This is the companion menu for my previous blog post, What Happens in Vagus Doesn’t Stay in Vagus. In it, I discussed how the vagus nerve sends its “rest & digest” and anti-inflammatory signals using a neurotransmitter called acetylcholine. As you might have gathered from the name, choline is a major component. The body cannot produce choline, so it must come from your diet. The “acetyl” part comes from acetyl coenzyme A. This is produced when we metabolize dietary fats and sugars. Keeping this metabolic pathway humming along requires carnitine (found primarily in animal foods), vitamins B1, B2, B3, chromium, lipoic acid and Co-Q-10.
So I designed this menu to feature choline-rich foods such as eggs, chicken, peanuts, cod and broccoli. Frankly, if you want a megadose of choline, beef liver is your best bet but I know that it isn’t in everyone’s top 10, or even top 40, so I didn’t feature it here. I would be remiss, however, if I did not mention that beef liver is one of the most nutrient-dense foods out there so you might want to consider developing a taste for it (and always buy organic when it comes to liver). I also designed the menu so that it meets the daily requirements for vitamins B1, B2 and B3 (in fact, it has double the B3) and to include foods containing the other nutrients mentioned.
Below, I shine the nutritional spotlight on eggs and broccoli. But the key is to eat a variety of quality, whole foods with a rainbow of vegetables. Or, as Dr. Navaz Habib said in his book, eat “green, clean and lean”!
And do as the man pictured above does! Okay, maybe the hand mudra is a bit much but the best way to get into “rest & digest” mode is to take some time to breathe deeply and be present while you are eating!
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Rest & Digest Menu
Breakfast: Spinach & Goat Cheese Omelette (enjoy an orange on the side and it will contribute vitamins B1, B2 and B3)
Lunch: Chicken, Broccoli & Apple Slaw with Peanut Sauce (whip this up in no time using PC Organics Broccoli Slaw – leftovers store well for 3 days)
Dinner: Coconut Cod Tacos with Mexican Black Bean Salad (this dinner alone has 22 grams of fibre to feed the good bacteria in your gut)
Join The Nutritional Reset community here to receive this month’s menu today (as well as each month to come)! And read on for some nutritional tidbits about a few foods featured in the recipes…
A few featured foods
For years, experts were scrambled on whether or not eggs were a healthy food. Lately, opinion has turned sunny-side up! Eggs are now nature’s multi-vitamin, providing 13 essential vitamins (with all the B-vitamins) and minerals. They have a starring role here because egg yolks are very rich in choline. Just one egg provides around one-third of your daily requirement, along with 6 grams of quality protein for only 77 calories. So go ahead, have eggs instead (pastured are best)!
Broccoli is one insanely healthy food for all kinds of reasons! Given limited space, I will highlight only that it is one of the few non-animal significant sources of choline at 63 mg per cup (chicken breast has 73). And it is an excellent source of chromium. One cup provides 53% of the daily recommended intake. Broccoli is also a good source of vitamins B1, B2, B3 and even Co-Q-10! Be sure not to waste the stalks – trim the outer edges and cut them like carrot sticks. Yum!
Cooking your own food is the single most impactful step you can take to improve your health and energy!
I hope you enjoy this Rest & Digest Menu. Sign up here to receive the download link for my latest Menu of the Month. And if you want to cook more of your own food but don’t know what to make or have the time to organize your own menus and shopping lists, The Nutritional Reset offers a meal planning service. It makes preparing tasty, nutritious meals a snap. Click here to find out more.