Superfood Maca Pumpkin Spice Snack Bites
These simple and healthy no-bake energy bites are perfect for easy snacking on-the-go! They’re packed with fall flavor, filling protein and fiber, and the hormone-supporting superfood maca.
Note: This post is sponsored by iHerb though all thoughts and opinions are of course my own. I love partnering with this fantastic company and longtime Body Unburdened sponsor. Thank you for supporting the companies that make the work I do and this website possible!
What’s better than a delicious, no-bake, bite-sized treat that’s made with healthy ingredients…!?
One that also packs the punch of a powerful superfood that’s been used to support hormonal health, energy, mood, and skin health for centuries.
We’re looking at you, maca!
What is maca?
Maca is a tuber or root like a radish that grows exclusively in the Andes mountains of Peru.
It has a distinct nutty, earthy, almost sweet taste.
Maca may help support healthy hormones, mood, and skin
MACA AND HORMONAL HEALTH
Maca supports healthy hormones by way of helping to nourish and stimulate the hypothalamus and the pituitary glands. Located in your brain, these glands have a very important job.
Your hypothalamus is known as the control center for most hormones made in your body. It tells the pituitary gland what do, which in turn produces hormones that direct the thyroid, ovaries, and adrenal glands.
MACA AND MOOD
Maca contains flavonoids, which are known to improve mood and reduce anxiety. A few studies even found that maca may reduce feelings of anxiety and depression.
MACA AND SKIN HEALTH
Aside from being rich in antioxidant flavonoids, maca root also supports the body’s super antioxidants glutathione and superoxide dismutase. Antioxidants fight aging free radicals, keeping skin healthy. (source)
Some studies also suggest that maca may help to protect skin from sun damage. (source)
And maca’s potential to support hormonal health and lift our moods also benefits the skin! Hormones wield tremendous influence over the skin, and the rumors are true: stress ages us and stress acne is a very real thing.
Maca is one of my favorite superfoods to support healthy, clear skin from within.
It joins the ranks of other superfoods and supplements like…
Astaxanthin: This vibrant carotenoid antioxidant not only protects skin from aging free radicals but also has been shown to protect from from sun damage from the inside out. (source)
Tip: Be sure to take a supplement (like the Lake Avenue Nutrition astaxanthin pictured here) with a meal containing fat for best absorption.
Probiotics: Though it may not seem like a likely connection at first, gut health plays a significant role in the health and appearance of the skin, and probiotics are a wonderful way to support a healthy gut microbiome.
Tip: Be sure to look for a probiotic supplement with at least 10 billion bacteria and six different bacteria strains, like Lake Avenue Nutrition’s Ten Strain Blend with 25 billion CFU.
Collagen: Dietary collagen is a great way to provide skin with all the essential amino acids it needs to build, protect, and repair. It’s no wonder why studies have found that supplemental collagen improves skin hydration and elasticity.
Tip: Some collagen powders like California Gold Nutrition’s Collagen Up also include vitamin C and hyaluronic acid for further skin support.
NAC: NAC is a necessary precursor to glutathione, the body’s master antioxidant that can’t be obtained through diet (and supplementation is near impossible as well). NAC plays a critical role in the methylation process and is key for liver health, detox, and the anti-inflammatory process.
Cod liver oil: Fish oil is a rich source of EPA and DHA, the two anti-inflammatory omega-3 essential fatty acid molecules the body needs in order to anti-inflame. It’s also a rich source of the antioxidant vitamin A.
Tip: A supplement that contains natural flavoring like Oslomega Lemon Norwegian Cod Liver Oil is much more palatable!
These superfood Maca Pumpkin Spice Energy Bites are a delicious way to sneak more maca in your diet!
Plus they’re filled with plant-based protein, healthy fats, and fiber to keep you satiated and balance blood sugar levels, key for hormonal balance and skin health.
Makes 18 1-inch bites
Key ingredients conveniently linked to iHerb so you can quickly fill up your cart and get cooking!
- 10 organic Medjool dates
- 1/2 cup + 1 tbs California Gold Nutrition organic 3-seed blend
- 3/4 cup organic pecans
- 1/4-1/2 cup pumpkin puree* (not pumpkin pie filling)
- 2 tbs California Gold Nutrition organic maca root powder
- 3 tsp organic cinnamon
- 1/4 tsp sea salt
*Pumpkin purees differ in consistency. If your pumpkin can be easily poured, use less (1/4 cup) or add an extra 1/4 cup seed blend to help balance things out.
You’ll also need a food processor.
- Add 1/4 cup pecans and 1 tbs seed mix to the food processor. Process for 15-20 seconds, then set aside for later.
- Add 1/2 cup pecans to the food processor, and process for 15-20 seconds.
- Add 1/2 cup of the 3 seed blend, maca, cinnamon, and salt to the pecans, and process for 5-10 seconds to mix evenly.
- Add the dates, and process for another 20-30 seconds or until the dates are completely chopped.
- Add the pumpkin puree, and process for another 20-30 seconds or until a consistent “dough” forms.
- Roll the dough into 1-inch balls.
- Roll the balls into the dry pecan and seed blend from step 1.
- Place in the refrigerator for at least two hours to set and firm.
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