No Bake Energy Bites With Chlorella

By: Brandi Black, RHN

Ingredients 

15 medjool dates, pitted
1/2 cup unsweetened shredded coconut (optional for extra to roll the balls in)
1 cup raw cacao powder
1 tsp (3g) Sun Chlorella Powder
1 tbsp Sun Wakasa Honey Plus (optional) or raw honey
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
1 tbsp melted coconut oil
pinch sea salt

Method

1. Soak dates in room temperature water for 15 minutes before making recipe to soften.
2. Place dates, coconut oil and coconut in food processor or Vitamix blender and process until a smooth sticky "batter” starts to form.
3. Blend in honey and vanilla extract.
4. Add cacao powder and sea salt and blend until thoroughly combined.
5. Mix in Sun Chlorella Powder. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
6. Scoop out mixture by the spoonful and with clean hands, roll into medium sized balls. Place balls on parchment paper and refrigerate for approximately 2 hours. Optional to keep refrigerated or store in the freezer.

Eat any time you need energy, or want to provide your body with optimal nutrition!

Chlorella Cacao Energy Balls 

Coffee is one of the most popular morning and mid afternoon pick me ups. But what if there was a more efficient way to get your energy levels back up when you begin to hit a slump?

I personally don't believe there's anything wrong with a cup of fair trade organic coffee every once in awhile. In fact, high quality organic coffee can actually provide the body with antioxidants . But when you become reliant on drinking coffee or eating sugar for energy each day, your body becomes dependent on a form of "fake” energy.

The coffee or sugar inducing energy spikes and crashes put you on a roller coaster of highs and lows. In general, stimulants such as coffee are unsustainable sources of energy. They provide you with a quick energy buzz (that usually lasts 1-3 hours) by spiking your blood sugar levels. But as the  coffee or sugar wears off and blood sugar levels drop, the buzz wears off. This is the point where you'll either reach for something sugary, another cup of coffee, an energy drink or curl up on the couch to have a nap. (You get irritable or moody at this time, too!)

Aside from energy spikes and crashes, the constant use of stimulants can negatively impact your adrenal glands (the glands above your kidneys that are responsible for controlling your body's stress response). When your adrenal glands are taxed, your body has a harder time dealing with stress and you can wind up feeling constantly fatigued. The exhaustion can create a false illusion of needing more caffeine or sugar just to get your energy levels up.

As you can see, the nutritionally sound option for adding extra energy to your day is not in the form of stimulants that create a dependency, such as coffee or sugar. Instead, plant foods are the first thing nutritionists recommend to get your energy levels to soar.

The Best and Worst Foods to Eat For Energy 

Your body's preferred source of energy is in the form of glucose, which it breaks down into ATP, a usable form of energy. Glucose is a sugar molecule that's found in all carbohydrates such as fruit, vegetables and whole grains. Therefore, carbohydrates are the best foods to eat for energy.

But not all carbohydrates.

Thanks to food processing, we can eat carbohydrates in so many different forms. We can eat them in the form of whole grains such as rye or brown rice, or we can eat muffins, pasta, pastries, candy, cookies and bagels that have been made from white flour. But have you ever felt a slow, steady supply of energy all day long after eating pastries?

The most important thing to consider when eating carbohydrates for energy is whether or not they've been processed. White flour and sugar has been so heavily processed that they no longer contain an abundance of vitamins, minerals and fiber. Fiber is an important nutrient to carbohydrates because it slows down the release of their glucose into the bloodstream. Without fiber, carbohydrates digest very quickly and rapidly raise blood sugar levels. This results in an even quicker energy spike and crash, much like how coffee works.

This is why pastries, white pasta, cookies, muffins, pop and other baked goods are not considered good foods to eat for energy. Without their fiber, refined carbohydrates create the infamous energy spike and crash- not to mention they wreak havoc on your gut, strip your body of nutrients and trigger fat storage.

So, what does this leave us with? The best foods to eat for energy are real, whole plant-based foods that contain fiber. Fruits and vegetables are two of the best foods to eat for having energy that lasts all day long. Vegetables are naturally lower in sugar, but pairing fruit (which is more concentrated in sugar) with a healthy fat or protein will help slow the release of sugar into your bloodstream and provide a steady supply of energy. This means that a green smoothie blended with avocado would give you a lasting energy boost, as would a banana, bowl of berries or an apple with a handful of almonds.

Aside from fruits and vegetables, there's another amazing green superfood that can provide your body with plenty of long lasting cellular energy: chlorella.

Chlorella is a single celled green algae that's rich in fiber, vitamins, minerals, antioxidants and a unique nutrient called Chlorella Growth Factor (CGF). CGF is a critical nutrient to have in your diet if you're constantly tired or reaching for stimulants. It provides your cells with nutrients such as nucleic acids, which the body usually has to produce itself. By receiving a dietary source of nucleic acids, your body doesn't have to work as hard to produce them, which conserves your energy in the process. And the healthier your cells are, the more energy you'll have.

In addition to these nutrients, chlorella is one of the only plant sources to contain an active form of vitamin B12. Those who are deficient in B12 (most commonly vegetarians and vegans) can notice an improvement in their energy levels by consuming B12 from chlorella.

So, what better way to increase your energy levels (and health and wellness) naturally than by combining fiber rich fruit with the health benefits of chlorella? This chlorella cacao energy bite recipe will provide you with the energy you crave throughout the day and satisfy your tastebuds, too.

The chlorella cacao no bake energy bites also contain coconut oil as a healthy fat source. Pairing the natural sugar sources (such as dates, honey and shredded coconut) with a healthy fat will help slow the release of sugar into your bloodstream so that you receive slow-releasing energy, rather than a quick burst. Cacao can also have a stimulating effect, which is reduced when paired with healthy fats such as coconut oil.