From Our Manitoba Harvest Hearts to Yours....

There is something about summer that makes us feel just awesome. We seem to wake up happier and spend more time with a smile on our face throughout the day. We’ve rounded up 5 Reasons Why Summer Puts Us in a Feel-Good Mood, so take note and get ready to start feeling great! 

1.) We Spend More Time Outside
Sometimes nothing makes you feel better than being outside and getting some fresh air. Spending time outside can help clear your mind and relieve any stress that’s weighing on your shoulders. This summer, take some time to get outside and enjoy the beautiful weather. Take a break from technology while you’re at it and put down those phones! Life is happening now (Facebook can totally wait)! You’ll notice the sights and sounds of nature so much more when you’re not answering texts and emails.

Hemp Fruit Salad2.) We Eat More Fresh Fruits and Veggies
In the summer, there is always an abundance of fresh and in-season produce at the grocery store, which makes eating delicious and nutritious fruits and veggies even easier! Food has a direct impact on our mood and it’s true what they say, you are what you eat! Why not be a colourful and vibrant piece of fruit instead of a greasy plate of fries? Our favourite way to use up fresh fruit is in our Hemp Fruit Salad. It’s a simple and easy-to-make dessert that tastes great and is good for you. You could also make our Spicy Hemp Hummus to dip your veggies into!

3.) We Relax More
Weekend trips to the cabin are a great way to relax in the summer. Being away from the chaos of the city can be the perfect way to de-stress and unwind. Even just taking a bit of time off from work and having a stay-cation at home can make you feel better. One of our favourite ways to relax in the summer is to head to the beach and lounge in the sun, reading a good book. Our summer must-reads are Wild, A Night in With Audrey Hepburn, and Eat Pray Love. Or you could grab a copy of your favourite mag instead, we like Women’s Health and Prevention.

frisbee4.) We Get More Exercise
Instead of being forced to exercise indoors, the summer lets you take your workout to the streets! You can go for a run, take a hike on your favourite path or even just go for a walk in the park. Summer is also a great time to play your favourite sports. Get a group of your friends together to throw around a football or play a fun soccer or Frisbee game in the park! The warm weather also encourages us to walk and bike places instead of driving, which is a great way to get in some extra exercise (and reduce our carbon footprint on the environment)!

5.) We’re More Social
After spending the winter and spring cooped up in the house binge watching Netflix (Yes! We’ve all been there), it feels great to be able to get out and get social. It seems like there is never a weekend in the summer when there isn’t something fun to do. Whether it’s a backyard BBQ, a trip to the beach, or a night spent at a sporting event, summer is party time! Being around your favourite people is a great way to boost your mood and make you happy. So call up your friends and plan a get-together for this weekend!

We hope you enjoyed reading this post and that summer makes you feel as great as it makes us! What’s your favourite thing about summer? Let us know by commenting below!

CLFCS_PartnerGraphics_1200x1200_Final1Our friends at CLIF Bar are hosting the CLIF Bar CykelScramble, a totally awesome bike relay race with obstacles and other crazy stuff, on September 26 in San Rafael, California!

Anyone can sign up, just get three of your friends together and grab a bike! You’re also encouraged to come up with a fun theme for your team. The custom course with varied terrain and more than a dozen obstacles is sure to be tons of fun!

The CLIF Bar CykelScramble will also have food, super-sweet bands and fun for the whole family! To learn more or apply to ride, visit www.CykelScramble.com.

Watch the video below for an introduction to the CLIF Bar CykelScramble.

MH_Pizza-BerryKiwiHemp_Pin_2015-06-25Since tomorrow is National Vegan Pizza Day, I thought I’d whip up some yummy pizza for #FoodieFriday this week! I wasn’t craving a savoury pizza so I decided to make a vegan Berry Kiwi Hemp Pizza instead. It’s the perfect light dessert that would be great at a summer BBQ or backyard party!

This dessert requires no baking and it’s super fast to whip up. It has a crunchy chocolate base that’s topped with a coconut cream and some strawberries and kiwis – it’s delicious!

Since the pizza is served cold, the coconut cream tastes like vanilla ice cream, it’s so yummy! Plus it’s drizzled with some melted chocolate for a little extra sweetness. If you make it for your next party I suggest whipping up a couple of extra pizzas – they are so good your guests won’t be able to get enough!

