Healthy Never Tasted So Good Chew on This… Cuz That Ain't Right

July 1, 2013

Eggplant, Turnip Root and Watermelon Radish in Coconut Milk

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photo_Eggplant_Turnip_Root_and_Watermelon_Radish_in_Coconut_Milk

Eggplant, Turnip Root and Watermelon Radish in Coconut Milk

Produce was provided by Matson Family Farm https://www.facebook.com/matson.farm.9

Eggplant, Turnip Root and Watermelon Radish in Coconut Milk

INGREDIENTS:

1 turnip root sliced in crescent moon shape

1 watermelon radish sliced in crescent moon shape

1 small eggplant diced

1 large onion sliced in crescent moon shape

2 T real butter (Irish grass fed)

16 oz Mama Vega Salsa

6-8 cloves fresh garlic

1 can coconut milk

PROCEDURE:

1.  put butter, garlic sliced thinly and radish in frying pan and saute for a few minutes on low heat

2.  cover and cook for 5 minutes

3. stir in onion, saute for a few minutes

4.  add turnip root and egg plant and saute

5.  add Mama Vega*s Salsa

6.  pour in coconut milk and let simmer covered for about 10 minutes on low heat

6.  serve in bowls

Patty Pan Squash Pie

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Photo: Patty Pan Squash RecipePartially bake 9" pie shell and cool2 Patty Pan squash3 oz fresh fugs1.5 oz dates ( more for sweeter taste)2 free range cage free eggs1/8 t ground cloves1/8 t ground nutmeg1 t cinnamon1 t vanilla (Spice Island no corn syrup)1 T granulated honey1. steam squash2.cut squash in cubes3.  Put squash in blender and puree4.  Add dates and figs and blend till also pureed5.  Blend in the two eggs6.  Add spices and blend again7.  Add vanilla and granulated honey blending well8.  Pour into partially baked pie shell9. Bake 350° for 25 min10.  Remove from oven and let cool.11.  Serve alone or with ice cream.

Patty Pan (Sunburst) Squash Recipe

 

Patty Pan Squash Recipe

Partially bake 9″ pie shell and cool

2 Patty Pan squash
3 oz fresh fugs
1.5 oz dates ( more for sweeter taste)
2 free range cage free eggs
1/8 t ground cloves
1/8 t ground nutmeg
1 t cinnamon
1 t vanilla (Spice Island no corn syrup)
1 T granulated honey

1.  steam squash
2.  cut squash in cubes
3.  Put squash in blender and puree
4.   Add dates and figs and blend till also pureed
5.   Blend in the two eggs
6.   Add spices and blend again
7.   Add vanilla and granulated honey blending well
8.    Pour into partially baked pie shell
9.    Bake 350° for 25 min
10.  Remove from oven and let cool.
11.  Serve alone or with ice cream.

 

June 22, 2012

Fire Up the Grill for Heart Health

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Fire Up the Grill for Heart Health

Spicy Grilled Watermelon

(Family Features) Summer grilling season is here. Nearly half of all homeowners grill one to two times per week in the summer months, according to the Hearth, Patio and Barbeque Association. While it is tempting to cook hot dogs, burgers and steaks, it is possible to enjoy flavorful dishes that offer healthful benefits.

To ensure grilling season is as easy as it is healthy and delicious, Registered Dietitian David Grotto provides a few insights to keep in mind this summer:

Pre-season this season. Pre-season your grill with corn oil. By pre-seasoning the grill before its first use, cooking will be easier, clean-up will be a breeze and rusting can be avoided.

Be kind to your heart. Corn oil is a great source of heart-healthy plant sterols, which may help block cholesterol absorption in the body. In fact, corn oil has four times as many cholesterol-blocking sterols as olive oil and 40 percent more than canola oil. Use Mazola Corn Oil to coat foods, like veggies and lean meats for grilling. Added bonus: Corn oil stands up against high-temperature cooking better than olive oil.

For a fun, delicious and uniquely healthy take on fish or lean meats, crush a combination of peanuts and pistachios into fine pieces in a food processor. Stir in just enough corn oil into the nut mixture to coat the pieces, and spread the mixture over a lean protein of your choice. Then, grill away. The pistachios also offer plant sterols, so you get a twofer.

Spice up something sweet. Give sweet foods, like fruit, a kick by pairing them with a marinade or seasoning. Lycopene, an antioxidant found in watermelon, better absorbs in the body with the assistance of an oil-based marinade.

To amp up your grilling recipes, try this mouth-watering Spicy Grilled Watermelon recipe. Find even more recipes at www.mazola.com.

Spicy Grilled Watermelon

Ingredients

  • 1 packet Weber Chipotle Marinade
  • 1/4 cup Mazola Corn Oil
  • 1 2-inch wide slice of watermelon

Preparation

  1. Mix a packet of Weber Chipotle Marinade with Mazola Corn Oil (according to directions on packet).
  2. Slice a 2-inch wide piece of watermelon into 4 triangle pieces. Coat each side with the marinade.
  3. Preheat and coat grill surface with Mazola Corn Oil.
  4. Grill watermelon to its highest setting (or to 500°F). Grill each side for about 5 minutes or until there is a nice slightly brown color with noticeable grill marks.

