News

Hydrating Summer Recipes 

Hydrating Summer Recipes 

With the change of season and warmer weather, it’s important to pay attention to hydration. Drinking enough water is essential for all aspects of health and is one of the simplest habits to pay attention to if you aren’t feeling your best. If you drink caffeine or alcohol, exercise vigorously, or live in a hot or dry climate, you might need more water and electrolytes than you think. 

Electrolytes include the minerals magnesium, potassium, and sodium, which help with hydration, allowing your body to “hold on” to the water you drink. Since electrolytes and water are lost in sweat, it’s helpful to think about replacing them in with food and drink throughout the day. 

You’ll find electrolytes naturally in mineral-rich whole foods like vegetables, fruit, and nuts. Using an electrolyte powder has many benefits and can be used on its own or incorporated into easy recipes. 

Twenty2 Nutrition Stimulant-Free Electrolytes is an electrolyte blend containing electrolyte minerals, vitamin C, vitamin B6, vitamin B12, coconut water (an excellent source of potassium), fruit, greens, and ginger. It is pregnancy safe (and helpful for morning sickness), breastfeeding safe, and kid-friendly. 

Here are some healthy recipe ideas:

  1. Strawberry Watermelon Electrolyte Popsicles
  2. Watermelon Lemonade Spritzer 
  3. Refreshing Watermelon Salad 

Strawberry Watermelon Electrolyte Popsicles

Unlike many store-bought popsicles, these popsicles contain clean ingredients and no added sugars. With the addition of electrolytes, homemade popsicles are great to have on hand for summer snacks or hydration support during labor.

Prep time: 10 minutes
Freeze time: At least 2 hours 
Servings: 6 

Ingredients
3 cups cubed watermelon, seeds removed
1 cup halved strawberries
1 scoop Twenty2 Nutrition Stimulant Free Electrolytes
Juice from 1 lime
½ cup filtered water

Directions

  1. Place all ingredients in a blender and blend until combined. Pour into popsicle molds and freeze until solid. Enjoy! 

Nutrition facts (1 serving/1 popsicle): 25 calories, 0 grams protein, 0 grams fat, 6 grams carbohydrate, 1 gram fiber


Watermelon Lemonade Spritzer 

This spritzer recipe makes a fun summer mocktail or cocktail with the added benefit of hydration support. Feel free to mix up the flavor by using your favorite berries and herbs in different combinations. 

Alcohol is dehydrating and can deplete electrolytes and other nutrients, leaving you hungover. Adding electrolyte powder to your beverage may help to counteract these adverse effects. Note that the alcohol in this recipe is optional, for an alcohol-free version, simply omit. 


Prep time: 5 minutes
Servings: 1

Ingredients
¼ cup raspberries
3 leaves fresh mint
1 teaspoon fresh squeezed lemon juice
1 scoop Twenty2 Nutrition Stimulant Free Electrolytes
Ice 
1 ounce vodka or alcohol of choice (optional)
5 ounces sparkling water
1 lemon slice 

Directions

  1. In the bottom of a wide-mouthed glass, add the raspberries, fresh mint, lemon juice, and electrolytes. Muddle with a spoon.
  2. Fill the glass with ice. Add the alcohol, if using. Slowly fill the glass with the sparkling water so it doesn’t bubble over. Top with a lemon slice. 

Nutrition facts (1 serving/1 spritzer without alcohol): 20 calories, 0 grams protein, 0 grams fat, 5 grams carbohydrate, 2 grams fiber


Refreshing Watermelon Salad 

While adding electrolytes to foods instead of beverages may seem strange, Twenty2 Nutrition Stimulant Free Electrolytes offers a sweet flavor from stevia and monk fruit that can be used to balance flavors in more savory dishes. This recipe uses the electrolytes in place of the sweetener in a salad dressing for a watermelon, tomato, and cucumber salad. 

Prep time: 10 minutes
Servings: 4

Ingredients
4 cups cubed watermelon 
1 large heirloom tomato, diced
1 small cucumber, diced
1/4 of a red onion, thinly sliced
4 cups arugula
¼ cup coarsely chopped almonds 
2 ounces feta cheese
2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh mint (or basil) 
3 tablespoons olive oil
¼ cup balsamic vinegar (or red wine vinegar or champagne vinegar)
1 scoop Twenty2 Nutrition Stimulant Free Electrolytes
¼ teaspoon sea salt
¼ teaspoon black pepper

Directions

  1. In a large bowl, add the watermelon, tomato, cucumber, red onion, arugula, almonds, feta, and mint. 
  2. In a small bowl, whisk the olive oil, vinegar, electrolyte powder, salt, and pepper until well combined. Pour over the salad and gently toss. Serve immediately. 

Nutrition facts (1 serving): 245 calories, 6 grams protein, 18 grams fat, 18 grams carbohydrate, 3 grams fiber


Paying attention to water and electrolytes throughout the day helps sustain energy in the summer heat. We hope these quick recipes offer some inspiration for different ways you can incorporate electrolytes into your summer routine. 

