Category Archives: Nutrition

Easy and Simple; Ingredients For Better Nutrition

Easy and Simple; Nutrient-rich meals

by donR  Revised April 16, 2018

During our first class 5 years ago, Lisa Samuel ND, one of our instructors  suggested we add foods to our meals that look like they just fell from a tree, picked from a bush or just pulled out of the ground. She called them “Real Foods.” Since that day I have heard them also referred to as “whole foods,” “natural,” “unprocessed,” “unmodified.” and “non GMO'”.

It is also common to see the words “Eat The Rainbow!” which implies that meals include a variety of colorful vegetables in its natural state (as opposed to dyed) or irradiated to kill any harmful bacteria. 

Then, of course, you have the option of choosing “organic,” which assures the buyer that the food was grown without the use of harmful sprays to kill bugs, weeds, set the blossoms and prevent wilt, and fungus.

To complicate the matter of choosing which foods to serve, you need to consider what types of nutrients are present in which variety of plants.   Here we can help you decide which plants are “nutrient-rich” yet low in calories while others are high n calories with low are some examples:

  1. Grow your own leafy green vegetables in a 4′ X 4′ raised garden bed.

    Keep some leafy greens (low in calories yet high in anti-oxidents, vitamins and minerals) like kale and Romaine Lettuce in  your fridge.  Swiss Chard, which comes in a rainbow of  colors is a popular choice for salads…. Just rinse, chop and add a simple  dressing for salad or keep leaves whole and wrap one around some meat or veggies to make a roll-up.Throw in a handful of seeds and nuts for a good source of unsaturated fats & micro nutrients,  Keep leaves whole until ready to use in order to prevent bacteria from 

Blackberries are one of the richest sources of anti-oxidants.

 

2. Deep colored berries like blueberries, black berries and raspberries are full of healthy micro-nutrients that fight inflammation and attack cancer-type cells in your body. The berries can be rinsed and eaten by the handful. Better yet, enjoy a bowl of cooked steel-cut oats with a few berries thrown in. For dessert or snack, warm up the Quesadilla maker and 2 tortillas. Place a tortilla on the press, put a couple of berries in each section, cover with 2nd tortilla, and close lid to cook. Sprinkle with sugar and cinnamon. 

picture of vegetables

Having fruit and vegetables readily available for snacks is healthy and saves money.

3. A variety of colorful root  vegetables like sweet potatoes, carrots, beets and onions are cut in large chunks of equal size. Coat with a small amount of olive, sesame or peanut oil. Sprinkle with a little seasoning, place in a shallow baking sheet and cook (roast) until tender; about one hour. Root veggies and onions are a good source of vitamins and minerals while olive and nut oils are rich in good fatty acids when eaten in moderationl. 

 

 

 

Pre-schoolers made stuffed baked apples

4. kids can cut a hole to remove the apple core and fill  it with instant oats and brown sugar. Place apples on a shallow baking pan, add a cup of water to keep apples moist. Bake for about an hour to so. .Apples are rich in fiber while whole rolled oats are a natural grain.

 

 

Stuffed peppers are easily cooked in your slow cooker

We usually have extra cooked brown rice, salsa, cooked beans, mushrooms, and garlic on hand. A simple meal is made from whole bell peppers. Cut the top off the peppers and fill each cavity with a mixture of moist rice together with the other ingredients. Place a half cup of water in a large slow cooker. Squeeze up to 6 peppers in the slow cooker (1 layer) Cook on high for 2-3 hours until softened

When the above ingredients are added to meals you are offering food that are high in nutrient value and low in calories.  Next week we will include recipes for these ingredients. They can be cooked quickly and in large batches for homeless shelters and camps. stay tuned’

For more about using whole foods in your healthy meal plan read “The End Of Dieting” by Joel Fuhrman MD These foods are from his G-BOMB  list. 

Finally….. Doctors Are Recognizing the Value of Prescribing Cooking Classes for better health.

By donR     October 21, 2017

Leading a Cook-Ins is one way to help introduce healthy eating and cooking to your community.

According to Katherine Martinko in Living Health, doctors are recognizing the value of eating whole foods as a way to prevent chronic diseases. In fact, they are going a step further by supporting cooking classes, university courses, and clinics that teach patients how to cook with nutritious whole foods.

I have been fortunate to have doctors willing to discuss how my food choices could improve my health. One doctor recommended that big salads include leafy greens, above the ground vegetables, legumes, whole grains and fruit be included in my daily meal plan.

Two thousand years ago, Hippocrates said “let food be thy medicine.”  Today, doctors take the Hippocratic oath but take few curses in nutrition. It is heartening to see that they are finally following Hippocrates’ example.

A healthy diet, plus doctor prescribed medicines, can play important roles towards a healthy life.