Serves
2

Preparation Time:
10 minutes

Cook Time:
10 minutes

SOURCE:
Mazola Corn Oil

Health Disclaimer http://www.mamavega.com and http://www.mamavega.com/blog

All information in this article is provided for your information only and may not be construed as medical advice or instruction. No action or inaction should be taken based solely on the contents of this information; instead, readers should consult appropriate health professionals and conduct their own independent research on any matter relating to their health and well-being.

The information and opinions expressed here are believed to be accurate, based on the best judgment and research available to the authors at this time, and readers who fail to consult with appropriate health authorities assume the risk of any injuries.

 



June 14, 2012

How Can Sourdough Bread Be Healthier than Wheat?

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August 1st is Lamas Day

Aug. 1 is Lamas Day

Like everything else in the commercial world of making money, the push for some time now has been to eat more wheat bread because it is healthier for you. Well, just like the rest of the sheep out there, I was following the Pied Piper right over the proverbial cliff. However, just before getting to the edge and falling into the whole wheat abyss, I stumbled, hit my head and woke up with amnesia. Wondering where I was and how I got there, I began my quest to discover why I was listening to the tune “whole wheat.”

Every where I looked, the information pointed to whole wheat; flakes, cracked, bread, pasta and anything else that the industry thought the consumers would buy. One day I decided to deconstruct the process of making bread which lead me to how to make bread the way it used to be made. Kinda like going back to organic, homestead style.

pumpernickel bread

Pumpernickel Bread

To my surprise, I discovered; “SOURDOUGH AND PUMPERNICKEL IS HEALTHIER THAN WHEAT BREADS.” Would you like to know HOW sourdough bread is healthier than wheat bread?

It comes down to the very beginning process of how it is made and then how it is digested in your body.

First, How it’s made:

Sourdough bread making is centuries old. The process was created for preserving ans storing yeast for long periods. this sourdough starter was kept “alive” as the basis for making loaves of bread for travel or just at home. Believe it or not, some of today’s starters are centuries old  and have been handed down from generation to generation and friend to friend.  Hence, the word used to describe this bread at times as “friendship bread”.  Back to the bread.

You need flour and water  to create an environment for yeast to grow.  yeast is floating in the air all around us and just needs the proper environment to land and grow. Yeast is leavening agent, a single-cell fungus that breaks down the starches in the flour, forming sugar. This is fermentation. When the yeast works on the starch and sugar molecules, it gives off carbon dioxide gas and alcohol that makes the bread rise.

Difference between fresh sourdough bread and average store bought bread:

The big difference between sourdough bread and store bought is the source of the yeast. Most bakers today use pre-packaged yeast.  The yeast has been dried, preserved and formed into a powder. You add flour, water, sugar and salt to the yeast to make a loaf of bread. The water re-activates the yeast fungi, which feeds on the sugar and starch to make the bread rise.

Old fashioned sourdough bread works with yeast in a completely different way. Fresh sourdough yeast fungi are  kept alive continuously a starter medium. You can either capture wild yeast that floats in the air as described above to create starter from scratch or get a cup of active starter from a friend.

It is this  starter that gives sourdough bread its distinctive taste…

Sourdough Starter with Cheese Cloth

Sourdough Starter with Cheese Cloth

The yeast causes a lactic acid fermentation process that not only helps to preserve the sourdough bread, but increases its nutritional value by:

  • pre-digesting starches, making the bread more easily digestible
  • lowering insulin response/improving glucose tolerance
  • protecting Vitamin B1 from the damage of the heat of baking
  • breaking down gluten, which may result in a bread that gluten-sensitive people can eat
  • activating phytase to hydrolyze (dissolve) the phytates, thus freeing up minerals such as:
    • zinc
    • iron
    • magnesium
    • copper
    • phosphorus

Sourdough rye is the most nutritious of them all, because it has more phytase activity and thus even fewer phytates in the finished product to bind to your minerals. I just love that the traditional phrase “sourdough rye” turns out to be scientifically proven as the healthiest bread. Somehow our ancestors figured out all the good stuff without the benefit of labs!

Prof. Terry Graham and his team of researchers at the Department of Human Health and Nutritional Sciences found that eating sourdough bread for breakfast had a profound positive effect on digesting your breakfast as well as on digesting your lunch even though the bread was consumed hours prior.  The enzymes in the bread created during fermentation changes the nature of the starches in the bread, creating a more beneficial bread.  This is is also promising to assist overweight people in losing weight.

According to and article in Keeper of the Home, sourdough bread is rated 68 on the Glycemic Index (GI) whereas other breads are rated 100.