Morgan Snyders
Read more
Whey Protein Recipes for the Whole Family

Whey Protein Recipes for the Whole Family

Whey protein is one of the most abundant proteins found in dairy. It is incredibly supportive for athletic performance and muscle development. But you don’t have to be a bodybuilder to reap the benefits of this complete protein! Consuming whey in whole dairy foods and supplements helps:

  • Maintain muscle mass
  • Support muscle growth
  • Correct malnutrition and promote weight gain
  • Support wound healing and recovery from injury or surgery 
  • Increase glutathione, the body’s “master antioxidant”

Twenty2 Nutrition Grass Fed Whey Protein is sourced from Wisconsin cows raised on pasture. Unlike other whey proteins that may be difficult to digest for some, Twenty2 Nutrition adds digestive enzymes to increase digestibility. For those with dairy allergies or sensitivities, try collagen egg protein or vegan protein instead. 

The simplest way to enjoy whey is to mix a scoop into a glass of water or milk. However, the options don’t end there. Whey protein works well in smoothies, bars, and as a flour substitute in baked goods. Below you’ll find recipes for:

  1. Grass-Fed Whey Protein Waffles,
  2. Double Chocolate Protein Muffins,
  3. And Gut-Friendly Whey Protein Smoothie.

Enjoy! 


Grass-Fed Whey Protein Waffles

These yummy waffles use protein powder instead of flour for a higher protein, lower carb alternative to traditional waffles. The extra protein with meals and snacks helps to balance blood sugar and ward of cravings throughout the day. Try them for Sunday brunch, a post-workout snack, or an easy make ahead breakfast for weekdays. 

Prep time: 10 minutes
Cook time: 10 minutes
Servings: 4

Ingredients

2 ripe bananas 
4 eggs
½ cup almond milk (or milk of choice)
2 tablespoons coconut oil, melted 
2 tablespoons coconut flour 
1 teaspoon non-aluminum baking powder
4 scoops Twenty2 Nutrition Grass Fed Whey Protein 
Coconut oil for cooking, if needed

Optional toppings: butter, real maple syrup, fresh berries, sliced banana, almond butter, or peanut butter.

Directions

  1. Turn on a waffle iron and set it to medium; allow to heat. 
  2. In a high-speed blender, add the bananas, eggs, almond milk, melted coconut oil, coconut flour, and baking powder. Blend until smooth. 
  3. Add the grass-fed whey protein. Blend again, stopping mid-way to scrape down the sides, and then continue blending. 
  4. Brush a little melted coconut oil on the waffle iron if needed. Pour ¼ of the batter into the hot waffle iron to cook. Note that these waffles will brown more than a typical flour-based waffle. 
  5. Remove the waffle when cooked through and repeat with the remaining batter. Store cool leftovers in the fridge or freezer and pop them in the toaster to reheat. 

Nutrition facts (1 serving/1 waffle without toppings): 310 calories, 32 grams protein, 13 grams fat, 19 grams carbohydrate, 3 grams fiber



Double Chocolate Protein Muffins

Do you crave something sweet and chocolatey that also contains nutritious ingredients? Look no further than these muffins! And as a bonus: they’re much higher in protein than other muffins. A food processor makes mixing batter easy and saves on dishes. However, you could also mix the wet ingredients in a bowl by hand and then mix in the dry ingredients. 


Prep time: 10 minutes
Cook time: 12 minutes
Servings: 12

Ingredients
1.5 cup almond flour
3 scoops Twenty2 Nutrition Grass Fed Whey Protein
½ cup cacao powder
½ cup coconut sugar 
½ teaspoon sea salt
½ teaspoon baking soda
½ cup coconut oil (or 1 stick of butter), softened
¼ cup applesauce
3 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/3 cup chocolate chips

Directions

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line a muffin tin with parchment muffin liners.  
  2. In a food processor fitted with the “S” blade, add the almond flour, whey protein, cacao, coconut sugar, sea salt, baking soda, coconut oil, applesauce, eggs, and vanilla. Process until smooth, stopping midway to scrape down the sides and then mix again. The mixture will be thick and sticky. 
  3. Using a ¼ cup measuring cup as a scoop, scoop the batter into the lined muffin tin. Top each muffin with several chocolate chips and press into the batter with the back of a spoon.
  4. Bake for 12 minutes. Let the brownies cool for 5-10 minutes before eating.
  5. Store leftovers in a covered container in the fridge or freezer.

Nutrition facts (1 serving/1 muffin): 305 calories, 14 grams protein, 20 grams fat, 19 grams carbohydrate, 6 grams fiber


Gut-Friendly Whey Protein Smoothie

When you put together a smoothie, you might think about macronutrients and convenience, but a smoothie is also a great way to include gut-healthy ingredients like probiotics, prebiotics, and fiber. Probiotics, or beneficial bacteria, colonize the digestive tract and provide health benefits. Prebiotics provide the food, like fiber, that the probiotics eat.

