Why are antioxidants important? Essentially antioxidants help fight free radials, which can lead to the damage of our cells (i.e. inflammation, aging and disease).
Boy, is it cold outside! And what better way to warm up than pancakes?! This delicious GF Pumpkin Spice Pancake recipe is refined sugar-free, full of plant based protein, as well as healthy fat derived from coconut oil. On the subject of fat and protein, since the days are shorter and the evenings cooler, it’s only natural that our bodies shift as well in the types of foods we crave. Say good-bye to juices, salads and smoothies and hello to more warming, hearty, comfort foods. Foods like soups, stews, sweet potatos, cooked veggies, curries, slow cooked meats, hot cacao, chaga lattes, tea and PANCAKES should be on your radar for the fall and winter months, as these foods help to keep our digestion robust, as well as our bodies primed for the cooler temperatures!
Pumpkin Spice & Everything Nice = Antioxidant Powerhouse
Cinnamon, ginger, allspice, clove and nutmeg…the magical spices that make up the Pumpkin Spice combination we all so love! Not only are these spices the epitome of fall/winter goodness, they are also powerhouses for antioxidant value. Why are antioxidants important? Essentially antioxidants help fight free radials, which can lead to the damage of our cells (i.e. inflammation, aging and disease). Read more about antioxidants and free radicals here. Now, getting back to spicey goodness.. what makes them so special is that they actually have higher antioxidant or ORAC (oxygen radical absorbance capacity) values far greater than berries and dark chocolate. So consuming spices regularly can help your body to fight disease, boost the immune system and put off the aging process…isn’t that amazing? Below are the health properties as well as the ORAC values for clove, cinnamon, allspice, nutmeg and ginger:
Clove is anti-inflammatory and anti-bacterial. It helps boost the immune system, aides colds, treats oral diseases and promotes healthy digestion. ORAC value = 314,446 (22x higher than blueberries)
Cinnamon is excellent for regulating blood glucose, which is helpful to those with type 2 diabetes. It is also useful for the common cold and influenza. Always choose Ceylon cinnamon, which is true cinnamon. ORAC value = 267, 537
Allspice is wonderful for brain health and regulating glucose and insulin. It reduces inflammation, due to it’s high antioxidant levels and is heart healthy. Used as an essential oil, allspice has been found to improve stress and mental health. ORAC value = 100,400
Nutmeg can actually aide insomnia, bad breath, brain health and circulation. Additionally, nutmeg can help digestion and makes a great addition to facial treatments, as it has many anti-inflammatory properties. ORAC value = 69,640
Ginger is amazing for the digestive system, as well as the immune system. It strengthens circulation, reduces flatulence and acid reflux symptoms. ORAC value = 14,840
Gluten Free Pumpkin Spice Pancake Recipe
It only seems right to honor the season of Autumn & Winter with the flavor of the season: PUMPKIN SPICE! In honor of this glorious, spicy deliciousness, I share a Gluten Free Pumpkin Spice Pancake recipe that is sure to tick the box for comfort food. I hope this recipe encourages you to slow down a bit and enjoy the smells and foods of the season, the falling leaves and the shifts that may be occurring with our bodies (a.k.a. the desire to sleep more).
- 1 c. chickpea flour
- 1 ripe banana smashed
- 2 scoops of collagen or protein powder
- 1 c. nut milk or coconut milk
- 3 tsp. pumpkin spice (more if you like)
- 1 tsp. organic vanilla extract
- 1 tbs. maple syrup
- 1 pinch sea salt
- 1 tsp. maca powder (optional)
- 1 tbs. coconut oil for greasing
- 1 tbs. almond butter (for topping)
- 2 tsp. ground flaxseed (for topping)
- 1-2 tsp. maple syrup (for topping)
Combine chickpea flour, mashed banana, collagen or protein powder, pumpkin spice, vanilla, maple syrup, sea salt, maca and nut milk until a pancake batter forms. Add more milk if your pancakes are too thick. (It will depend on how much protein powder you use). Heat a non-stick skillet to medium and pour your pancake batter into round circles. Let cook until bubbles form on edges of pancake, then flip and cook until golden brown. Place 2-3 pancakes on a beautiful plate, spread 1 tbs. of your favorite nut butter on warm pancakes, sprinkle 2 tsp. ground flax, add some berries or 1/2 banana and 1-2 tsp. of maple syrup. Voila! Gorgeous, healthy and delicious pancakes!
In divine health,