According to Mark Sircus Ac., OMD, International Medical Veritas Association, sourdough bread as “the staff of life,” for it enhances the entire immune system. He further suggests that sourdough bread can stop the growth of cancer without killing it.

REFERENCES:

Health Benefits of  Sourdough Bread

Sourdough Bread Has Most health Benefits

Sourdough Bread and Health

Honest Pumpernickel Bread

 

Health Disclaimer http://www.mamavega.com and http://www.mamavega.com/blog

All information in this article is provided for your information only and may not be construed as medical advice or instruction. No action or inaction should be taken based solely on the contents of this information; instead, readers should consult appropriate health professionals and conduct their own independent research on any matter relating to their health and well-being.

The information and opinions expressed here are believed to be accurate, based on the best judgment and research available to the authors at this time, and readers who fail to consult with appropriate health authorities assume the risk of any injuries.

 

June 12, 2012

Diet Soda… Drink Liquid Poison

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Aspartame_Kid

Aspartame Kid

Recently, one of the students from CSUB asked to shadow me as part of her university course requirements for nutrition. I agreed. Last week, the student shared with me her personal experiences after drinking a diet soda. I asked her to provide me with a writeup as part of her work. She shared with me the article written below and I am submitting the article under guest writer.

Guest Writer: Amanda Anderson, CSUB

Diet soda sounds like heaven on Earth for those who are trying to cut calories. What price would you be willing to pay though to cut a few calories out of your daily caloric intake, especially if you have been told that would help you lose weight when you are overweight?

 A few years ago, I was an avid diet soda drinker thinking that I was making a healthier intelligent choice.  However, when my doctor said that I was dehydrated, I started to drink water and cranberry juice on occasion. For a few years, I mostly drank water and cranberry juice.  I was very surprised to get a better feeling. I felt like I had more energy than I did when I drank all of the caffeine I had consumed with the diet soda.  I continued to drink more water with the occasional cranberry juice because I knew I had to stay hydrated and the water was doing just that. 

Recently, while I was at a friend’s house, this past weekend, she had offered me a diet soda.  Not giving much thought to it at the time,  I figured that one diet soda (12 ounce can) wouldn’t hurt and so I drank it.  As I already said, I had been drinking just water and cranberry juice so a soda might be a welcome change just to have something different.  Within a couple hours I had the worst headache imaginable and for the entire weekend I was nauseous and hungry to the point I could not get satisfied.  For some reason, despite my upset stomach, I felt like I needed to eat and I craved fatty foods.  I would imagine to a lesser degree, this is probably what an addict must go through. It seems as though in that short period of time with just one 12 ounce can, I was addicted. During the weekend, I didn’t think that it was the diet soda, but then after I analyzed what I ate, how I felt and the cravings I had never had before in addition to  all of the food and drinks I had consumed, the soda  was the only variable that had changed from my normal typical diet.  

What are millions of people putting into their bodies? If you have a diet coke bottle around you, read the ingredients. Other than carbonated water, do any of the ingredients sound natural or safe?  Do you know what the ingredients/chemicals are doing to your body? I didn’t think so.  The primary culprit for these reactions in the ingredient list is aspartame, which is linked to many detrimental health effects on the human body especially the brain.  According to certified nutritionist Dr. Janet Hull, aspartame is correlated with 100 side effects, including: confusion, slurring of speech, headaches, dizziness, drowsiness, depression, aggression, difficulty concentrating, insomnia, irritability, nausea, abdominal pain, and peptic ulcers (Livestrong). Hopefully you have lost your craving for diet soda by now. Diet soda is not safe for your body and the only fluid, in my opinion, one should be drinking is water. Water is completely natural and with a splash of lemon juice can also be quite delicious. Enjoy your summer with some ice water and leave the coca cola at the store!

REFERENCES:

Aspartame and Neurological Side Efffects

The Effects of Aspartame on Health

Aspartame – Anxiety, Depression and Suicide Among Children

Aspartame consumption Is Never Safe

Aspartame Causes Birth Defects and Mental Retardation

 

Health Disclaimer http://www.mamavega.com and http://www.mamavega.com/blog

All information in this article is provided for your information only and may not be construed as medical advice or instruction. No action or inaction should be taken based solely on the contents of this information; instead, readers should consult appropriate health professionals and conduct their own independent research on any matter relating to their health and well-being.

The information and opinions expressed here are believed to be accurate, based on the best judgment and research available to the authors at this time, and readers who fail to consult with appropriate health authorities assume the risk of any injuries.

 

May 26, 2012

Recipes: Ingredients for Healthy Grillin

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It’s “Grillin Time!”  You ask: What about the carcinogens? How can I tenderize the meats? What will help my system digest the meats and proteins? Are there any good marinade suggestions or recipes?

