Homemade granola is an absolute pantry essential for me. Granola is one of those breakfasts that is so quick and easy to prepare while being delicious and nourishing. Making your own is the best way to go. Granola bought from the supermarket is generally high in refined sugar. Eating refined sugar at breakfast time is not an ideal situation. I talk about blood sugar all of the time because it really has such an impact on how you feel. If you eat something high in sugar, it boosts your blood sugar levels leading to a spike in energy, later followed by an energy crash. When you have a busy day ahead, you really need a breakfast that will provide sustained energy levels, helping to improve focus throughout the day.
What's Good in This Granola?
This granola is made from a combination of seeds including buckwheat, pepitas, sesame seeds and linseeds. These seeds have an enormous amount of nutritional value. They are high in essential fatty acids and amino acids (the building blocks of protein). In addition, they are also high in fibre, minerals like magnesium, manganese, zinc and iron AND are high in B vitamins. Pepitas are a really great source of zinc, which is a very important mineral for the nervous and immune system. Buckwheat is high in bioflavonoids, particularly rutin, which is actually more prominent when toasted slightly (like in this granola). Bioflavonoids act as antioxidants and help to boost immunity.
Don't be Scared of Fats
When it comes to fats, it's important to remember that they play a very important role in the body. Not only are they essential for a healthy nervous system and brain, but they also help to regulate/produce hormones.
Gone are the days where fats are considered bad for you.
There are certainly some fats that should be avoided, like trans fats present in fried, processed and packages foods. However the fats present in a dish like this granola are beneficial and nourishing.
The Impact of Gluten on Gut Health
Gluten is a protein found in grains that include wheat, barley, rye, spelt, kamut, khorasan and oats. Many people are intolerant (whether they realise it is another question). Signs of gluten intolerance include regular bloating or bloating within 3 days of eating gluten, flatulence, bowel irregularity (often constipation but also diarrhoea), stomach pains, cracks around the lips or a sore or itching backside (sorry, had to go there). I know, I know. You're thinking, wait, weren't we just talking about breakfast and now you're all poo and backsides. Well, I am sorry, really I am. But you see, gut health is at the very centre of our health. If we don't have good gut health then we can't break down our food properly, leading to nutrient deficiency. Not to mention what harbouring too much bad bacteria can do to our health.
This granola is great for gut health as it contains no gluten, dairy or excess sugar. This means that it promotes the growth of good bacteria, promotes bowel regularity and improves digestion of nutrients. Winning.
The Benefits of Eating Mindfully
Eating mindfully means putting aside enough time so that you can sit and properly enjoy your meal. Being present while eating a meal and not rushing to finish means that you can chew your food more effectively and feel calm while doing so. When you eat while stressed and don't chew properly, it leads to food not being digested properly. As we discussed earlier, this means that the amazing nutrients in your food aren't being metabolised and used to their full potential. This granola is perfect for busy mornings, when there is not much time for preparing breakfast. It takes 2 minutes to put some fruit, yoghurt and granola into a bowl, leaving more time to sit and enjoy eating it.
Now it's time for me to go and mindfully watch Outlander (because that's good for my health right?).
- 2 cups buckwheat groats
- ½ cup pepitas
- ½ cup sunflower seeds
- ½ cup sesame seeds
- ½ cup shredded coconut
- ¼ cup linseeds
- 2 tbsp pure maple syrup
- 3 tsp vanilla essence
- ½ cup extra virgin coconut oil
- Preheat oven to 180 degrees Celsius.
- Add all dry ingredients to a medium sized bowl.
- In a small saucepan, add coconut oil, maple syrup and vanilla essence. Bring to a low heat and stir until coconut oil is melted.
- Pour coconut oil mixture over granola mix and stir to combine. Once the granola mix is evenly coated, transfer to two baking trays, spreading out evenly.
- Place trays in oven for 15 minutes.
- After 15 minutes, remove from the oven and allow to cool completely before spooning into an airtight jar for storage.