This smoothie contains probiotics from yogurt and a probiotic supplement, prebiotics from the banana, fiber from flax seeds, and digestive enzymes from Twenty2 Nutrition Grass Fed Whey Protein. 

Pro tip: Grind whole flax seeds in a coffee grinder for maximum nutrition and freshness.

Prep time: 5 minutes
Servings: 1

Ingredients

1 banana
1/3 cup unsweetened Greek yogurt (or yogurt of choice)
1 scoop Twenty2 Nutrition Grass Fed Whey Protein
2 teaspoons ground flax seeds
1 cup unsweetened hemp milk (or milk of choice)
Handful of ice
1 capsule Twenty2 Nutrition Probiotic (optional)

Directions

  1. Add the banana, unsweetened yogurt, whey protein powder, ground flax, milk, and ice to a high-speed blender. If adding a probiotic, open the capsule, dump the contents into the blender, and discard the capsule. 
  2. Blend until smooth and enjoy immediately. 

Nutrition facts (1 serving/1 smoothie): 360 calories, 32 grams protein, 11 grams fat, 38 grams carbohydrate, 7 grams fiber


If you want to increase lean muscle, maintain strength, or get back to the gym after having a baby, incorporating whey protein powder is a smart way to support your fitness goals with your daily nutrition. Hopefully, these recipes will give you some inspiration for creative ways to use whey in your kitchen that the whole family will love. 

Morgan Snyders
Read more
How To Improve Your Gut Health

How To Improve Your Gut Health

Written by: Ryah Nabielski, MS, RDN


Hippocrates, the father of modern medicine, is credited with stating “all disease begins in the gut.” He made this connection over 2500 years ago. Modern science now proves just how right he was. 


Gut health is about more than digestion: the health of the gut influences every other system in the body. Understanding these connections and the microbiome’s role is truly a new frontier of medicine. The more we unlock the secrets gut bacteria hold, the more we understand what heals the body and promotes overall well-being


Keep reading to learn more about this important and exciting topic.
This article will cover: 

  • What you need to know about the microbiome
  • How the microbiome develops and shifts throughout life
  • How gut health connects to overall health
  • How to improve gut health, including specific gut-healing foods

Let’s dive in! 


What is the Microbiome?

The human microbiome refers to the trillions of microorganisms (and their genes) that live in and on the body. These organisms include:

  • Bacteria
  • Archaea
  • Fungi
  • Protozoa
  • Viruses 

Humans and the microbiome evolved together in a symbiotic relationship, meaning that we both benefit. We have more microorganisms living in and on us than cells in our bodies! From that perspective, we are a minority in our own skin. 

The overall microbiome includes the gut microbiome, skin microbiome, oral microbiome, vaginal microbiome, and so on. All are unique and yet interconnected. 


The Microbiome Throughout Life

We used to think that a baby was sterile inside the womb and that they received their microbiome from their mother through the birth process. While the mother’s microbiome plays a critical role in developing the baby’s microbiome, we now have some evidence that the microbiome begins even before delivery, while in the womb!

Microorganisms move from the gut, through the blood, and make their way into the baby’s body via the placenta. Even before that, some evidence suggests that bacteria are present at conception. 

While it’s always an excellent time to pay attention to gut health, supporting the microbiome throughout pregnancy may be a significant time to do so. Luckily, many women find increased motivation during pregnancy for diet and lifestyle changes. Learn what foods support the microbiome that you pass to your children below. 

Bacteria, and other organisms, are also passed from mom to baby through breastmilk. Breastmilk contains important nutrition that helps the baby’s microbiome mature, supporting immunity and development. 

If breastfeeding is not possible, many infant formulas supply certain beneficial bacteria and fiber to emulate breastmilk. In addition, infant probiotics may be supportive. 

Many studies have looked at the difference between the microbiomes of breastfed babies compared to formula-fed babies and babies born vaginally compared to those delivered via cesarian section. The more we continue to learn, the better we will be able to support all mothers and babies with targeted microbiome support. 

The basic composition of the microbiome is set early in life but also constantly changes along with environmental, nutritional, and lifestyle influences. When you make changes to your nutrition, the microbiome adjusts accordingly, sometimes in only a few days.  

Later in life, the diversity of the microbiome tends to decline, along with changes in digestion, immunity, nutrition, and more. Shifts in the microbiome influence the aging process. This connection suggests that supporting the microbiome as we get older may be one way to stay young. 


Why is Gut Microbiome Health Important? 

Everything in the body is connected. Gut health is connected to all aspects of health. 

A well-researched example is the gut-brain axis, where the microbiome and the brain communicate. Instead of the brain only signaling down to the gut, we know that the gut also sends signals to the brain, playing an essential role in brain health and function. 

