In our Nutrient Hunter Compass there is an entire column that we’ve named “Boosters”. This column is in the compass to encourage and remind you to add extra nutritious foods to your meals and boost the nutrition just a bit more. To put it simply, you can boost the nutrition of any meal even if it consists of frozen meatballs and macaroni with the help of a booster.
So, what are Boosters? Well, things like the following are some of our favorites.
Lactic acidic vegetables are vegetables that have been able to form their own acid by means of the lactic acid bacteria found naturally on the vegetables and thereby increase the amount of good bacteria. It is a preservation method that extends the sustainability of the vegetables due to the living bacteria creating an acidic environment and preventing bad bacteria from growing. For some it can be an acquired taste but we are definitely on the thumbs-up team.
Not everyone is eager to start fermenting at home themselves, in that case you can just buy ready-made sauerkraut or kimchi in the cold section of your grocery store. Just remember to choose fermented vegetables from the refrigerator and not the pasteurized ones from the shelves! Pasteurization means that many of the beneficial bacteria can be killed. Sometimes we put a spoonful of fermented foods in our smoothies but usually we just add 1-2 tablespoons to a meal. You can ferment many different vegetables, and some of our favorites are cabbage, beets, carrots and kimchi.
Quinoa, buckwheat and mung beans are healthy all on their own, but did you know that they will be even more healthy if you eat them sprouted? Sprouted seeds and grains have an extra high nutrient density and, just like soil grown vegetables, plenty of good bacteria. They are therefore a perfect pick for a nutrient hunter who wants to boost their nutrition to the next level.
Here we have written a whole post about our favorite things to sprout. Just as with fermented foods you can buy ready-made sprouts in the store, but if you’ve got the time it is super simple and cheap to do it yourself, plus kids think it’s fun (here you have a superb step-by-step guide on how to do it). The biggest advantage of sprouting yourself is probably the flavor! Homemade tastes much better, plus you can try so many other kinds than what is typically available in the store.
Since algae does not really belong in any of the other columns in the Nutrient Hunter Compass, they end up here. Algae are very nutrient-dense – full of vitamins, minerals, proteins and several varieties contain Omega-3. In addition, they are climate smart! They do not need to be watered or fertilized as with crops growing on land, and cultivation of algae can actually counteract eutrophication and algae blooms as they absorb phosphorus and nitrogen. Go algae!