You could also get creative and use whichever toppings you like. I think a peanut butter and banana flavour would be amazing too! Making and decorating these pizzas would also be a really fun activity to do with the kids once they are on summer holidays.

Berry Kiwi Hemp Pizza
Yield: 8 slices
Ingredients:

  • 1 cup pitted medjool dates
  • 1/2 cup pecans
  • 1/4 cup old fashioned oats
  • 1/4 Hemp Hearts
  • 1/4 cup raw cacao powder or cocoa powder
  • 1 tbsp coconut oil, melted
  • 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 7oz package creamed coconut, softened
  • 1 tbsp agave or maple syrup
  • 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 2 kiwis, peeled and sliced
  • 1 cup strawberries, sliced
  • 1/4 cup mini-chocolate chips

Instructions:
First, add the dates, pecans, oats, Hemp Hearts, cacao powder, coconut oil and vanilla extract to a food processor and pulse until well combined and a dough is formed. Transfer the dough to a 10-inch tart pan and evenly press down creating a crust. Set aside.

Next, in a medium bowl combine soften creamed coconut, agave and vanilla extract. Using a handheld blender, blend until well combined and smooth. Pour on top of crust. Top with fresh fruit and then melt the chocolate chips and drizzle on top. Place in refrigerator for 30 minutes until it is set. Slice into 8 pieces and enjoy!

I hope you enjoy this dessert as much as I did and that you whip it up for your next party! What’s your favourite light summer dessert?

From Our Kitchen to Yours…

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Kristina (left) and her partner Jamie celebrating winning gold!

At Manitoba Harvest we love sponsoring elite athletes who incorporate hemp foods into their training and active lifestyle. One of our hemp fuelled athletes, Team Canada Beach Volleyball member Kristina Valjas has been having an excellent season so far, which is significant since it’s the beginning of the Olympic qualification process.

Earlier this year, Kristina and her partner Jamie Broder won the FIVB Beach Volleyball World Tour Fuzhou Open 2015 in China, and earned the first women’s beach volleyball medal in Canadian history!! After that, they won bronze at an event in Switzerland, and now they are currently ranked first in the world for women’s beach volleyball!

Kristina contributes a big part of her success to maintaining her body while on the road and competing. When she’s busy travelling all over the word, she makes sure to bring along a mixture of seeds, grains and Hemp Hearts to have for breakfast. She also brings our new Hemp Heart Bites on the road with her to have as a quick and healthy snack on the go.

Here’s what Kristina had to say:
“As an athlete, I am constantly on the road, travelling for tournaments all over the world. Just this year we have been to Fuzhou (China), Lucerne (Switzerland), Prague (Czech Republic), Moscow (Russia), Porec (Croatia), Stavanger (Norway) and St. Petersburg (USA). Our environment can change week to week as we live out of our suitcases in hotels. One essential thing that I pack no matter where I go is a homemade mixture of breakfast seeds and grains that always includes Manitoba Harvest Hemp Hearts. Having a familiar breakfast that I know is packed with healthy nutrients is key to helping my body be in peak condition for competition day.” 

Congratulations Kristina! We’re so proud of you and happy that you’re #fuelledbyhemp! To learn more about Kristina, visit her hemp fuelled athlete profile on our website. Are you an elite athlete in your sport? Apply to be a hemp fuelled athlete today!

Sarah Race DayThis past weekend our Manitoba Harvest Team Member, Sarah P., laced up her kicks and ran her 7th half marathon (after running her 4th full marathon six weeks ago). With 11 ‘marathons’ under her belt (and two awesome PB races in 2015), we thought she would know a thing or two about race day gear essentials. This is what she had to say about her ‘must have’ and ‘nice to have’ essentials come race day!

