Endurance driven athletes are fueled by motivation, persistence and of course: food. Through Netflix documentaries, fast food nations and super-size-me stunts, the shadows of the food industry are quickly being lit by the hot light of Hollywood.
This is good news for those of us in the world of clean eating. People are voting with their wallets and it’s showing up in grocery stores across the country. More selection, better taste and amazing results make the clean eating wave. Individuals practicing clean eating report an increase in happiness, energy and endurance. The chart below comes from the Office for National Statistics. Compiled responses from people reporting on their own wellbeing show health as the overwhelming leader in what drives personal wellbeing.
Clean eating has a simple goal: consume food with the shortest path from origin to plate. Processed? Not clean. Refined? Not clean. Behind the glass of a vending machine? Most definitely not clean!
Here are a few power foods we here at Omnibar believe help drive our endurance athletes and deliver a delicious and healthy option for adventure.
Not the type of butter you pump onto movie theater popcorn. Almond butter can be used as a substitute for high sugar and high preservative peanut butter. Rich in vitamin E, almond butter helps reduce the risk of cognitive disease. Almonds lower cholesterol and reduce blood sugar spikes and they can have positive effects on heart health.
Wait, aren’t french fries made from potatoes? This is true, however, the sweet potato is to the potato as you are to your uncle Jimmy. Yes, you share some of the same relatives, but you couldn’t be more different. The Center for Science in the Public Interest calls the sweet potato one of the most nutritious vegetables in the world. Some like to enjoy sweet potatoes smothered in butter and caked with some brown sugar (not clean). As a raw ingredient, it provides a big impact on taste and an even bigger impact on health. From a science standpoint, sweet potatoes are rich in vitamin C and a great source of fiber and potassium. Vitamins and minerals that help athletes stay healthy by boosting immune systems and recover faster.
Rosemary looks nice in a fancy cocktail, but as a raw ingredient, in days-of-old, rosemary was hailed for its medicinal powers and it was thought to help hair-growth. Although science doesn’t exactly prove the hair-growth claim, rosemary is high in calcium and vitamin B6. As an herb, you’re not going to be serving an entree of the christmas-tree scented green, but in the world of clean eating, rosemary is a herb of choice. Calcium, of course, promotes bone strength and helps the endurance driven athlete do what they love longer into life.
Flaxseed just sounds like an ingredient with troves of health benefits. Luckily, there’s scientific research to back it up. A term most people haven’t heard before is hypertension. Commonly known as high-blood-pressure, flaxseed is shown by Greek researchers to be able to help decrease blood pressure. For endurance driven athletes, this means avoiding painful headaches. Oh, and Iowa State University researchers found it lowers cholesterol and reduces the risk of prostate cancer in men. Treasure troves of benefits.
Dried plums, also known as prunes, help the endurance athlete keep the bowels clean. Managing the bathroom stop is a delicate science. Let plums help! Ironman? Plums and prunes help increase the absorption of iron into the body. For athletes, iron is a fuel that can’t be ignored. Eradicating different causes of fatigue is a health benefit and an attractive one at that.
Have a favorite power food? Let us know on twitter about it!