Carcinogens

When meats are grilled, carcinogens are created. Unlike meat, vegetables don’t create carcinogens when they char.  Scientists have come up with ways you can dramatically reduce the hazard of carcinogens in grilled meat.  according to Fitness and Freebies, scientists have come up with ways to reduce carcinogens in grilled foods. the following are a few of those suggestions:

  • Flip your burgers often. By turning burgers once a minute and cooking them over a low heat you reduce HCAs and kill potentially deadly E. Coli bacteria. In addition, use a meat thermometer to make sure the meat reaches 160 degrees. This is the temperature needed to deactivate E. coli. The appearance of the meat being brown does not mean it is thoroughly cooked.
  • Use the right marinade. Marinate raw meat in a thin, liquid sauce for at least ten minutes. When thick commercial sauces are used, the HCAs triple. Dilute thick sauces.
  • Microwave first. Partially cook burgers, poultry, ribs and fish in a microwave oven for at least ten minutes before grilling. Be sure you discard juices when done. By practicing this procedure, you eliminate 90-percent of HCAs.
  • Add anti-cancer soy. Mix 1/2-cup of textured soy protein into a pound of ground meat before grilling. This cuts 95-percent of the expected HCAs in burgers without affecting taste.
  • Enhance with vitamin E . Add vitamin E to raw meat grinders. 120 milligrams of vitamin E powder mixed into or sprinkled on 3.5-ounce patties can reduce HCA formation as much as 72-percent. You can use a capsule of vitamin and crack it open for contents.
  • Try a fruit burger. This will not be for everyone but the fact is if you mix a pound of ground meat with a cup of tart, ground cherries before grilling, you suppress 90-percent of HCA formation. Other deep -colored fruits rich in antioxidants work as well. These include grapes, blueberries, and plums.
  • Add garlic and herbs. Garlic, rosemary and sage reduce HCAs when mixed into burgers. In addition, use them in marinades or just eat them in a meal with grilled meat. Antioxidants in citrus fruits also block HCAs.
  • Do not order meat very well-done. The longer you cook meat at high temperatures the more HCAs you produce. This applies in grilling, broiling and frying. If you cook a steak well done as opposed to medium-well, you double HCAs.
  • Drink tea with your barbecue. Chemicals in black and green tea help detoxify HCAs. Hot or iced tea from bags or loose tea is what you want to drink. Bottled teas or powdered, instant teas are not beneficial. If you wish, you can also marinate meat, poultry and fish in concentrated tea. Let the tea bag steep in 1/4-cup of hot water for five minutes.
  • Skip meat entirely and grill greens. Fruits and vegetables do not contain creatine, the animal protein needed to make HCAs. Pineapple and peppers are very good when grilled. In addition, eating fruits, vegetables and green salads along with barbecued meat lessens the cancer hazard.

 

Tenderize:

Below are a few natural ingredients to tenderize meats:

  1. fresh raw unripened papaya contains an enzyme, papain, which breaks down the meat’s connective tissue when it comes in contact with the meat; red meat is the preferred meat to tenderize this way
  2. fresh pineapple contains bromelain, an enzyme that is  anti-inflammatory and aids digestion
  3. Asian pears – when cooked used to tenderize meats
  4. fig – has the enzyme called ficin which breaks down both muscle fiber protein and both types of connective tissue fibers.
  5. kiwi – contains a sulfhydryl protease enzyme,  acitinidin which mildly tenderizes when over ripe kiwi is used
  6. kachri melon – contains the enzyme called  cucumin, tenderize spent hen meat, tough sheep and buffalo meat successfully,
  7. ginger – contains a protease enzyme, zingibain, acts on the collagen and actomyosin of meat which contributes to the tenderness of meat.

    Papain Characteristics

    If you score the skin of a raw Papaya with knife, the fruit will exude a milky white substance known as the latex that contains Papain.  The Papain enzyme activity depends on two factors: pH factor, and the temperature.

    Effect of the pH factor

    pH for optimal Papain activity: 6.0-7.0

    The enzyme is active when the pH factor is neutral (pH = 7) to slightly acid (pH = 6). The pH of most of the meats is neutral to slightly acid.

    Effect of temperature

    Temperature for optimal Papain activity: 149 °F
    Inactive Papain: 170°F to 185 °F
    Active Papain Range: 140 °F to 160 °F

    If you just store the meat with the papaya paste in the refrigerator, it will do nothing to tenderize meat. It starts to become active at 140 °F, slows down at 170 °F, and dies at 185 °F.

  8. yogurt –  this is the preferred ingredient to tenderize chicken,

Preparing Yogurt Marinate

The live culture, fat, and lactic acid are the key components of yogurt that help with tenderizing.

In Punjab, Tandoori spices are added to yogurt to enhance flavor.

Tandoori Marinate Chicken / Seafood

– As a minimum, the marinate should include salt

– Add tomatoes to increase the acid

– Add Ginger for enzymes

– Add oil to increase the fat

How long to marinate meat?

It depends on pH factor, temperature, fats, type of meat. Marinating also infuses the flavors in the meat. I use the following table.