Must Haves

  • Garmin Watch – I use this watch, but any Garmin will do. Garmin’s are amazing at calculating your distance, time and speed so you can ensure you’re on proper pace to get to the finish line at your goal time.Sarah Race Gear
  • New Balance Runners – This is a personal preference of course, but I can’t imagine running without New Balance runners on my feet (I just received my brand new pair of these runners). I’ve run with them since 2009 and they provide me the most comfort, support and consistency out of every pair of shoes I’ve ever owned. Every runner has their own ‘specific’ shoe brand they love, but my advice on this is when you find it, stick with it!
  • Honey Stingers – I am a HUGE fan of Honey Stingers Organic Energy Chews (my favourite flavour is Cherry Cola). They are sweetened with 100% organic tapioca syrup and organic honey (instead of all that sugar and other nasty ingredients in fruit snacks). They also don’t upset my tummy on race day (don’t forget to ALWAYS test your race day snacks prior to the actual event day). Take out your energy chews and gels on your long runs weeks before to see what works best for you (everyone is different). I like to chew on one on the start line to give my energy a kick start as the gun goes off! Then I bring a couple with me for when I need something to take my mind off of anything that might be hurting 11-12 miles in.
  • Headband – If you have longer locks, nothing can ruin your concentration more than constantly getting hair in your face. Avoid it all together by putting on a headband to instantly get those little extra strands out of the way. My two favourites are PrAna and Lululemon headbands!
  • Body Glide – No need to worry about chaffing (anywhere) with this secret weapon. Body glide is the best for avoiding that nasty rug burn look on race day. Use it anywhere you think might rub against skin or your clothing and put on as much as you want!
  • Sunglasses (especially on sunny days) – Avoid the squint on race day! Just remember to pack these with you even if it looks a bit overcast on your way to the event. You’ll be kicking yourself if you get there and it’s sunny. You can always store them in your bag instead. Be sure to actually wear sports glasses (comfort) vs. fashionable ones (that will fall off your face in less than a mile).
  • Hemp Hearts – No brainer! Throw a small bag of Hemp Hearts in your race kit bag and dip your after run banana in. This carb/protein combo will be the perfect pairing for recovery fuel.

Nice to Haves

  • Fuel Belt – I struggled with which category this falls in, as a full marathon totally requires a fuel belt. A fuel belt is great for on hand liquids and any sort of energy chews and/or gel packs IMG_0289[2]you have been training with. Plus in 26 miles you’re going to need more fuel than the half distance so putting supplies in your pockets might not cut it.
  • Pro Compression Socks – I LOVE these for a full marathon distance as they reduce any muscle inflammation and speed up the recovery process! There are tons of fun colours to choose from on the Pro Compression website (I have basic white but I’m thinking the pink ones would be pretty sweet too).
  • Ultima Replenisher – Instead of sports drinks like Gatorade or Powerade, I opt for some of these natural electrolytes made from real fruit. This non-gmo, zero-sugar electrolyte powder is perfect pre, during and post race.
  • Pace Bands – I put this in the ‘nice to have’ list because if you’re good at calculating the mile times you need to finish at your goal time during your race, then your Garmin should suffice. I’m not so good at mental math or stressing about something like this on race day so a pace band for me, is a great way to ensure I’m under the time I need to be when I hit each mile.
  • Energy Gel Pack(s) – Gel packs are great for quick energy during your race. There are tons of options and flavours out there to choose from, but I personally love Clif Shots Citrus or Strawberry flavour as they have 90% organic ingredients and 25mg of caffeine (perfect for those early a.m. races). I usually take one at around mile 8 for a half marathon and at mile 6 and anywhere between mile 14-17 for a full marathon.

And of course, don’t forget (as cheesy as this may sound) your one BIG happy smile! If you’re a runner, it’s truly a gift so appreciate the moment every stride of the way. Trust me, the more you’re present and in the moment during your race, the more you will LOVE and ENJOY the journey!

Happy Trails…

PS – Have any race day questions? Sarah would love to help! Leave a comment below and she’ll reply with her answer.

MH_SOTM_2015_06_SummerFruitExplosion_PIN_2015-06_16We love whipping up smoothies all year round, but now that summer is here we’re making them almost daily! Smoothies are a great healthy alternative to other summer drinks like slurpees and milkshakes. Plus making a smoothie is a great way to use up all of the yummy fruit that’s currently in season. Keep reading for two healthy and delicious smoothie recipes!

June’s Smoothie of the Month is our Summer Fruit Explosion – it’s the perfect cool and refreshing drink to sip on a hot summer day! It’s full of peaches, strawberries and banana, plus it’s got HempPro 70 and almond milk for some added protein.

You could also make this smoothie into a frozen treat by pouring the mixture into Popsicle molds and sticking it in the freezer for a couple of hours. We bet the kiddies would love that!

Summer Fruit Explosion
Yield: 2 Servings
Ingredients:

  • 2 frozen ripe bananas
  • 2 peaches
  • 1 dozen strawberries
  • 1 cup of almond milk
  • 2 heaping tbsp of HempPro 70
  • 3-4 ice cubes

Directions:
Place all ingredients in a blender and pulse until smooth and creamy. Pour into two glasses and enjoy!