A healthy gut microbiome is vital for:

  • Mood 
  • Cognition
  • Metabolism
  • Energy
  • Immunity
  • Digestion
  • Genetic expression
  • Skin health
  • Preventing infections
  • Nutrient production (such as short-chain fatty acids and specific vitamins)
  • And more

This list is likely just the tip of the iceberg as we continue to learn more.

Dysbiosis, an imbalanced microbiome, is associated with:

  • Poor digestion
  • Inflammatory bowel disease
  • Asthma
  • Obesity
  • Metabolic syndrome 
  • Heart disease
  • Eczema
  • Autoimmune disease
  • Autism spectrum disorder
  • Cancer
  • Depression and anxiety
  • Parkinson’s disease and Alzheimer’s disease

Since all systems are connected to the gut, it’s easy to see that gut imbalances may contribute to symptoms or disease. 

But luckily, the health of the microbiome is largely in our control by how we live daily. And when we focus on gut health, we improve body function


How to Improve the Microbiome and Support Gut Health 

Unfortunately, many aspects of our modern world work against gut health. These include:

  • Stress
  • Toxins
  • Antibiotics and other medications
  • Pesticides
  • Chlorine and other disinfectants
  • Too many processed, refined foods 

One way to improve gut health is to avoid or minimize these as possible while also working on the pieces within your control to improve and support the gut. 

A primary tool to heal and maintain optimal gut health is nutrition. 

Changing what you eat or even simply adding in new foods can shift the microbiome favorably in just a few days. The goal is to promote an abundance of diverse beneficial bacteria (called probiotics) and other beneficial microorganisms. 

Here is how to rebuild and optimize the microbiome through diet:

1. Eat fermented foods. Traditionally fermented foods are a natural source of probiotics, or beneficial bacteria, that help to populate the gut. These include:

  • Yogurt
  • Kefir
  • Miso
  • Sauerkraut
  • Kimchi
  • Kombucha

Consider these foods condiments and include small servings with meals at least once per day. 

Using a probiotic supplement is a convenient way to increase beneficial bacteria in the gut and the perfect complement to a gut-healthy diet. Twenty2 Nutrition Probiotic combines probiotics with prebiotics (more on prebiotics below) for optimal benefit. 

2. Eat more fiber. Fiber is a carbohydrate found in whole plant foods that we don’t have the enzymes to digest, but our gut bacteria do. Fiber is essential for the health of the digestive system, metabolism, blood sugar balance, and more.

To increase fiber, eat more whole plant foods; some that are exceptionally high in fiber include:

  • Beans
  • Avocados
  • Chia seeds
  • Apples and pears
  • Unrefined oats 

Current nutrition recommendations suggest 38 grams of fiber per day for adult men, 25 grams per day for adult women, 28 grams per day during pregnancy, and 29 grams per day while nursing. Most Americans don’t hit these targets, so increasing to these levels is the first step. Still, you can certainly go higher for additional benefits. 


If you aren’t sure how much fiber you are eating, try tracking your diet in an online app for a few days to get a ballpark amount. 

3. Focus on prebiotics. Prebiotics are components of the food we eat that provide food to the probiotics in the gut. 

Prebiotics include specific fibers such as inulin, fructooligosaccharides (FOS). Foods that contain these prebiotics include:

  • Onions
  • Garlic
  • Leeks
  • Green bananas
  • Artichokes
  • Asparagus
  • Burdock root
  • Sunchokes
  • Chicory root

Polyphenols are also prebiotics and serve as the food source for certain beneficial organisms. Polyphenols are colorful plant compounds, often with antioxidant and other health-promoting properties. Foods high in polyphenols include:

  • Strawberries
  • Blueberries
  • Cranberries
  • Blackberries
  • Raspberries
  • Pomegranate
  • Red grapes
  • Cherries
  • Cacao
  • Black and green tea
  • Coffee

Including more of these specific prebiotic foods is a delicious way to improve microbiome health. 

4. Increase minerals. Minerals are critical for health and wellness, and one reason their role in the gut. A mineral-rich diet influences microbiome health in many ways that we are only beginning to learn about, such as promoting the growth of certain microorganisms and promoting diversity among beneficial bacteria. Many of the foods already listed here are rich in minerals, as well as: 

    • Seaweed
    • Nuts and seeds
    • Meat, shellfish, fish, dairy
    • Dark leafy green vegetables

An easy way to boost minerals is with Twenty2 Nutrition Greens, which contains 9.5 servings of organic vegetables, digestive enzymes, and probiotics in every scoop. It’s one of the best products for gut health and overall health. Learn more about the benefits of greens here

If you are ready to reduce bloat, decrease inflammation, have clearer skin, and feel happier, start with your gut. An imbalanced gut microbiome may be a root cause of various health problems. As you restore gut health, overall health improves from head to toe. 