Seafood: 30 minutes at room temperature

Chicken/ lamb :  8 to 12 hours in the refrigerator

Chicken/ lamb :  4 to six hours at room temperature

Digestion of meats:

Ingredients that assist with the digestion of meats as well as they have other health benefits:

  1. garlic – antibacterial, antiviral, antiseptic,
  2. pineapple – contains bromelain, an enzyme that is  anti-inflammatory and aids digestion
  3. ginger – ease digestive complaints and nausea
  4. turmeric – combined with parsley aids digestion, cancer preventative, stimulates the gall bladder to release bile, a substance that helps fat digestion
  5. peppermint – causes the muscles of the stomach to relax, allowing food to move into the intestines faster and digestive gases to be passed,
  6. anise – member of the parsley family, aids digestion, reduces gas, naturally promote breast milk,
  7. basil – has flavonoids (which provide protection at the cellular level), anti-bacterial properties that inhibit several species of pathogenic bacteria – which have been shown to be resistant to commonly used antibiotics.
  8. black pepper – increase circulation, regulate blood pressure, reduces pain during joint movement, during digestion,  helps reduce free radicals and prevents the useless breakdown of vitamin A,
  9. cinnamon – mild energy boost, relieves abdominal spasms and gas,
  10. fennel – works well with cinnamon. Fennel is a also a good source of niacin, calcium. vitamin C, folate, iron, magnesium, phosphorus and copper.
  11. lemon peel
  12. parsley –  combined with turmeric aids digestion, three times as much vitamin-C as oranges, double the calcium as broccoli,
  13. cardamom – aid to digestion, stimulates metabolism and  has aphrodisiac properties.
  14. coriander – vitamin C, coriander is also believed to help reduce swelling and cholesterol levels, and eliminate mouth ulcers, anemia and menstrual disorders.
  15. dill – rich in minerals, vitamin C and flavonoids; one tablespoon has more calcium than 1/3 cup of milk.
  16. bay (laurel) leaf –  also beneficial in treating migraines and diabetes,
  17. oregano – antibacterial  inhibit the growth of many kinds of bacteria, including those that can cause food borne illnesses.
  18. rosemary – improve memory, treat colds, headaches, nervous tension and as an antispasmodic

Marinades and Recipes:

Teriyaki Sauce

One garlic of clove
1/2 teaspoon minced fresh ginger
2 tablespoons brown sugar
1/2 cup soy sauce
1/2 cup water
Mix all. Pour over meat, fish or poultry. Marinate at least ten minutes. 1-cup


Turmeric Garlic Marinade

2 tablespoons garlic powder
1 teaspoon ground turmeric
1/2 cup orange juice
Mix all. Pour over meat, fish or poultry and marinate at least ten minutes. 1/2 cup.


Rosemary Tea Marinade

1/2 cup concentrated tea (two bags brewed in 1/2 cup hot water for five minutes)
1 teaspoon crushed rosemary
1 garlic clove, crushed
2 teaspoons honey
2 teaspoons soy sauce
Add rosemary, garlic, honey and soy sauce to hot tea. Cool slightly. Pour over steaks, ribs, burgers, chicken or fish. Marinate at least ten minutes. 1/2 cup.

Preparing Papaya or Pineapple Tenderizer Paste

Raw Papaya

1. Peel green skin up about 1/8th to ¼” deep off the raw papaya or pineapple or combination of both.

2. Add ¼ teaspoon of salt per two Tablespoons of Papaya.

3. Grind to a paste. You need 2 Tablespoon of Papaya paste for one pound of meat.

Preparing Yogurt Marinate

The live culture, fat, and lactic acid are the key components of yogurt that help with tenderizing.

In Punjab, Tandoori spices are added to yogurt to enhance flavor.

Tandoori Marinate Chicken / Seafood

– As a minimum, the marinate should include salt

– Add tomatoes to increase the acid

– Add Ginger for enzymes

– Add oil to increase the fat

 

How long to marinate meat?

It depends on pH factor, temperature, fats, type of meat. Marinating also infuses the flavors in the meat. I use the following table.

Seafood: 30 minutes at room temperature

Chicken/ lamb :  8 to 12 hours in the refrigerator

Chicken/ lamb :  4 to six hours at room temperature

Health Disclaimer http://www.mamavega.com and http://www.mamavega.com/blog

All information in this article is provided for your information only and may not be construed as medical advice or instruction. No action or inaction should be taken based solely on the contents of this information; instead, readers should consult appropriate health professionals and conduct their own independent research on any matter relating to their health and well-being.

The information and opinions expressed here are believed to be accurate, based on the best judgment and research available to the authors at this time, and readers who fail to consult with appropriate health authorities assume the risk of any injuries.

May 22, 2012

Fries… How to Cook Homemade

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There are several foods that autistic individuals are drawn to and even crave with French fries at the top of the list. However, this “can’t live without” vegetable when fried, roasted, grilled or fried at high temperatures creates acrylamides a toxic human carcinogen that is detrimental to the brain. Given autism is a neurological disorder, these fried vegetables inhibit normal brain function resulting in adversely impacting the forward growth and development of the autistic individual.

