This little bowl of goodness pretty much sums up my philosophy on food + healthy eating!  First of all, I feel anything and everything we put into our bodies should have properties that bring us greater health. If not, what’s the point? Probably short-term satisfaction, which means it is usually at the expense of long-term gain. Therein lies so much information!  The next important factors I consider are taste + beauty!  When you take the time to prepare your food beautifully, it fuels self-love and floods your system with tons of positive energy + vibrations…….a plus for all of us! The reasons why this chia pudding sums up what I feel is important when it comes to health + nutrition is because every ingredient in it has power + purpose in building health within our bodies. Not only is this little bowl healthful, but it is beautiful + delicious.  I love having to research and dig for the not so common ingredients that seem like the more obscure they are, the greater their power! Then, combining them in ways that taste amazing and make a spectacular presentation! Sourcing ingredients, researching + bringing them all together in a gorgeous, tasty, practically medicinal meal is pure joy! This chia pudding encompasses all of that! I don’t come up with this all on my own, obviously! Some of my greatest inspiration comes from leaders in integrative + functional medicine, as well as, whole foods chefs.  One of my all-time favorites is Amy Chaplin at amychaplin.com. I would have never thought of the bee pollen + dried raspberry topping if it were not for her amazing cookbooks!  I was so excited about her newest cookbook that just came out a few months ago, that I accidentally ordered two! I was so surprised and a tiny bit embarrassed when the second one arrived, mostly for making a mistake in ordering the same book twice. But, I did my best to laugh it off, look at the reality of how much I had been anticipating the release of another Amy Chaplin cookbook and then savored how great it felt gifting it to a really special friend.  That took effort, but was so much better than beating myself up over it!

This stunning blue-green spirulina is disease fighting, immune strengthening + all around nature’s medicine without the harmful side-effects that are part of all man-made pharmaceuticals!  Our bodies know just how to utilize natural, whole foods to heal + strengthen for optimal health!  Some of the most exciting properties of blue-green spirulina is that it revs up the action of white blood cells and increases the action of our natural killer cells, while enhancing antibody function!  Wow + wow!  It contains ten times the beta carotene as carrots, and it’s rich in protein, iron + trace minerals!  Plus it’s a stunning shade of blue!

Even without the blue-green spirulina, this chia pudding makes for a powerful snack or breakfast, or even a stand in for a super healthy dessert!  Here’s why….before anything, I start with making a batch of homemade cashew milk, which I have a short video of how to make cashew milk here on my website.  Cashews are a great source of magnesium, which many of us are deficient in if we are among the masses who aren’t really thinking about how what they eat affects their body.  Also, healthy fats are nourishing to our systems and help to keep our bodies in good working order!  They are hydrating, feed our skin and support healthy heart function!  And, nut milks are a way better choice over the highly inflammatory cow’s milk!  Plus, cashew milk’s creaminess makes this chia pudding seem more like a fancy dessert than health food! Did you know chia seeds have five times the calcium of cow’s milk?! Yasss! They give us energy that lasts + they are anti-inflammatory which helps prevent illnesses and disease. And, amazingly, chia seeds are a complete protein!  It is no wonder the Aztec’s + Mayan’s regarded them as sacred!  We all should too!

Coconut manna is one of the other main ingredients in this chia pudding, even though there is just a small amount.  What is coconut manna, you may ask……it’s simply purèed whole coconut.  When cooking with whole foods, I’ve noticed even the smallest amount of an ingredient can have a huge impact on the nutrient values. The coconut not only ups the yumminess of this pudding, but it is also anti-inflammatory, fights bacteria, yeasts, viruses and super charges the liver’s detox powers, which fuels our energy stores in how it is metabolized in the liver!  

Every ingredient in this pudding has specific properties to fight free-radicals, inflammation and other things that cause disease but just as important, these ingredients strengthen our immunity, create health + nourish our bodies in a way only pure, whole foods as close to their natural source in nature can.  To add to the beauty and potency, my favorite topping is bee pollen + crushed dried raspberries!  Another is  toasted pecans + bananas! The possibilities are endless!   I hope you will try it! The recipe is here cashew chia pudding  You may even consider it your favorite non-dessert, dessert of all time!!  xxo!

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