____________________________________________

Ryah Nabielski, MS, RDN is a functional nutritionist, writer, and recipe creator. Through her private practice, Ryah helps women use a natural, food-as-medicine approach to improve fertility, hormone balance, autoimmunity, and discover a healthy relationship with food and body. Learn more about Ryah at econutrition.co


References

  1. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6996528/
  2. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5962619/ 
  3. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/28346919/ 
  4. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5706746/ 
  5. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8714606/ 
  6. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/31558686/ 
  7. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/31460832/ 
  8. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6580755/ 
  9. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5787212/ 
  10. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/28096237/ 
  11. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/31144383/ 
  12. https://nal.usda.gov/sites/default/files/fnic_uploads/macronutrients.pdf 
  13. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/28219317/ 
  14. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6723656/ 
  15. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5390821/ 
  16. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6973326/ 
  17. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7071260/ 
Morgan Snyders
Read more
Easy Recipes Using Twenty2 Greens

Easy Recipes Using Twenty2 Greens

Do you have a hard time eating your greens? Or, even more likely, getting your kids to eat theirs? Well, not to fret, Twenty2 Greens is designed with you in mind. Twenty2 Greens is a powdered superfood supplement and the perfect addition to many things that you already make in your kitchen, including:

  • Eggs
  • Soups
  • Smoothies
  • Pancakes
  • Hummus
  • Muffins
  • Oatmeal
  • Energy Balls
  • Crackers
  • And more! 

Really, your only limitation with this greens powder is your imagination!


With 9.5 servings of veggies in one scoop, even adding a single scoop to a recipe is a great way to boost nutrition. Below you’ll find a few of our favorite ways to use Twenty2 Greens with recipes for our favorite Twenty2 Nutrition Green Smoothie, Green Super Seed Bars, and Homemade Fruit Gummies. 



Twenty2 Nutrition Green Smoothie


Green juice is a popular way to increase nutrients found in green vegetables, detoxification, and overall wellness. Although green juice has its place, a downside is that juicing removes the fiber from fruits and vegetables. On the other hand, blending allows you to consume the whole vegetable in an enjoyable and easy way. And reap the benefits of all the phytonutrients, vitamins, minerals, and fiber. Add Twenty2 Greens for even more nutrition in just one glass! 


Prep time: 5 minutes

Servings: 1


Ingredients

1 cup frozen pineapple 

1 scoop Twenty2 Greens

¼ of a medium avocado

1 celery stalk, cut in half

1 2-inch piece of cucumber

½ cup baby spinach (or greens of choice) 

Juice from ½ of a lime 

1 cup unsweetened almond milk (or milk of choice)

Ice (optional)


Directions

  1. Place all ingredients in a high-speed blender and blend until well combined and creamy. Enjoy immediately! 

Nutrition facts (1 serving/1 smoothie): 185 calories, 4 grams protein, 8 grams fat, 30 grams carbohydrate, 7 grams fiber


Green Super Seed Bark


This fun snack tastes sweet, has a chewy texture, and is packed with nutrition. Seeds are an important source of minerals, protein, and healthy fats to support growth, brain health, and more. By adding greens along with the seeds, you’ll increase the nutrient density of these bars in a kid-friendly way. Whip up a batch today so you have snacks ready throughout the week!


Prep time: 10 minutes

Cook time: 12 minutes

Servings: 8


Ingredients

¾ cup raw sesame seeds

½ cup raw sunflower seeds 

2 tablespoons chia seeds

2 tablespoons raw pumpkin seeds

1 scoop Twenty2 Greens

¼ cup + 1 tablespoon honey

Pinch of sea salt


Directions

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper. 
  2. In a bowl, mix all the ingredients. If your honey is crystallized, soften it for 10 seconds in the microwave before adding it to the bowl. 
  3. Spread the mixture onto the parchment paper and form together with your fingers, so it’s about ¼ inch thick. For crispier bars, spread even thinner. Note that this mixture will be sticky.
  4. Place in the oven for 12 minutes or until the edges of the bars appear golden. 
  5. Remove from oven. Allow to completely cool, about 1 hour. Break or cut into individual bars. Store leftovers in an airtight container. 

Nutrition facts (1 serving/1/8th of recipe): 195 calories, 6 grams protein, 14 grams fat, 16 grams carbohydrate, 3 grams fiber


Homemade Fruit Gummies 


Fruit gummies are a simple, kid-friendly snack to make at home. Gummies are also a great way to add supplemental nutrition to your children’s diet. For example, incorporate vitamin C powder and elderberry syrup into gummies for extra immune support in the fall and winter. All year round, add Twenty2 Greens to increase vitamins, minerals, and phytonutrients found in green vegetables. Getting your kids to eat their greens has never been so easy! 