Here is what you can do to minimize the toxic affects and hopefully transition the individual to more healthy food choices. Try substituting foods that will have similar tastes and textures. In the meantime, follow the destarching and baking instructions below. This is not a quick process, but isn’t the health of you and your loved one worth the time?

This method should be used with high starch vegetables (beans, peas, corn etc) which are usually root vegetables (yams, potatoes, beets, jicama, etc )

Destarching reduces the toxic human carcinogen acrylamides    by 23% by washing, 35% by soaking 30 minutes and 48% by soaking 2 hours.

Below is how to destarch before beginning the cooking process:

  1. Using a vegetable brush and clean water with a few drops of Clorox or vegetable cleaner, scrub the outside of the vegetables,
  2. cut in strips so they resemble French fries,
  3. as you are cutting the strips, place them in a bowl of ice water,
  4. soak in the ice water for twenty (30) minutes,
  5. scoop the vegetables out of this water making sure to leave all this water behind,
  6. put the vegetables in another bowl of clean ice water,
  7. refrigerate for 2 hours making sure the vegetables are covered with cold water,
  8. remove from refrigerator and pat dry,
  9. vegetables are now ready to bake or fry; baking is my recommendation as it is healthier and any acrylamides produced will be half those created by frying provided the baking temperature is less than what you would use in frying.

Cooking:

  1. Put cut vegetables in boiling water (approximately 170 degrees),
  2. blanch for 3-4 minutes,
  3. remove from water, towel dry and cool for 30 minutes,
  4. spray a baking sheet with a nonstick spray,
  5. at this point some people will put in a bag with corn starch and coat to get extra crispy, but this coating will add to the level of acrylamides which has been  reduced in the destarching process,
  6. place cut vegetables on the sheet in a single layer,
  7. drizzle lightly with olive oil, grape seed oil or coconut oil,
  8. toss with your hands to make sure well coated,
  9. bake at 300 degrees for approximately 2 minutes (very lightly brown, pale),
  10. remove from oven, cool 30 minutes,
  11. put in the freezer for one (1) hour
  12. if you are not going to finish cooking at this point, put in freezer bags to finish cooking later,
  13. if you are going to finish cooking, bake at 375 degrees until the desired browning is attained, approximately 4-5 minutes,
  14. to assist your body with breaking down the remaining carbs, starches and sugars, toss with pureed garlic and onion, fresh ground rosemary and finely chopped Italian parsley
  15. Enjoy without ketchup as it has added sugar and would undermine all your efforts to produce this healthy snack.

For more details on why it is important to destarch, read our post: “How to Destarch High Carb Vegetables”

Health Disclaimer http://www.mamavega.com

All information in this article is provided for your information only and may not be construed as medical advice or instruction. No action or inaction should be taken based solely on the contents of this information; instead, readers should consult appropriate health professionals and conduct their own independent research on any matter relating to their health and well-being.

The information and opinions expressed here are believed to be accurate, based on the best judgment and research available to the authors at this time, and readers who fail to consult with appropriate health authorities assume the risk of any injuries.

May 20, 2012

How to Destarch High Carb Vegetables

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What are high carb (carbohydrate) starchy vegetables and why do we want to destarch them?

High starch vegetables are vegetables that are high in carb (carbohydrates) and sugars and low in protein.  Some high starch vegetables are: corn, potatoes, beans, peas, yams, and many other root vegetables (vegetables that grow under the ground). High starch vegetables generally contain 80% – 90% carbohydrates  of their nutritional value with 20% indigestible starch.

There are several health and nutritional reasons we should destarch these vegetables before consuming. First, reducing the starch content reduces sugars that lead to increased potential for diabetes, obesity, and other diseases.  the body uses carbohydrates and sugars for energy, but the unused carbohydrates that have been consumed  gets stored and converts to fat.  Reduction in carbohydrate (sugar) intake can prevent rapid rises and falls in blood sugar, which can cause irritability and difficulty concentrating.

“These high carb (carbohydrate) vegetable  cells are held together by pectin, a form of sugar that acts as a type of glue. These cells also contain starch granules—tiny sacs that resemble water balloons, as well as simple sugars. When these starch granules are exposed to water and heat, they begin to swell, eventually bursting, and releasing a shower of swollen starch molecules. ” (www.seriouseats.com)

Why do we want to destarch high carbohydrate vegetables before consuming? Vegetables rich in starch and sugar and low in protein that are cooked at high temperatures crate a toxic substance, acrylamide, that inhibits brain functioning.

Soaking these high carbohydrate vegetables  has benefits beyond removing approximately half the starch. Soaking also  reduces the levels of acrylamide, the chemical formed when foods high in starch are fried or cooked at high heat, such as baking, toasted or roasting. Acrylamides may contribute to cancers and reduction in brain function . Soaking these vegetables for two hours before cooking reduced the level of acrylamide by 48 percent, researchers from Leatherhead Food International reported in the March 2008 issue of the “Journal of the Science of Food and Agriculture.”