One Minute With Marni – Green Coco-Pro Smoothie
We’ve also just launched the first video in our “One Minute with Marni” recipe series. In this video, Marni Wasserman, Culinary Nutritionist, shares our Green Coco-Pro Smoothie recipe, filled with kale, spinach, banana, coconut water, lime and HempPro 70 in Vanilla. It’s a super delicious smoothie that’s quick and easy to make!

Watch the video and let us know what you think by commenting below! You can also check out our other videos with Marni on our website and stay tuned for more “One Minute with Marni” videos coming soon!

We are so excited to bust out our favourite dresses and flip-flops and plan some awesome summer activities, now that the season is officially here! Check out this list we came up with on how to have some summer fun without breaking the bank!

  1. Go Berry Pickingstrawberries
    There is nothing that tastes more like summer than fresh, local fruit. Find a u-pick farm in your area and head there for a day of berry picking! It’s inexpensive and you’ll have lots of fresh fruit to make yummy treats with. You can also freeze the berries so they’ll last the whole summer!
  1. Have a Backyard Bonfire
    Bonfires are an essential part of summer. We love sitting around a warm fire on a cool summer night, sharing stories and laughs with our friends and family. Roast some marshmallows (we love Dandies Vegan Marshmallows) or make some of our Trail Mix Cookies to pass around the fire.
  1. Go for a Bike Ride
    Find a local bike trail and go for a ride with your best friend. You can chat while you get some exercise and enjoy the nice summer weather. Don’t have a bike? Go rollerblading or walking instead.
  1. Beautiful beach and  waves of Caribbean SeaSpend the Day at the Beach
    What’s more fun than splashing around in the water on a hot summer day? Pack up your towels, sunscreen and water toys and drive out to the beach! You can unwind by lying in the warm sun or get some exercise by going for a swim or tossing around a football.
  1. Go to an Outdoor Concert
    The summer is a great time to go to concerts since lots of places offer free outdoor entertainment. Pack a lawn chair and your favourite snacks and spend the evening discovering new local bands.
  1. Go to the Park
    Heading to the park is a great way to make yourself feel like you’re in the great outdoors even though you may be in heart of the city. You can go for a scenic walk, sit and read a book or even feed the ducks!
  1. Plan a Picnicpicnic
    Having a picnic is another fun thing to do at the park. Pack up a blanket, your favourite foods (don’t forget your Hemp Hearts) and some refreshments, then go enjoy the beautiful weather. You can go solo and spend the afternoon reading a good book or you can invite your friends and whip up a potluck style themed picnic – the ideas are endless! Try making our Broccoli Hemp Potato Salad for lunch and our Hemp Fruit Salad for dessert.
  1. Get Sporty
    There are lots of great sports you can do in the summer time. Join a baseball, soccer or ultimate Frisbee team or play tennis at your local court with a friend. Whichever sport you choose, you’ll be able to have fun while getting exercise and enjoying the outdoors.
  1. Go Garage Sale Huntinggarage
    Summer time is garage sale season! Grab a morning coffee and head to the garage sales in your neighbourhood. Maybe you can even convince your significant other to join you, as you never know what kind of treasures you’ll find! Have a contest to see who can find the best deal.
  1. Host a Games Night
    Not every summer night is hot and sunny. On a cooler evening, invite your friends over for a games night! Everyone can bring their favourite board game and you can make some delicious snacks for your guests. We bet they’ll love our Hemp Zucchini Chips with Basil Hemp Dipping Sauce and our Vanilla Almond Hemp Fudge!

We hope you plan some of these summer activities! What’s your favourite inexpensive thing to do in the summer time? Leave a comment below and let us know.

MH_Burger_VeggieHemp_Pin_2015-06-19We all love our Dads and want to make sure they stay active and eat healthy, especially as they get older. To celebrate Men’s Health Month, we thought it would be the perfect time to encourage your dad (or the father figure in your life) to start making healthier choices like incorporating hemp foods into his diet.

Since Sunday is Father’s Day, I decided to whip up some delicious burgers (one of my Dad’s favourite meals) for #FoodieFriday this week. Instead of making traditional beef burgers, I decided to try something new and make Hemp Veggie Burgers! These patties are packed with wholesome ingredients like quinoa, carrots, kale, Hemp Hearts, HempPro Fibre and hemp oil, plus they taste great!

