8 Peruvian Superfoods to boost Immunity
What is your Superpower?
Studies say that every place in the world has a specific vibration. Peru has foods that hold not only a high vibration, but also, high nutritional powers that can help you balance your: sugar-levels, hormones, and anti-oxidants. On top of it they work as anti-viral, anti-bacterial, and give you a boost of immunity. These nutritious powerhouses are built with phytonutrients (nutrients made in plants ) which are natural bioactive compounds that work together with vitamins, minerals, and fibre to promote good health. We have put together a list of Peruvian Superfoods that can help you build immunity over the winter, and help you enjoy the warmer months wherever you are. These can be found in Health stores around North America.
- MACA: Growing in high altitudes in the Andes, Maca root is known for its resilient nature. It grows under extreme cold weather. It helps restore hormonal balance in men and women. It enhances strength, libido, and energy levels. It is great for reproductive health. There are different colours, and types of Maca. Colours in plants show the diverse phytonutrients and specific health properties.
- CAMU CAMU: Camu Camu grows in the Amazonian region. It is a berry that has a high amount of vitamin C. It specifically contains 60 times the amount of vitamin C in oranges. Hence, perfect for Flu season, and to send the winter blahs away! Acerola and acai are two superfoods known for their extremely high vitamin C content, but camu camu contains even more vitamin C. It is sold as a powder.
- KIWICHA: Grows wonderfully in the fertile grounds of Cusco, Peru. It is a seed that colors the Andes, its home is in the Latin American Highlands, once known as the Inca Empire. It was revered in the Andes in Pre-colonial times. It is Rich in vitamin B6 and B9. These help boost metabolism and increase energy levels. Kiwicha has a generous amount of fibre. It contains phenolic acids, carotenoids, and flavonoids which impart antioxidant properties. It also contains squaline, an organic compound found in some plants, which acts as an anti-cancer agent and may be cardio-protective as well due to its ability to lower LDL, total cholesterol, and triglycerides. It is harder to find, yet it has been making its appearance more in health bars.
- QUINOA: Grows in the Latin American Highlands. It is a seed that contains high levels of protein. It provides fiber which helps reduce cholesterol levels. Quinoa fosters immunity and boosts circulation. It provides all nine essential amino acids. Do we need to say more? QUINOA can be prepared in salads, and boiled easily. It was revered by the Incas, and is still consumed vastly in the Peruvian diet. It can be found in regular supermarkets yet, we recommend to buy it organic.
- LUCUMA: A Peruvian Ice Cream favourite! This fruit was revered by the Incas as a sign of fertility and creation. It was called the “Gold of the Incas” and its maple-like delicious taste makes for delicious desserts and ice-cream in the summer months. It has been growing in the Andean valley for centuries. This fruit contains high amounts of sodium, potassium, magnesium, and calcium. Recent research shows that lucuma may be helpful for supporting skin health, blood sugar, and even cardiovascular health. It has anti-inflammatory properties that help keep skin healthy. It may also help in the healing of wounds. It is sold as a powder.
- PURPLE CORN: Known in Peru for its traditional taste in ” Chicha morada,” purple corn was revered by the Incas, and used in ceremonial events. Purple corn has been grown and harvested in the Andean region of South America—primarily Peru, Ecuador, Bolivia and Argentina. Purple Corn is powerful in antioxidants. It helps the body get rid of toxins. It’s source of antioxidants and anthocyanin also help strengthen red blood vessels and blood circulation. Research proves that anthocyanin provides with positive results in: anti-obesity/weight management and in preventing cancer. It is harder to find it in Canada but, it is making its way slowly but surely.
- CAT’S CLAW: Growing in the Amazon Rain Forest and some areas of Central America, Cat’s Claw can be a great aid for those who suffer stomach problems, Cat’s Claw helps with digestion and is also known to fight cancerous cells. The Incas made use of it to ease conditions such as asthma, stomach ulcers, arthritis, and inflammation. The Incas where known to use cat’s claw for viral infections and to build immunity. It is sold in capsules and as herbal medicine.
- CHIRIMOYA: Deeply loved and cultivated by the Incas, it is a sweet delicacy like Lucuma but juicier. Chirimoya is rich in finer, B complex vitamins, and potassium. It is a wonderful source of vitamin C, and collagen. The Incas called her “Chirimuya” which means cold seed. It is a highly nutritious fruit, rich in carbohydrates, including predominantly glucose and fructose, minerals such as phosphorus and potassium, water, fiber and several vitamins, especially vitamin C. Chirimoya is challenging to find in North America.
Most of the Superfoods we mentioned are best sold as powders and they ask you to be mindful of portions, being potent in flavour and nutrients, it is better to have them in portions. This is where measuring cups and spoons come in handy in your kitchen! We will be introducing these soon on our blog, as well as sharing more recipes, and nutrition facts. Powders mix tastefully in: smoothies, tea elixirs, and sometimes desserts. They are a wonderful start of the day boost of power and confidence. I advise to start introducing them little by little into your kitchen and to get to know their reactions in your body and life! Have you tried a food journal? This can help nourish our bio-individuality and food reactions on a deeper level. We will be talking more about this on our next blog. Make sure to follow us and comment for any questions.