Where did the first two months of this year go? I can’t believe it’s March already! I had every intention of posting this recipe weeks ago but things got super crazy and I just kept putting it off; however, when I woke up today, I promised myself to get this crossed off my to-do list.
In case you didn’t see my Instagram account (@thefoodallergyfoodie), Brad and I got engaged in February! We are so happy and can’t wait to get married. We are in the midst of wedding planning, which has been really fun. I’ve signed contracts with several vendors and I found my wedding dress and this weekend I bought my shoes and veil. I have a cake tasting on Wednesday with a bakery that has gluten-free, vegan cakes.
In addition to planning a wedding, we are renovating our office. I’m so excited for this room to get refreshed and made into a workable space. In 2017, we embarked on some major home improvements, including taking down the wall between our dining room and family room. It opened up the space and now you don’t feel separated from guests when you are in the kitchen. During that time, the office became a room where we just plopped stuff. We have one desk, so I either share his desk by clearing a small space off of his desk, work on the dining room table, or work on the couch. The benefits of working from home is you get to be flexible, but sometimes, I just want to sit a my desk in a clutter-free room.
The goal for our new office is to have two dedicated work areas – one for Brad and his two monitors, and one for me and my laptop. Our house was built in 1926, so we have lots of shiplap; we pulled the drywall off one of the walls and exposed the shiplap. We are also building a mudroom-type bench with storage and hooks for dog leashes and coats. I have visions of productivity dancing in my head!
Lately, I’ve been reading and hearing a lot about maca root. I heard it’s great for energy and fertility so I thought I should read up on it. What I found was pretty interesting. The maca root is native to Peru and grows in the Andes Mountains. Interestingly, it’s part of the cruciferous family – the same family of vegetables that includes broccoli, kale, and cabbage. The edible part of the plant is the root, which is typically dried and made into a powder. You can add the powder to smoothies, oatmeal, and other foods. The alternative is in capsule form. You can find maca root at the vitamin store.
The scientific and nutrition world is still conducting research on the long-term benefits of maca root, so most of the information available is based on small studies.
In addition to helping with energy and fertility, here are five other benefits of the maca root:
- It’s a great source of vitamins and minerals. One 28 ounce serving contains 4 grams of protein, 2 grams of fiber, vitamin C, iron, potassium, vitamin b, and magnesium. Just be aware that one serving does contain 20 grams of carbohydrates, so if you are on a low-carb diet, limit your daily intake of maca root.
- It may help improve your mood. Maca root contains flavonoids, which have been shown to help reduce anxiety and depression. The results of a 2015 study conducted showed that maca root helped reduce depression in postmenopausal women in China.
- It may help lower your blood pressure. That same 2015 study also showed that the subject’s blood pressure went down when they consumed 3.3 grams of maca root each day.
- Helps fight free radicals in the body. Maca root is full of antioxidants, which is needed to keep these free radicals in check. Free radicals are unstable atoms that can damage your cells. They can also lead to pre-mature aging and illness.
- It may help you at the gym by boosting your energy and performance. Bodybuilders and athletes commonly use maca root as a supplement to help with building muscle. However, there isn’t any scientific research that supports this theory.
Here is a quick and easy recipe to make your own maca root energy bites. I like to make a batch and eat one or two when I need a little snack as I’m running out to the door to workout or if I don’t have time to eat breakfast.
You will need a food processor to make this recipe. I highly recommend roughly chopping the walnuts and figs before adding them to the food processor. If you don’t, then the figs will stick to the blades and it will be really hard to get the fine consistency you need to make the bites.