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You're Not Dense, But Your Food Should Be!

By Adam Galuszka
December 3, 2015

Nutrient density refers to the amount nutrients and macronutrients in certain foods compared to the calories found in the food - so it is the ratio of nutrients to calories. In general, highly nutrient dense foods contain a large amount of nutrients and relatively few calories. Whenever possible, we recommend that you create your meals with nutrient dense foods. It doesn’t stop with your main meals, it’s great if your snacks are nutrient dense as well. With nutrient-dense foods, you are get more bang for your buck. You get vitamins, minerals, healthy fats, and complex carbohydrates without consuming empty calories. Empty calories are calories that do not offer any nutritional benefit - think cookies, brownies, pizza and ice cream. Real, unprocessed food is your best bet when looking for nutrient density, but sometimes you’re looking for the next best option. When in a pinch or on the go there are some great nutrient-dense products ranging from breakfast options to snack options. Some great nutrient-dense whole foods: -Salmon -Collard greens, kale, swiss chard -radishes, turnips, and carrots -edamame, pinto beans -flax seeds, sesame seeds, sunflower seeds -cranberries, blackberries, strawberries Whether you are on-the-go or cooking a meal at home, strive to fill your plate and your belly with nutrient-dense foods. Some great examples of nutrient-dense foods while you are on the go:

Perfect Bar:

Perfect Bars are unique because they’re best consumed cold and need to be refrigerated. The advantage to the athlete is that Perfect Bar can use different ingredients and healthy oils in a bar that is produced with a focus on freshness and taste before extending its shelf life. The result is a “perfect bar” that doesn’t taste anything like what you’ve tried before. With a base of freshly ground peanut or almond butter, Perfect Bar sweetens their bars with just enough pure organic honey to satisfy your sweet-tooth, without adding low cost sweeteners like high fructose corn syrup or maltodextrin. They also add high quality protein and a mix of 20 organic super-foods to make this a complete meal replacement option.

WholeMe Bar:

The WholeMe Bar is one of the most delicious things we’ve tasted outside of our favorite local bakeries. WholeMe already makes fantastic granola, so it comes as no surprise that the WholeMe Bar is so good. The bar is baked, gluten free, grain free, and sweetened without processed sugars. This is a delicious snack or dessert that you can eat anytime of the day. WholeMe refuses to use preservatives in making this product, so it must be refrigerated upon receipt. We’re going to list the ingredients below, but we like what’s in this bar so much, we think it’s important to list them twice! Ingredients for the “DateMe” flavor: Dates, pecans, eggs, almonds, coconut oil, pure vanilla extract, baking soda, and salt.

Seven Sundays Muesli:

Hannah and Brady, the founders of Seven Sundays love breakfast. Their company was born from an incredible experience in New Zealand, enjoying fresh muesli each morning before a day of adventure. Hoping to capture that feeling in a bowl, they started their own company, creating delicious and wholesome muesli to kickstart everyone’s day. The ingredients are all natural, with no chemicals or additives. Each mix is the perfect blend of complex carbohydrates, protein and fiber to give you some serious energy. A staple in many European athlete’s diets, muesli begins with grains like oats, barley and rye that are hand-mixed with a host of other delicious goodies like pecans, almonds, pepitas, coconut, apples, flax seeds, raisins and honey, and then toasted to perfection. Each mouthful is loaded with crunch and flavor, as well as essential nutrients your body needs to perform its best. Enjoy it with milk or yogurt, boil it on the stove like traditional oatmeal, or just eat it by the handful straight from the box.

Epic Bites:

EPIC Bites are the next-level jerky that you didn’t even know you were missing. Created by combining whole animal muscle meat with flavor-forward spice combinations, the soft, pillow-y strips of meat are insanely satisfying. The high-quality meat is mixed with superfood seeds and fruit for. These savory bite-sized energy bombs are a perfect option for those looking for delicious and nutritious protein on the go. EPIC Bites are rich in protein, low in sugar, gluten-free, grain-free, and absent of both soy and dairy. Bison, Beef, Bacon, and Chicken, we can hardly pick a favorite. You might be skeptical, but these morsels do NOT disappoint!