Blueberries and Lemon Cream
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This sweet and creamy dessert uses thawed frozen berries to create a lovely purple drizzle that is spooned atop whipped coconut cream. It’s deliciously simple and works for any time of year.
Blueberries are wonderful for our health, boasting the highest level of antioxidants found in any commonly consumed fruit or vegetable, along with a solid dose of fiber (4g per cup). But they’re not the only halo I put on this deceptively indulgent dessert. MCT-rich coconut milk (also high in vitamins and minerals), surprisingly nutritious maple syrup, and gelatin are also built right in.
Gelatin not only turns a can of coconut milk into creamy-dreamy dessert fluff, but it’s also a hidden dose of thyroid-loving goodness. Gelatin is a superstar ingredient for those of us with thyroid issues and is made up almost entirely of protein (98%) in the form of amino acids. The primary amino acid in gelatin is glycine, which is beneficial to bone and joint health, brain function, muscle recovery, liver detoxification, and gut health.
It’s important that you use regular gelatin for this recipe, not the hydrolyzed kind that dissolves in liquids (it will not create the desired gelling effect). I used Great Lakes Unflavored Beef Gelatin, which is made from grass-fed cows. (Their porcine gelatin is not made from pastured pigs, btw.) Another popular ‘clean’ brand is Vital Proteins Beef Gelatin. You can also purchase the little box of unflavored gelatin packets at your local supermarket, but be aware that it’s produced from industrially-farmed animals (cow or pig).
- Coconut products such as coconut milk contain a wide array of vitamins and minerals, in addition to healthy fats known as MCTs (medium-chain triglycerides) or MCFAs (medium-chain fatty acids). Consumption of these fats has been touted for various health benefits such as brain health, weight loss, and cholesterol balance. Coconut can also be a positive dietary substitution for refined carbs and sugar, which can diminish thyroid and overall health. Coconut milk does contain an incredibly high amount of fat (approx. 45g per can) – something to be mindful of for those watching their weight.
- Blueberries are a low-calorie, high-fiber superfood, boasting the highest level of antioxidants found in any commonly consumed fruit or vegetable. These antioxidants have far-reaching health benefits and can be particularly helpful to those of us with thyroid disease in terms of reducing inflammation and supporting memory and brain function.
- Although it’s best to avoid large amounts of sugar on a hypothyroid-friendly diet, maple syrup is one of the most nutritious alternatives when sweetener is called for. It contains up to 24 different phenolic compounds (antioxidants), which can reduce the free radical damage that leads to inflammation and chronic disease.
- Gelatin is primarily composed of amino acids/proteins, which are beneficial to skin, teeth, nails, hair, joints, bones, muscles, the liver, the adrenals, and in particular, the intestinal walls. Glycine, the primary amino acid in bone broth, has been shown to be particularly beneficial to health, including mental health and brain function. Glutamine, another amino acid found in gelatin, has been shown to help repair fissures in the intestinal walls (aka leaky gut).