Keep your New Year’s resolution going by baking up a batch of healthy granola bars — ideal for lunch boxes, post-workouts or late-afternoon energy boosts. The great thing about granola bars is that you can add whatever ingredients you like! The recipe below includes cashew butter, seeds, coconut, honey and more!
Healthy cashew butter
Cashew butter supplies important heart-healthy fats, essential amino acids and the dietary mineral magnesium. While one tablespoon of unsalted cashew butter contains 94 calories, its protein-to-carbohydrate ratio makes cashew butter a valuable snack option for anyone following a low-carbohydrate, high-protein diet.
One tablespoon also offers 10 percent of the recommended dietary allowance (RDA) for magnesium for men over 30 years old, and 13 percent of the RDA for women over 30 years old. This in turn, may help improve bone health, maintain steady heart rhythms, normalize blood pressure and stabilize blood sugar levels.
However, if you prefer, you could substitute the cashew butter for other healthy nut butters such as peanut butter or almond butter. The honey can also be substituted with pure maple syrup or rice syrup, for a vegan alternative.
The addition of seeds
Seeds are nutritional powerhouses wrapped in small packages. Pumpkin seeds are a rich source of magnesium, zinc and omega-3 fats. Ideal for both men and women, pumpkin seeds support ideal prostate health in men and menopausal symptoms in postmenopausal women. They may help you achieve a good night’s rest due to their tryptophan content, which your body converts into serotonin. On top of it all, they provide anti-inflammatory benefits too.
Sunflower seeds are an excellent source of vitamin E, magnesium, selenium and phytosterols, which help lower cholesterol. Vitamin E is so important for the body, neutralizing free radicals that would otherwise damage cell membranes and brain cells. Vitamin E exhibits significant anti-inflammatory properties that help reduce symptoms of asthma, osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis.
Store granola bars in the refrigerator for quick snacks and lunches or for after a workout — enjoy!
—The Alternative Daily