Prep time: 10 minutes

Set time: 1 hour

Servings: 4


Ingredients

1 cup tart cherry or pomegranate juice 

3 tablespoons gelatin powder

1 scoop Twenty2 Greens


Directions

  1. Pour the juice into a saucepan. Sprinkle gelatin over the juice and allow it to dissolve for about a minute. 
  2. Place the pan over low-medium heat and allow to gently heat (do not boil), occasionally stirring until all the gelatin dissolves, about 3-4 minutes. 
  3. Remove from heat and whisk in the greens powder.
  4. Pour the juice mixture into silicon molds and let set in the fridge for 1 hour. Alternatively, pour the mixture into a glass container, place in the fridge for 1 hour. Then, slice or use cookie cutters to make desired shapes. Store in the fridge. 

Nutrition facts (1 serving/1/4 of the recipe): 65 calories, 6 grams protein, 0 grams fat, 10 grams carbohydrate, 0 grams fiber


As you can see, there are many fun and easy ways to use Twenty2 Greens in the kitchen. While mixing with water or into a smoothie seems like the obvious choice, greens can be incorporated into various snacks and meals to increase nutrition for the whole family. Let us know how you like to use Twenty2 Greens! 

 

Written by: Ryah Nabielski, MS, RDN

Morgan Snyders
Read more
Easy Snacks Using Collagen-Egg Protein

Easy Snacks Using Collagen-Egg Protein

Are you looking for a healthy snack to keep you full and satisfied? Make sure it includes protein! Protein helps to regulate blood sugar and appetite between meals. It fills you up to fuel your day. When running the kids around town or hitting the gym, focus on protein-rich snacks to keep your energy stable. Protein snacks will up-level your performance, boost your mood, and give you the energy you need to get things done. 


Collagen egg protein is a versatile protein powder that you can easily add to beverages, baked goods, and various homemade snack items. Made from grass-fed collagen and whole eggs, this protein powder provides all the essential amino acids, helping you to meet your daily nutrition needs. 


We know snacks need to be easy to make and grab to fit in your day. Below you’ll find recipes for three protein-based snacks to keep you satisfied. They all can be prepared ahead of time and utilized throughout the week. 


  1. Strawberry Vanilla Protein Smoothie
  2. Double Chocolate Peanut Butter Protein Cookies
  3. Oatmeal Raisin Energy Balls 


Strawberry Vanilla Protein Smoothie 


This simple smoothie offers big flavor and balanced nutrition for a quick, nourishing snack. Save even more time with smoothies by portioning out the ingredients (except the milk) in a freezer-safe container and storing your “smoothie packs” in the freezer. When you need a smoothie, simply dump the contents in your blender, add milk, and you have a snack in one minute’s time. Note that adding the optional greens will change the color of the smoothie.


Prep time: 5 minutes

Servings: 1


Ingredients

1 cup frozen strawberries

½ small banana 

1 scoop Twenty2 Nutrition Vanilla Delight Collagen Egg Protein

1 tablespoon hemp seeds

1 cup unsweetened almond milk 

A few ice cubes (optional)

½ scoop Twenty2 Greens (optional)


Directions

  1. Place all ingredients in a high-speed blender and blend on high until well combined. Enjoy immediately! 

Nutrition facts (1 serving/1 smoothie without optional greens): 350 calories, 26 grams protein, 13 grams fat, 39 grams carbohydrate, 7 grams fiber



Double Chocolate Peanut Butter Protein Cookies


Cookies aren’t just for dessert anymore! These cookies are low in sugar and packed with protein, making them an excellent sweet yet satisfying snack that won’t cause you to crash. Whip up a double batch this weekend and keep them on hand. You’ll be glad you did!


Prep time: 10 minutes

Cook time: 

Servings: 10


Ingredients

1 cup natural peanut butter, well stirred

2 tablespoons coconut sugar

2 scoops Twenty2 Nutrition Chocolate Vanilla Swirl Collagen Egg Protein

1 large egg

½ teaspoon baking soda

1/8 teaspoon sea salt 

½ cup dark chocolate chips 


Directions

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. 
  2. In a large bowl, combine peanut butter, coconut sugar, collagen egg protein, egg, baking soda, and sea salt. Stir to combine thoroughly. Add chocolate chips and mix in until evenly distributed. 
  3. Roll about 2 tablespoons worth of dough in your hands. Then, press down on the baking sheet. Repeat with the remaining batter until you have 10 cookies.
  4. Bake for 12 minutes, until the cookies begin to brown. Let cool completely as cookies will hold together better when cool. 
  5. Store leftovers in a covered container in the fridge or freezer.

Nutrition facts (1 serving/1 cookie): 245 calories, 12 grams protein, 18 grams fat, 13 grams carbohydrate, 3 grams fiber



Oatmeal Raisin Energy Balls 


This quick energy ball recipe comes together easily for a protein and energy-packed snack. Whether you use these to fuel your workouts or make for the kids after school, you’ll have peace of mind that you offer the very best nutrition for yourself and your family. 


