chia seeds

Raw cacao truffles

raw cacao truffles

These raw cacao truffles are naturally sweet and fudge-like, making them a perfect sweet treat or mid-afternoon pick me up.

The best thing about them is that they’re made from Omega-3-rich walnuts and fiber-packed dates and chia seeds. Walnuts are a pregnancy superfood because they’re packed with plant-based protein and Omega-3 fatty acids, which are essential for your baby’s developing brain.

The fiber in the dates and chia seeds are also a pregnant mama’s best friend. Fiber promotes digestive health and helps keep you “regular” during pregnancy.

You can easily make a batch and store the rest in your fridge for up to a week. This recipe makes about 12 small truffles – but you can make more or less, depending on the size you prefer.

What you need

1 1/2 cups raw walnut halves or pieces

1 cup pitted Medjool dates

1/4 cup cocoa powder

1 tbsp chia seeds

1 tbsp coconut oil 

1 tsp vanilla extract

1/4 tsp sea salt

What to do

1.     Soak 1 cup of Medjool dates in a bowl of warm water for 1 hour. This will soften the dates and make them easier to blend.

2.     Place the walnuts in a food processor, and grind so you have fine walnut flour.

3.     Add the dates, cacao powder, chia seeds, coconut oil, vanilla extract and sea salt to the foodprocessor. Process again so you have an even, sticky mixture.

4.     Scoop 1 tablespoon of the mixture at a time into your hand and roll into a ball.

5.     Roll each cacao truffle onto a plate of cacao power to “dust” it. Feel free to skip this step if you think the extra cacao powder is too bitter.

6.     Place the cacao truffles into a container lined with parchment paper. Store them in the fridge for up to a week or enjoy straight away!

Green coconut water smoothie

green coconut water smoothie

This is a great smoothie to get an additional serving of greens throughout your day. You can easily sub kale for spinach, but I prefer spinach because it has a “smoother” taste to raw kale.

Coconut water is rich in potassium, calcium and magnesium. In fact, one cup of coconut water has more potassium than a banana, which is especially important for pregnant mamas suffering from muscle cramps. Potassium and magnesium in both the banana and coconut water will help restore electrolytes and mineral imbalances and reduce the severity of cramps.

I got so many leg cramps in my second trimester because it was summer in NYC and I was sweating (a lot!). To help replenish my electrolyte levels, I started drinking a coconut water almost every day – or I would make a green smoothie with coconut water and banana in it. It worked wonders and I got a lot less muscle cramps.

Coconut water also has lots of electrolytes so it’s great to rehydrate after a workout – and it's a healthier option to sports drinks because you get a natural source of electrolytes without added sugars or artificial sweeteners.

What you need

1 cup coconut water

1 (large) handful of spinach

1 handful frozen mango

½ frozen banana

½ cup ice cubes

1 tbsp chia seeds

What to do

1.     Place one handful of spinach, frozen mango and ½ frozen banana into a blender.

2.     Pour in the coconut water and ½ cup of ice cubes. Blend until smooth.

3.     Add 1 tbsp chia seeds to the blender and blend it again to let the chia seeds move around evenly.

4.     Pour smoothie out into your favorite glass and enjoy! 

Banana, chia + nut butter toast

bananachianutbuttertoast

Especially, in the first few weeks of pregnancy when you feel like carbs and comfort food, this is a healthier snack or breakfast alternative to a white-flour bagel or muffin.

The protein in the nut butter will help balance blood sugar levels, to help prevent nausea. Even if you're not battling with morning sickness, the protein will also keep you full for longer.

Meanwhile, the chia seeds are a great source of fiber to keep you regular 😉  and DHA Omega 3 fatty acids are a great way to boost your baby's brain development. 

The key step to making this a healthier choice, is to choose whole-wheat bread rather than white bread. Unlike white bread, whole-wheat bread has fiber and some nutritional value because the grain hasn’t been stripped of its outer bran layer where all the nutrients are. It's the fiber in the grain that will prevent insulin spikes. This is key to avoiding accelerated weight gain, even if you’re not pregnant. 

Oh, and beware of bread or bread products that have “wheat flour” instead of "whole wheat flour". Wheat flour is just another name for white flour… so sneaky!

What you need

Whole-wheat bread (an even better option is sprouted whole-wheat bread like Ezekiel)

Peanut or almond butter

1 banana, sliced

1 teaspoon of chia seeds

What to do

1.     Toast your bread. While you’re waiting, slice that banana.

2.     Spread your nut butter of choice on your bread.

3.     Arrange the banana coins on your toast, sprinkle chia seeds and enjoy!