Our Superfood Ingredients
The common dandelion, translated from the French, dent-de-lion, meaning 'lion's tooth,' grows prolifically in North America. It is often viewed as a common weed despite the fact that for much of recorded history the ancient Egyptians, Greeks, Romans, Chinese, and Native Americans have used it as a source of food and for its medicinal properties. Dandelions were brought to North America on the Mayflower for their medicinal benefits. The entire plant, including the leaves, stems, flowers, and roots, is edible and highly nutritious, and its ground roasted roots can be used as a caffeine-free coffee alternative. Studies being done on the dandelion plant show it may have numerous health benefits such as reducing cholesterol, regulating blood sugar, reducing inflammation, lowering blood pressure, aiding in weight loss, reducing cancer risk, boosting the immune system, and aiding in digestion.
Chicory has long been cultivated in Europe as a coffee substitute. Like dandelion, its roots are roasted and ground then used alone or as an additive to coffee beans. The plant was brought to North American by early European colonists. Its leaves contain significant amounts of vitamins and minerals that are also cultivated and used as salad greens. Chicory root contains prebiotic inulin, a source of dietary fiber, that research has linked to several health benefits such as improving digestive health, helping to control diabetes, and aiding in weight loss.
The carob tree is a flowering evergreen native to the Mediterranean and Middle East which produces pods that contain seeds which are harvested then dried, roasted, and ground into a powder and used as an alternative to chocolate. Unlike cocoa beans, carob pods are mildly sweet, not bitter, and do not contain theobromine, caffeine, oxalates or tyramine. They are low in fat and sodium, gluten free, high in fiber, and a good source of antioxidants. It is an excellent substitute for people who have dietary restrictions or who are looking to avoid stimulants but still want to enjoy the flavor of chocolate.
Lion's Mane Mushroom
Lion's mane mushroom is native to North America, Europe and Asia. It has been used for thousands of years in China and Japan as a medicinal mushroom. In more recent times, they are used in gourmet culinary cuisine as well as dietary supplements. Research on these mushrooms suggest that they may offer a wide range of health benefits. One study published in the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry lists the benefits by stating that lion's mane mushroom is "antibiotic, anticarcinogenic, antidiabetic, anti-fatigue, antihyperlipodemic, antihypertensive, antisenescence, cardioprotective, hepatoprotective, nephroprotective, neuroprotective, and improves anxiety, cognitive function, and depression."
The maitake mushroom is known in Japan as the 'King of Mushrooms' not only for its size but for its amazing health benefits. Maitake mushrooms are rich in bioactive polysaccharides that have well-documented immune protecting and anti-tumor properties. The beta glucans in maitake may help reduce cholesterol and lower the risk of heart disease, lower blood glucose levels, and boost the immune system. Maitake mushrooms are gluten, fat and cholesterol free, are low in calories and sodium, as well as being a good source of antioxidants, beta glucans, vitamins B and C, copper, potassium, fiber, minerals, and amino acids.
The ancient Mayans planted the breadnut tree 2000 years ago as a staple food crop for their people. They utilized every part of the tree including its bark, leaves, and nuts. The maya nut, also referred to as ramon, capomo, or breadnut is not actually a nut, but a drupe, which is any fruit consisting of an outer skin, a pulpy middle layer, and a woody inner shell enclosing a single seed. Maya nuts are packed with nutrients such as potassium, fiber, calcium, iron, antioxidants, zinc, protein, and vitamins A, B, C, and E. When they are roasted and ground into a powder they can be used as a drink similar to coffee having a nutty, mocha-like flavor. The ancient Mayans were drinking this brew long before the Spaniards brought coffee to the Americas.
MCTs, or medium chain triglycerides, are a type of fatty acid that can be derived from coconut oil. MCTs are metabolized differently than the long-chain triglycerides (LCTs) found in most other foods. MCTs travel quickly from your gut to your liver as they do not require bile to be broken down. Since MCTs enter your cells without being broken down they can be used as an instant source of energy. However, if the body has a shortage of carbohydrates, such as when being on a ketogenic diet, MCTs can be converted into ketones that can pass through the blood-brain barrier, making them a source of energy for your brain cells. MCT oil may have other health benefits as well. Some studies have shown MCT to improve blood sugar levels, reduce cholesterol, aid in weight loss, reduce inflammation, improve gastrointestinal health and increase endurance.