Prep time: 10 minutes

Servings: 14


Ingredients

¾ cup rolled oats

1 scoop Twenty2 Nutrition Cinnamon Oatmeal Collagen Egg Protein 

1 cup almond butter

2 teaspoons coconut oil, softened 

½ teaspoon cinnamon 

Pinch of sea salt

¼ cup raisins

¼ cup chopped walnuts


Directions

  1. In a bowl, mix the rolled oats, collagen egg protein, almond butter, coconut oil, cinnamon, and salt until well mixed. Mix in the raisins and walnuts. (If your batter is dry, add additional coconut oil until you reach the desired consistency).
  2. Roll dough into 1-inch balls. Refrigerate for 1 hour before serving and store leftovers in the fridge. 

Nutrition facts (1 serving/1 energy ball): 165 calories, 7 grams protein, 13 grams fat, 9 grams carbohydrate, 3 grams fiber



We hope these recipes provide ideas about incorporating more protein, and specifically Twenty2 Nutrition Collagen Egg Protein, into your days. While smoothies are probably the easiest way to use protein powder, collagen egg protein lends itself to various other snacks, including cookies and energy balls. Let us know how you use collagen egg protein in your kitchen!
Morgan Snyders
Read more
Health Benefits of Green Vegetables

Health Benefits of Green Vegetables

Health Benefits of Green Vegetables
Written by: Ryah Nabielski, MS, RDN


Did you know that only nine percent of Americans meet their daily minimum vegetable intake? Two-and-a-half to three cups of veggies per day are needed to meet baseline nutrition requirements, but most of us fall short. Green veggies are one of the most nutrient-dense and health-promoting categories of foods we can eat but they also tend to be one of the hardest to include.


Greens may not be as convenient to eat as other foods. Some people report that greens rot in the fridge quickly, or they don’t know how to prepare them in a tasty way. Some people struggle with the bitterness and texture of green vegetables. Yet others may not realize the full health benefits of including an abundance of greens in the diet. 


Can you relate? If so, keep reading. 


In this article, we will dive into the important nutrients that greens bring to the diet and what benefits they offer to prevent disease and promote wellness. We will also cover simple tips for how you can increase green vegetables in your diet, starting today. 

Let’s dive in! 

Nutrients in Green Vegetables

Leafy green vegetables are low in calories yet packed with nutrients. Here are some of the important nutrients you will find in these foods:

  • Fiber – All whole plant foods contain fiber. Fiber is simply carbohydrates that humans don’t have the enzymes to digest. The fiber in green leafy vegetables promotes regularity, digestive function, and metabolic health. 
  • Vitamins – Dark leafy green veggies contain many vitamins, most notably folate and vitamin K. Folate, or vitamin B9, is an essential nutrient for preconception and pregnancy, promoting favorable genetic expression and development. Vitamin K is a critical nutrient for blood clotting. 
  • Minerals – Packed with minerals, green vegetables provide calcium, magnesium, and potassium, which help maintain an alkaline pH in the body. Greens are also a plant source of iron. 
  • Phytonutrients – Dark leafy greens contain thousands (yes thousands!) of phytonutrients, or plant nutrients, that cover the full spectrum of the rainbow. We can’t see most colors because the rich, green chlorophyll in plants masks the other compounds. 

For example, leafy greens are a rich source of red, orange, and yellow carotenoids that act as antioxidants, reduce inflammation, and support reproductive health. If you’ve ever had a bunch of kale in your fridge that starts to turn yellow, you’ve observed the chlorophyll breaking down to reveal the carotenoids underneath. 

While it can be easy to focus on the pieces of a particular food, remember that the whole food is greater than the sum of its parts. We can only study what we can isolate, but there are likely many phytonutrients and significant nutrient synergies within these plants that we have yet to discover. Therefore, eating the whole food is always the best strategy! 


Health Benefits of Green Vegetables


Because of all the nutrients that green vegetables provide, it’s not hard to see why they are so beneficial to multiple areas of health. We’ve already mentioned some of them, like digestive and metabolic support. Let’s look at more of these health benefits. Green leafy vegetables are associated with:


  • Reduced risk for chronic disease. Eating vegetables (and fruit) is associated with a reduced risk of heart disease, cancer, diabetes, and premature death. The total volume or servings of vegetables eaten and including a variety is important. 

  • Improved detoxification. Chlorophyll can bind to carcinogens in the body and help remove them. Vitamins and minerals found in green vegetables support liver detoxification, as do phytonutrients. 

For example, sulforaphane, a sulfur-rich phytonutrient found in broccoli sprouts, kale, and other cruciferous vegetables plays an important role in liver detoxification. Additionally, sulforaphane activates the body’s antioxidant production, protecting from damaging compounds.   


