So working at the Healthy Spirit is great, I get to make food and talk about nutrition and natural healthcare with like-minded people.
One of the salad dishes I regularly prepare is made from freshly grated organic carrots, flavoured with fresh ginger, lemon and orange juice. Toasted pumpkin seeds add a nice crunch and contrasting texture to this salad. I'm doing a slight variation of this salad using pumpkin and sunflower seeds.
At the Healthy Spirit local produce is used as much as possible. I know we can get fruits and vegetables all year round but seasonal foods are more cost-effective and better tuned to the local environment we live in. Let me give you an example of how non seasonal eating may influence the body. Cucumber has a natural cooling effect, which is perfect for reducing heat. Eating non-seasonal cucumber during Winter could create an imbalance with someone who has low body temperature issues making their body feel colder.
Main Health Benefits of this Salad:
Carrots make up the bulk of this salad. They
- Help to maintain blood pressure due to minerals like potassium
- Protect cells from damage. Carrots contain cell protecting anti-oxidants like vitamin C and beta carotene. Beta carotene is also converted in the body to vitamin A, which also has many important functions including supporting the mucous membranes, hair, skin eyes, and nails.
- Support the liver with detoxification
- Help lower cholesterol and maintain digestion due to soluble fibre pectin and they are also a source of prebiotics, which feed and support healthy gut bacteria.
Other components to this salad
- Pumpkin/Sunflower Seeds are a source of protein, vitamin E, essential fats including omega 3 and 6, and minerals like zinc and magnesium. These seeds also contain lecithin which supports the brain and aids fat digestion
- Ginger supports digestion, circulation and provides a nice tingly heat to the salad
- Orange and Lemon juice are rich in vitamin C, are alkalising, support the liver with detoxification and provide a nice citrus tang. The zest is packed with many nutrients including antioxidants vitamin beta carotene, C and E. The nutrients in citrus zest can help to protect cells from damage and strengthen tissues rich in collagen and elastin such as the blood vessels. Aim to use organic citrus fruits to avoid ingesting pesticides and insecticides, otherwise wash fruit thoroughly.
Here's how I made my carrot salad
5-6 medium carrots
1 inch piece of ginger
4 tbsp pumpkin/sunflower seeds (pre-soaked for at least 6 hours, this helps them to be more digestible)
- I toasted the pre-soaked pumpkin/sunflower seeds in my cast iron skillet to dry them and release some aroma and essential oils.
- I then let my toasted seeds cool, whilst I peeled and grated my carrots.
- Next I grated the zest from my orange and lemon, juiced the fruits and then added the zest to the orange/lemon juice.
- I grated my ginger piece and mixed it into the lemon/orange/zest juice mixture to make a dressing.
- Finally, I mixed the dressing with the grated carrots and then added the toasted seeds.
An easy salad to make which may be stored in the fridge for around a week. It combines well with other salads like beetroot, date and fennel salad or dips like hummus and pesto.