The soaking process may also remove some pesticides that were used in the growing of these vegetables. The soil in which they were grown often contain toxic metals, and are suspected as a possible cause of some cases of autism. The vegetables will feel noticeably smoother as the rough starch granules have been pulled out of the vegetables and are now in the water. The water will appear cloudy.

If possible, eat organic foods as they do not contain pesticides, and have more nutrients (vitamins and minerals). If eating non-organic food, wash fruit and vegetables well if eating the outside.

Below is a healthier way to prepare  root vegetables for coking as you would French fries:

  1. Using a vegetable brush and clean water with a few drops of Clorox or vegetable cleaner, wash and scrub the outside of the vegetables (reduces acrylamides 23%),
  2. cut in strips so they resemble French fries,
  3. as you are cutting the strips, place them in a bowl of ice water,
  4. soak in the ice water for twenty (30) minutes (reduces acrylamides 35%) ,
  5. scoop the vegetables out of this water making sure to leave all this water behind,
  6. put the vegetables in another bowl of clean ice water,
  7. refrigerate for 2 hours making sure the vegetables are covered with cold water (reduces acrylamides 48%),
  8. remove from refrigerator and pat dry,
  9. vegetables are now ready to bake or fry; baking is my recommendation as it is healthier and any acrylamides produced will be half those created by frying provided the baking temperature is less than what you would use in frying.

There are a few more steps to getting that perfect baked vegetable French fry; crispy out side and soft inside.  Check out our blog post: How to Cook Homemade Fries

Health Disclaimer http://www.mamavega.com

All information in this article is provided for your information only and may not be construed as medical advice or instruction. No action or inaction should be taken based solely on the contents of this information; instead, readers should consult appropriate health professionals and conduct their own independent research on any matter relating to their health and well-being.

The information and opinions expressed here are believed to be accurate, based on the best judgment and research available to the authors at this time, and readers who fail to consult with appropriate health authorities assume the risk of any injuries.

 

 

 

 

 

April 28, 2012

The K-E Diet:Leaves you Full of $#!+

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This say yes to the dress extreme weight loss feeding tube, K-E Diet, that many brides are choosing to embrace in my opinion is not healthy for your body or your purse.

Let’s start with the two side affects they mention, bad breath and constipation. Bad breath is usually a sign that something is rotting or at the least disagreeable with the normal functioning of your body. Sinus problems are also an indicator of bad breath. given the fact that this tube is inserted into your nose for 10 days, what is the likelihood that a sinus condition develops?

Postnasal drip can cause bad breath. this particular diet simulates post nasal drip and possibly causes  inflammation in the air passages behind the nose leading to a possible sinus infection.
Bacteria on the back of the tongue are one of the commonest causes of bad breath. Food particles, postnasal drip and stagnant saliva build up in the ‘fur’ at the back of the tongue, providing a breeding ground for bacteria. There was nothing mentioned about drinking water which would help to cleanse the mouth from the negative affects of the dripping.
Anything that dries the mouth makes bad breath worse, because saliva and water cleanses the mouth. This particular diet resembles fasting well and  can cause in a dry mouth and worsen a bad breath problem.
This diet causes constipation because there is no fiber in the liquid they are feeding you with via the tube in your nose.   We are all intelligent and know that the lacking fiber which makes the “river” flow so you can go results in a dam in the river. The debris that backs up is toxic to your system and ultimately can lead to other diseases.
Try eating: apples, celery, prunes, lentils, quinoa, salmon, olive oil, Greek yogurt, egg, kiwi and sweet potatoes


So, let me get this right; putting a feeding tube down your nose that could be causing bad breath, sinus infection and constipation and a $1,500.00 bill is way more appealing than eating healthy and incorporating exercise with your normal daily activities! Not to mention you can keep   $1,500.00 in your pocket for a new wardrobe.
I will take the new wardrobe!

Also, doctors say this extreme rapid weight loss will not be permanent. Your brain cannot process the quick weight loss. What happens when you go back to eating solid foods?

Finally, the main reason many of these women have chosen to take this radical and unconventional method is because they do not feel like exercising. In other words, they do not feel like increasing oxygen flowing through their body increasing the likelihood of slowing down the aging process.  Exercising has so many health benefits that it will have to be covered in another blog post.

Mama Vega*s Weight Loss Chart       Water_and_Weight_Loss_Chart_2_04012012

Health Disclaimer

All information in this recipe is provided for your information only and may not be construed as medical advice or instruction. No action or inaction should be taken based solely on the contents of this information; instead, readers should consult appropriate health professionals and conduct their own independent research on any matter relating to their health and well-being.

