeds because of the water balloon effect. Also, the additional water supplied and held by the chia helps keep an athlete hydrated during endurance performances.

How to Eat Chia Seeds

When it comes to cooking, here’s a quick crash course on how to include chia in your everyday dishes. The trick is to think of chia as a starch. Add it to sauces, gravy, dressings, pudding, smoothies, or anything you want to thicken. Using the chia seed whole offers a tapioca pearl effect; grinding the chia into a meal allows you to use it just as you would use any starch.

This functional food ingredient offers your meal more filling fiber, more protein, more calcium, more omega 3 fatty acids, and calcium to boot. There’s only one question to ask: Why wouldn’t you use chia?!

Now that you know the benefits of chia seeds, discover all the incredible ways to use this savvy seed. Here is one of Betsy’s favorite chia seed recipes for you to enjoy!

Blueberry Chia Seed Jam Recipe

  • 3 cups fresh or frozen blueberries
  • 3-4 tbsp pure maple syrup, to taste (or other liquid sweetener)
  • 2 tbsp chia seeds
  • 1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract

 Recipe Directions:

Step 1: In a medium-sized non-stick pot, bring the blueberries and 3 tbsp of maple syrup to a low boil. Stir frequently, and reduce heat to low-medium to simmer for about 5 minutes.

Step 2: Lightly mash the blueberries with a potato masher or fork, leaving some for texture.

Step 3: Stir in the chia seeds until thoroughly combined and cook the mixture down until it thickens to your desired consistency, or about 15 minutes. Stir frequently so it doesn’t stick to the pot.

Step 4: Once the jam is thick, remove from heat and stir in the vanilla extract. Add more maple syrup to taste if desired. Enjoy with your favorite Betsy’s Best Gourmet Nut Butter. The jam should keep for at least a week in an air-tight container in the fridge.

Now that you know why and how to eat chia seeds we hope you’ll visit our website often.  Betsy has over 200 recipes with her gourmet nut and seed butters.  Since her spreads all have chia seeds in them her creations are an outstanding way to improve the flavor and nutrition of the foods you eat!

Bonkers for the Health Benefits of Bananas

Bonkers for the Health Benefits of Bananas

Why should we go bonkers for BANANAS? Bananas are loaded with important health benefits. They offer powerful protection of the cardiovascular system because of the rich nutrient called potassium, which helps guard against high blood pressure. Bananas also contain an element called fructooligosaccharide, which is better known as a prebiotic. This substance not only acts as a food source for healthy bacteria lining the gut, it also helps calcium absorb in your intestine for stronger bones and beautiful teeth.

The Health Benefits of Bananas

Ever wonder why you feel so good after eating bananas? That feel-good mood has something to do with bananas’ electrolyte enhancing minerals and hormone balancing tryptophan, serotonin and norepinephrine. Bananas and peanut butter on whole wheat toast.These help fight depression, increase feelings of well-being and relaxation, and also have the ability to fight off sleeplessness and mood swings. Plus, they not only leave you feeling good, they keep your tummy happy too! Bananas actually suppress acid in the stomach, which helps ease heartburn and fight against ulcers. They are also an excellent source of pectin, a soluble fiber that helps eliminate waste and toxins from the body and also help the body get rid of cholesterol in the foods you are eating. It’s not hard to see why we’re bananas over the health benefits of this incredibly tasty fruit! Next time you hesitate to reach for a banana because you think it’s loaded with sugar and carbs, think again. One small banana has just 90 calories and 12g of sugar. That’s less than your traditional Greek yogurt, a Starbucks Frappuccino or a Nutri-Grain granola bar! Pick up a banana to peel back a bit of deliciousness and bite off a chunk of nutrients that will fuel your body from the inside out!

Cookie dough ice cream sundae recipeWant to supercharge your health with bananas? Pair up your favorite Betsy’s Best Nut and Seed Butter with a banana for a snack. Whether you spread, dip, or scoop Betsy’s Best onto a banana, every bite will be perfect. You can even take tasty bananas and Betsy’s Best to the next level by creating a healthy treat. Even though it is cold outside, try Betsy’s Cookie Dough Banana Sundae recipe (pictured below) that will warm your heart, and taste buds!

Cookie Dough Banana Sundae  – Gluten-Free, Non-Dairy

Cookie Dough Banana Sundae – Gluten-Free, Non-Dairy

Do you love ice cream sundaes but hate what they do to your waistline? With this Cookie Dough Banana Sundae recipe you can enjoy a deliciously cold treat while treating your body to great health. Even better, this sundae is gluten-free, dairy free, and vegetarian.

  • 2 frozen bananas, peel removed
  • ½ cup Betsy’s Best Gourmet Peanut Butter
  • ¼ cup rolled oats
  • ¼ cup oat flour
  • 1 Tbsp natural cane sugar
  • ¼ tsp sea salt
  • ½ tsp pure vanilla extract
  • 3 Tbsp pure maple syrup (or honey)
  • ¼ cup dark chocolate chips

Cookie Dough Balls:

In a food processor, process Betsy’s Best and oats until reaching a fine crumble. Add flour, sugar and salt, and process for a few seconds. Pour in maple syrup and vanilla, processing until combined. Dough should be sticky. Stir in chocolate chips. Form dough into tiny marble-size balls. Store in freezer.

Ice Cream:

In a blender, blend frozen bananas until smooth (like soft serve ice cream). Add ¼ cup cookie dough balls to blender and process until creamy. Stir in remaining ¼ cup cookie dough balls by hand. Scoop ice cream into two bowls and enjoy!

Enjoy a guilt-free evening as you satisfy your sweet tooth with our homemade cookie dough banana sundae.