7 Essential Foods to Refresh Your Health

Hey guys! I hope you've been checking out Nutritiously Natalie's plant-based recipe posts for us, because let me tell you — they are bomb!! As you know, Natalie's been a good friend of mine for a long time, so I was beyond excited to get together with her and learn all about the essential ingredients to refreshing my health and updating my kitchen cabinets! Check out the video above to hear Natalie's inspiring story, all the dirty clean deets about your new 7 go-to ingredients, and check out more in-depth info below! Let's all get clean and healthy together! Yaaaaaas.

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Your 7 Essential Ingredients:

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1. Beans and Lentils

What they are: Complex carbohydrates that are rich in key vitamins and minerals like iron, calcium, magnesium and potassium. They're also packed with fiber and protein. How you use them: You can roast up some chickpeas to put on top of a salad, or use lentils to make lentil and walnut taco "meat." MrKate_2016_Q1_NutritiouslyNatalieFood (19 of 31)

2. Quinoa

What it is: A complex carbohydrate that's gluten free and a complete protein that's loaded with magnesium and iron. Whoo! How you use it: Cooked and chilled before thrown in with a salad, with some beans or lentils, soup, or almost any meal! MrKate_2016_Q1_NutritiouslyNatalieFood (22 of 31)

3. Nuts and Seeds

What they are: A wonderful source of healthy fats that pack a ton of fiber, protein, omega-3 fatty acids, vitamins, minerals, and even have some magical antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. How you use them: In DIY trail mix, which is the perfect quick and healthy snack, homemade nut butter, or even vegan cheese! Raw cashews lend themselves amazingly to vegan ricotta cheese and sour cream, like in the Lover's Lasagna! MrKate_2016_Q1_NutritiouslyNatalieFood (25 of 31) almondmilk-mrkate-handlettering MrKate_2016_Q1_NutritiouslyNatalieFood (24 of 31)

4. Almond Milk

What it is: A dairy substitute that actually has more calcium than normal milk! How you use it: In smoothies, sweet treats, and even in Natalie's recipe for baked mac and cheese. MrKate_2016_Q1_NutritiouslyNatalieFood (28 of 31)

5. Tumeric (top left)

What it is: A spice that's been used in Indian recipes and for Ayurvedic medicine for thousands of years. It has a ton of health benefits since it has anti-inflammatory and anti-oxidant properties. It's also Natalie's favorite spice! How you use it: Sprinkled on salads, nourish bowls, soups, sandwiches, and in the tumeric milk we make in the video!

6. Spirulina (top right)

What it is: A natural blue-green algae that is grown and harvested underwater that is a complete protein. It is rich in a lot of necessary nutrients like iron, calcium, magnesium, selenium, and B vitamins, and has a lot of chlorophyl as well, which is good for cleansing your blood! How you use it: Smoothies like Natalie's beautiful and yummy Survivor Smoothie!

7. Nutritional Yeast (bottom right)

What it is: A total superfood and plant-based staple! It is not actually an active yeast, but it is naturally gluten free, rich in folic acid, fiber, protein, and high in B vitamins, which are bueno for the production of red blood cells and an A+ nervous system. How you use it: Known for its cheesy flavor, it's used a substitute in meals like macaroni and cheese, pizza, or breakfast plates!

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