Wonderful Winter Squash: Tips and Tricks From A Master Gardener

Winter squash is easy to prepare and a good source of vitamins A and K

Winter squash is easy to prepare and a good source of vitamins A and K

by donR November 6, 2015

Winter squash comes in different sizes, shapes, and colors and they all contain important micro-nutrients.  When I told Gloria Perez that “Winter Squash” was my topic for a presentation at the Senior Center, she said “Wonderful.” She is the master gardener for the Ferndale Friendship Community Garden in Ferndale, Washington and she then began to tell how easy and important it is to include squash in a family meal plan. Here are five of the many ‘tips and tricks’ she shared: Continue reading

Green Salad In Your Meal Plan: 10 Final Thoughts

Green salads contain many micronutrients. Add whole grains, legumes, nuts and seeds for even more variety.

Green salads contain many micro-nutrients. Add whole grains, legumes, nuts and seeds variety.

by  donR  October 6, 2015

Should you include green salads every day in your meal plan? It depends on what you and your needs for optimal body function. Dark green leafy green salads are rich in vitamins and minerals, some of which can be toxic  or interfere with medicines if you eat too much. It also depends on whether the dressing contains oil or water needed for digestion. EEEK!, it’s complicated. But, here are some general guidelines for you and your family to consider: Continue reading

Counting Calories To Fight Child Obesity: Is there A Better Way?

Did you notice there is no RDA for sugar on the label? Why?  resd more...

Did you notice there is no RDA for sugar on the label? Why? read more…

by donR   August 18, 2015

The fitness craze of the nineteen seventies saw an explosion of calorie-counting magazine articles, diets and books in an effort to assemble healthier meals. Videos, charts and picture cards like these on Wise Geek were used to memorize calories in common foods. But, according to the  documentary film  “Fed Up,”   which examines the scope and underlying causes of childhood obesity, calorie counting was a confusing, and tedious ritual that did little to curb the way American children ate. Continue reading

Cooking 101: 5 Do’s for Better Nutrition

Include natural, low-fat proteins  in your daily meal plan

Include natural, low-fat proteins in your daily meal plan.

Better Nutrition? Yes, what you eat can make a big difference in how you feel, repair  cells, sleep, your energy level, fight disease and a host of other things going on in your body. Two thousand years ago a Greek physician taught his students to think of food as medicine for the body.  If this is true, what can you do to ensure you are getting the right kinds and quantity of food?

Here are 5 foods often found on most lists of nutritious foods. But first, keep in mind that some foods can interfere with medications so always see your doctor for special needs. Continue reading

It’s Berry Season: Fill Your Freezer The EZ Way

You can buy berries or pick your own directly from Boxx Berry Farm.

You can buy berries or pick your own directly from Boxx Berry Farm.

Isn’t it amazing how fast strawberry season passed us by? But don’t fret because new varieties of strawberries seem to last all year. Not so with the other berries found in the Pacific Northwest. Just a year ago we gave you a primer on preserving blackberries and now is a good time to talk about those super healthy raspberries and blueberries. Continue reading

Eating Well: Download Clean Summer Dinners

mixed vgtables

Garden vegetables are a key ingredient in light summer dinners.

“Eating Well” Magazine and website is packed with recipes that are healthy and flavorful. Their ‘clean living’ series of recipes will appeal to families living in the Pacific Northwest whose gardens are overflowing with succulent green veggies.

Continue reading

Quotes From Seniors; 5 Tips & Tricks For Easier Cooking

bc-cookbbook-182x290Want to learn some “new” tips to make cooking easier?  All you need to do is lead a class in the Senior Center then sit back and listen to all the ideas.  Many in the class started cooking  a half century ago when there were no microwave ovens, crock-pots  or  digital appliances. Many recipes and cooking shortcuts were  passed along by family and friends. Here are five of their quotes. Continue reading

Another $10 Meal: Soba Noodles-the Other Pasta

Fresh Soba noodles are mede from buckwheat; thick, nutty, and comforting.

Fresh Soba noodles are made from buckwheat; thick, nutty, and comforting.

Pasta is a popular choice for Springtime meals; light, spicy, easy to prepare and nutritious if you choose healthier ingredients. We described how to prepare Perfect Pasta in our basic cooking series and today I had a craving for a pasta dinner.  But, to take advantage of the “Hot Sheet Sale” at Cash & Carry, I purchased a 5# bag of fresh Yakisoba noodles ($3.24) along with a 5# bag of shredded cabbage ($2.98), 25# zucchini squash ($14.49) and 14# pk of pork shoulder cushions ($1.15 per pound).

I know…$36.81 is more than the “$10 Meal” in the title but let me share a few of the many meals that can be prepared with these ingredients…see the rest of the story. Continue reading