The burgers were super simple to make, and they turned out really good. The carrots and kale added some nice colour to the burgers and the garlic powder and onions made them super flavourful. I topped the burgers with tomato, lettuce, avocado and Spicy South-West Garlic Aioli  and served them on a whole-wheat bun (but any bun of your choice would work just fine).

This recipe is a great way to introduce your Dad to healthy foods he may have never tried before. Once he tastes these delicious burgers he’ll be hooked! Dads love spending time with their kids, so instead of buying your Dad a gift this year, why not fire up the grill and invite him over for dinner instead?

Hemp Veggie Burger IngredientsHemp Veggie Burgers
Yield: 8 Burgers
Ingredients:

  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1.5 cups cooked quinoa
  • 2 cups shredded carrots
  • 1 cup finely chopped kale
  • 1/2 cup diced onion
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/4 cup Hemp Hearts
  • 1/3 HempPro Fibre
  • 1/3 cup coconut flour
  • 2 tbsp hemp oil
  • 8 whole wheat buns

Instructions:
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Whisk the eggs and salt in a large bowl. Next, add the rest of the ingredients and stir until the mixture is well combined. Then, shape the mixture into patties (about 1/2 cup each). Place the patties on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper and put it in the oven. Bake the burgers for 15 minutes and then flip each burger over and bake for another 10 minutes. Put each burger on a bun, add your favourite toppings and enjoy!

I hope you have a great Father’s Day weekend and that your Dad enjoys these tasty burgers as much I did! How do you encourage your Dad to stay healthy?

From Our Kitchen to Yours…
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At Manitoba Harvest we’re passionate about healthy living and a big part of that is staying active. We all try to incorporate different activities into our lives including marathon running, tennis, badminton, dancing and yoga. Regardless of which activity you choose, we know that there’s nothing that can boost your energy during a workout like hearing your favourite song. That’s why we complied the top workout songs from our Manitoba Harvest Marketing team into one awesome playlist!

We’re pretty sure listening to this workout playlist will get you motivated to take your workout to the next level! Enjoy!

  1. o-WORKOUT-HEADPHPONES-facebookHoney, I’m good – Andy Grammar
  2. Fireball – Pitbull
  3. Enter Sandman – Metallica
  4. Upgrade U – Beyoncé
  5. Hey Ya! – OutKast
  6. Pray to God – Calvin Harris ft. HAIM
  7. Heroes – Alesso ft. Tove Lo
  8. The Beigeness – Kate Tempest
  9. Uptown Funk – Mark Ronson ft. Bruno Mars
  10. Stronger – Kanye West
  11. We Went – Randy Houser
  12. Running Down a Dream – Tom Petty
  13. RIP – Rita Ora ft. Tinie Tempah
  14. Happy – Pharrell Williams
  15. Play Hard – David Guetta ft. Neyo and Akon
  16. Shake it Off – Taylor Swift
  17. Feel it in my Bones – Tiesto ft. Tegan and Sara
  18. Last Friday Night – Katy Perry
  19. TiK ToK – Ke$ha
  20. Can’t Remember to Forget You – Shakira ft. Rihanna
  21. Dear Future Husband – Meghan Trainor

Have another song that’s worthy of this list? Leave a comment below with your favourite workout track!

At Manitoba Harvest, we think our tasty little Hemp Hearts are pretty amazing and we want to share the Hemp Hearts love with everyone. That’s why we created our 90-Seconds on Hemp Hearts video with the help of Marni Wasserman, Culinary Nutritionist and Health Strategist.

Marni is the author of two books, Plant-Based Diet for Dummies and Fermenting for Dummies, she co-hosts The Ultimate Health Podcast, and she owns Marni Wasserman’s Food Studio and Lifestyle Shop. She’s amazing and we’re so happy that she’s a big fan of Manitoba Harvest. Marni is featured in lots of our videos, so stay tuned for more!

In this video, Marni talks about why Hemp Hearts are so great and she shares her favourite ways to add them to every meal. We hope you enjoy this video! From our hearts to yours, The Manitoba Harvest Team!

What’s your favourite way to use Hemp Hearts? Leave a comment below* and we’ll send you a free bag!

*Offer expires June 30, 2015.