  • Immune health. Many green vegetables contain essential immune-enhancing nutrients, including vitamin C, B vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants. In addition, eating vegetables supports a healthy gut microbiome, which interacts directly with the immune system. 
  • Anti-aging. Phytonutrients and antioxidants are anti-aging compounds associated with healthy aging. Just one cup of green veggies per day slows the cognitive decline associated with aging. 
  • Improved mineral status. The modern food supply offers fewer minerals than even a few decades ago. We also have increased body needs for minerals today because of stress, toxins, processed food, and other factors. An abundance of dietary dark leafy green veggies is one strategy for improving mineral status. They are high in magnesium, calcium, and potassium, known as electrolyte or alkaline minerals, that support mineral balance and homeostasis. 
  • Happiness and well-being. The discussion of health benefits focuses on physical health, but vegetable intake is also important for psychological health. Several studies link a high intake of a variety of vegetables with happiness, overall well-being, and an improved quality of life. 

Green Foods List

Dark green leafy vegetables, also called green vegetables, or simply greens, include the following:

  • Alfalfa
  • Arugula 
  • Asparagus 
  • Barley grass
  • Beet greens 
  • Bok choy 
  • Broccoli sprouts
  • Cilantro
  • Chard
  • Chlorella
  • Collard greens
  • Kale 
  • Nettles
  • Oat grass
  • Parsley
  • Romaine lettuce 
  • Seaweed
  • Spinach
  • Spirulina
  • Turnip greens
  • Wheatgrass
  • Watercress

Recommendations for Eating Greens and How to Eat More

Government dietary recommendations are conservative and recommend a minimum of five servings of fruits and vegetables per day or around two-and-a-half to three cups. Research shows that in the case of vegetables more is better, with the most significant benefits around nine to 13 servings per day. For reference, a serving is around one cup of a raw vegetable or one-half cup cooked. 

Leafy greens are often a source of pesticide and agricultural chemical residues, a downside to modern production practices. As you are able, choosing organic greens can mean decreased exposure to these toxins. But rest assured, the benefits of eating greens always outweigh any risk. 

In addition, don’t forget about variety. It’s easy to grab the same produce each week at the store. Instead, mix it up. When you include more variety in what you eat, you’ll increase the nutrients and phytonutrients that promote the benefits discussed here. 

Here are some tried and true tips for adding more vegetables, especially greens, to your routine. 


  • Set a realistic goal. It can be hard to go from a few servings of green vegetables per week to several per day. Start with adding just one serving of greens each day to what you already eat. When you are consistent with the extra serving, expand from there.  
    1. Use convenience items. If you are busy and don’t enjoy the cleaning involved with fresh greens, opt for prewashed, prechopped, or frozen options. If green foods are convenient, you can easily add them to your meals.   

    2. Make them tasty! Vegetables don’t have to be soggy and tasteless like those you ate growing up. An easy fix here is to sauté greens in fat like ghee, olive oil, or coconut oil. Add some onions, garlic, and sea salt. Pairing greens with fat increases the absorption of the fat-soluble vitamins and phytonutrients. Greens taste better with fat and are better for you! 

    3. Seek out local options. Depending on the time of year and where you live, greens at the grocery store can look sad, old, and wilted. Local options will be fresher, hold up in your fridge, and you’ll experience subtle taste differences throughout the season. For example, greens harvested during the heat of summer may be more bitter compared to the sweet greens you’ll find as the weather turns cold. And through the winter, look for greenhouse or microgreen options.

    4. Grow your own. All you need is a planter, some rich soil, and seeds. You can grow green herbs like parsley and cilantro, baby salad greens, or spinach in a small sunny space. Involving kids in the process is a great way to open them up to eating more green foods. 

    5. Add a greens powder. Using a greens powder is one of the simplest ways to increase your veggie consumption and supplement your daily nutrition. Choose a high-quality, organic product that has been third party tested for contaminants. Twenty2 Greens checks all the boxes to ensure you are putting the highest quality greens into your body. 

    Add a scoop to your morning smoothie or mix with water to drink your veggies. A whole serving of Twenty2 Greens delivers the equivalent of 9.5 servings of veggies! 

    It’s no secret that green vegetables are good for you. We know greens are nutrient-dense and necessary for vibrant health and longevity. Yet, many of us still have a hard time committing to green foods. Pairing greens with healthy fat, finding fresh options, and supplementing with a daily greens powder are easy ways to nourish your body with solid nutrition.


    References

    1. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7770496/ 
    2. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/28338764/ 
    3. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6040059/ 
    4. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3649719/ 
    5. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6815645/ 
    6. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/28465831/ 
    7. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5772164/ 
    8. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/17658124/
    9. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4566456/ 
    10. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4940663/
    11. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6062975/ 
    12. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/29134675/ 
    13. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5658984/ 
    Morgan Snyders
    Read more
    Easy Steps to Jumpstart Your Health Goals

    Easy Steps to Jumpstart Your Health Goals

    Whatever your health goals, today’s articles will give you some ideas and inspiration for where and how to start. And spoiler alert: it doesn’t need to be a quick fix or total overhaul. Small habits, practiced consistently, build health and resilience over time.
    Morgan Snyders
    Read more