5 Simple Food Hacks

Grow, freeze, and eat broccoli sprouts.


Broccoli sprouts are rich source of glucoraphinin, a precursor to sulforaphane, which is the most potent naturally occurring Nrf2 activator known. Nrf2 activation is important because it helps our body react to cellular stress by mediating an antioxidant response element signaling pathway which modulates carcinogen metabolism, affects cancer development, upregulates of endogenous antioxidant production, and many other functions (R, R2). After 3-5 days of growing, your sprouts are ready to harvest (here’s how to grow them). But instead of eating them raw, you may want to freeze them to break down their cell walls which activates the enzyme myrosinase and converts glucoraphanin into sulforaphane and increases their sulforaphane content by around 350%! I learned this health hack from Dr. Rhonda Patrick and you should definitely check out her website and podcasts. If you’re new to sprouting you can find sprouting kits online or metal lids that fit on wide-mouth ball lock jars, which allow you to easily grow sprouts at home for much less than those sold in stores. For more info on sulforaphane, check out this article by selfhacked.com.

Add fresh mustard powder to your cooked broccoli

bowl of sliced broccoli
Photo by Buenosia Carol on Pexels.com

If you’re too lazy to sprout broccoli, you can buy an automated sprouter or you can sprinkle some mustard powder on your cooked adult broccoli to get a dose of sulforaphane (R). Heat destroys the enzyme myrosinase, which is needed to convert glucoraphinin into sulforaphane. Fortunately, myrosinase is rich in fresh mustard seed. You can tell if your mustard powder is high in myrosinase if it tastes pungent and has some bite.

Cool your cooked starches

After cooking many commonly eaten starches, like potatoes, rice, beans, etc… toss these foods in the fridge overnight to create resistant starch. Cold exposure modified the starch of these foods, making them more resistant to digestion. This is a good thing because some resistant starch is then able to feed your large intestinal bacteria, beneficially modifies your epigenetics, and causes less of a blood sugar spike. If you choose to reheat after cooling, do so gently and only eat the starches warm, not hot, if you’d like to retain their modified form.

Add curry and pepper to your eggs.


The lecithin found in egg yolks aids in the absorption of curcumin , a powerful phytochemical found in turmeric (curry’s main ingredient), which has many health benefits. (check out this comprehensive article for info). Black pepper also aids the absorption of curcumin (R).

Add some coconut oil to your coffee and tea.

Coconut oil is loaded with healthy fats such as capric acid, caprylic acid, lauric acid, stearic acid, and other healthy fats which aid metabolism, boost brain function, and improve your gut microbiome. Coconut oil also helps your body absorb different phytonutrients from your diet, including the many beneficial substances in coffee and tea (R).

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