The information and opinions expressed here are believed to be accurate, based on the best judgment and research available to the authors at this time, and readers who fail to consult with appropriate health authorities assume the risk of any injuries.

December 15, 2010

33 Foods to Stay Young

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Avocados
Guacamole, anyone? According to Paula Simpson, BASc, RNCP, the oil found in avocados works to toughen your skin while also hydrating it. Another perk? “Avocados are full of monounsaturated fatty acids,” says Robyn Flipse, MS, RD. “This is the healthiest type of fat for the cardiovascular system because it doesn’t promote inflammation.”

Berries

Stocked with antioxidants, these yummy snacks neutralize damaging free radicals, says Simpson. They also help the body manufacture collagen, leaving your skin firm and smooth.

Low-Fat Yogurt

You already know it’s full of protein and calcium, but yogurt contains other vital nutrients as well, according to Lisa Drayer, MA, RD, author of The Beauty Diet. “The vitamin B in yogurt is essential for multiple body functions, including cell growth and division.” Just one cup of yogurt has 450 milligrams of calcium, more than a cup of fat-free milk.
Water-Rich Foods

Foods high in water content, such as cucumbers, watermelon, apples, peaches, melons, and celery, are some of the best hydrating solutions for your skin, says Simpson. They keep away wrinkles and therefore keep you looking fresh-faced. Flipse also recommends hydrating fluids, like green tea or sparkling beverages, to keep the skin moist.

Wild Salmon

This fish is an anti-aging remedy for your mental health. The omega-3 fatty acids improve your memory and brain function while reducing inflammation, says Flipse. Drayer suggests choosing wild salmon over farmed to avoid the higher fat levels and chlorinated pesticides that farmed salmon often contain.

Zinc, Copper, and Selenium

These minerals are required for collagen production, says Simpson. To stock up, choose foods like chicken, lean beef, walnuts, chickpeas, and dried fruits. “Zinc is essential for a healthy immune system, and selenium helps your skin retain its natural elasticity,” says Drayer.

Oysters

Not only are oysters full of zinc and selenium, according to Drayer, the high levels of these minerals serve as an antioxidant and help protect you against eye-related disease.

Carrots and Tomatoes

The more colorful the better, says Flipse. These bright veggies are stocked with phytonutrients and antioxidants, both of which protect against damaging free radicals. The beta carotene and lycopene found in them also protect your skin from sun damage and repair skin cells, says Simpson.

Dark Chocolate

Some say, “Too good to be true,” but Flipse says, “Resveratorol and flavanols.” These two compounds are the good stuff in dark chocolate that promote circulation and can even protect against moderate sun damage. Just make sure to choose dark chocolate over milk, as the dark chocolate is more beneficial to your health.

Blueberries

All berries have some anti-aging perks, but blueberries are soaring in popularity because of the amount of vitamin C and E they contain, says Drayer. These vitamins fight aging by ridding the body of harmful chemicals that have long-term, damaging effects on our organs. We’ll be making a blueberry pie this weekend, stat.

Broccoli, Beets, and Red Cabbage

These veggies are all natural detoxifiers, says Simpson. They minimize toxicities that build up in our bloodstream and, eventually, dull our complexion.

Kiwifruit

Eating kiwifruit will not only help maintain clear skin, it will also promote healthy bones. Drayer says one cup peeled kiwifruit contains more vitamin C than the equivalent amount of oranges. Plus, it neutralizes free radicals that could lead to things like cancer and heart disease.

Rosemary

“Rosemary is rich in phytochemicals,” says Simpson. “This increases levels of ceramide in the skin, which helps to retain moisture and elasticity.”

Spinach

Another great (and affordable) vegetable choice. “Spinach has an exceptional lutein content,” says Drayer, “which helps keep our eyes healthy and bright.” Spinach also has tons of vitamins, including folate (vitamin B9), which aids in the production and maintenance of new cells, including red blood cells.

Ginger, Turmeric, Cocoa, Cayenne, and Cinnamon

These spices have potent antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects on the body, says Simpson. They also help balance blood sugar and can be easily incorporated into beverages or even food.

Sweet Potatoes

The beta-carotene in this Thanksgiving favorite is a powerful antioxidant and is fat-soluble. Drayer says you might notice smoother skin after munching on sweet potatoes regularly, as our bodies turn beta-carotene into vitamin A, which helps smooth skin and ward off wrinkles.

Whole Grains and Fibers

Fiber is essential for normal skin functioning and the regrowth of new cells. Plus, the complex carbohydrates in the whole grains maintain blood glucose levels and reduce glycation, which makes our skin less elastic, Flipse says.

Walnuts

“Walnuts are one of the only nuts that contain a high amount of omega-3 fatty acids,” says Drayer. “This has been shown to protect against high blood pressure and heart disease, and increase bone strength.” Their anti-inflammatory perks also relieve skin diseases such as eczema and even asthma and rheumatoid arthritis.
Keeping your colon clean rids your body of toxins that may cause aging and cell degeneration.



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