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Inflamation in the Body

Lots of study’s have been released over the last couple years showing the disturbing trend between inflammation in the body and disease and/or chronic illness/conditions.

Here are some anti-inflammatory foods to help keep inflammation down in the body.

Food Group:

Meat, Fish, Poultry:

Anti-inflammatory:

  • chicken, trukey and lamb
  • all legumes, dried peas and lentils.
  • cold water fish: such as salmon, halibut and mackerel

Inflammatory:

  • red meats
  • cold cuts, frank furter, sausage and canned meats
  • eggs

Dairy Products:

Anti-inflammatory:

  • unsweetened, live culture yogurt.
  • milk substitutes such as: rice milks, nut milks and soy beverages

Inflammatory:

  • milk and cheese
  • cream and ice cream
  • non-dairy sweeteners

 

 

Pumpkin Everything

With the chilly weather returning so quickly everyone is gearing up for Fall and with that means its pumpkin everything season again. While it might be annoying to see it plastered in all products until Christmas. Pumpkins surprisingly have a lot of health benefits.

The Seeds

Most people cook these after craving their pumpkins. Have a tasty snack but WEB MD states: Pumpkin seeds are rich in the amino acid tryptophan, the famed ingredient in turkey that many think brings on the need for that post-Thanksgiving feast snooze. While experts agree that it’s likely the overeating rather than the tryptophan lulling you to sleep, the amino acid is important in production of serotonin, one of the major players when it comes to our mood.

Also like most seeds and nuts, pumpkin seeds can help your heart.  They are naturally rich in certain plant-based chemicals called phytosterols that have been shown in studies to reduce LDL or “bad” cholesterol.

The Pumpkin

Most people only think of it as a desert or an added flavor or scent to our festive traditions, but it can be utilized for so much more.

Most people reach for the Banana after a workout to restore the body’s electrolytes and help with muscle function. Turns out, a cup of cooked pumpkin has more of the refueling nutrient potassium, with 564 milligrams to a banana’s 422.

Pumpkin is also packed with vitamin C and rich in carotenoids, the compounds that give the gourd their bright orange color, including beta-carotene, which the body converts into a form of vitamin A for additional peeper protection.

Pumpkin also has beta-carotene  which may play a role in fighting certain cancers and help smooth wrinkles.

Its also a great source of fiber. Most people associate fiber with bran but not squash, however pumpkin has three grams per one-cup serving and only 49 calories, it can keep you feeling full for longer on fewer calories.

Watermelon Salad

Recipe: Watermelon, Arugula, Feta Salad


Original recipe makes 8 cups

  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 teaspoons white balsamic vinegar
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 2 cups arugula
  • 2 cups baby spinach leaves
  • 1 cup thinly sliced red onion
  • 1 cup grape tomatoes, halved
  • 1/2 cup crumbled feta cheese
  • 2 cups bite sized watermelon chunks

 

  1. Whisk the olive oil, white balsamic vinegar, and salt together in a small bowl; set aside.
  2. Combine the arugula, spinach, onions, and tomatoes in a large salad bowl. Drizzle the vinaigrette over the salad mixture; toss to coat. Add the feta cheese and watermelon to serve.

 

Summer Veggies & Goat’s Cheese Pasta

Ingredients

  • Kosher salt
  • 1 large yellow tomato, seeded and diced
  • 1 small yellow squash, finely diced
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh chives (1 small bunch)
  • Finely grated zest of 1 lemon
  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 4 ounces soft goat cheese, crumbled
  • 12 ounces dried egg fettuccine (use rice pasta for a lighter meal)
  • 4 ounces wax beans (about 2 cups), trimmed and halved lengthwise
  • 1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese

Directions

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Toss the veggies  (tomato, squash, chives,) lemon zest and 2 tablespoons olive oil in a large bowl.

Season with salt. Sprinkle in half of the goat cheese.

Add the pasta to the boiling water and cook as the label directs, adding the wax beans to the pot during the last 3 minutes of cooking.

Reserve 1/4 cup of the cooking water, then drain the pasta and beans and add to the bowl with the veggies.

Drizzle with the reserved cooking water and the remaining 1 tablespoon olive oil and toss until the goat cheese begins to melt.

Add the Parmesan and toss. Divide among bowls and top with the remaining goat cheese.

Spring Vegetable Garden Minestrone

This is a spring staple.  Most of the ingredients grow locally.  Cook the vegetables very minimally in order to benefit from the easy digestion of cooked vegetables, but to preserve some of the enzymes found in raw vegetables.

  • 4 cups veggie stock
    1 bunch asparagus, sliced into bite sized pieces
    2 carrots sliced into 1/8 inch rounds
    1 cup canned chick peas, drained and rinsed.
    1 zucchini sliced into bite sized pieces
    1 cup watercress, large stems discarded
    1/4 cup basil, sliced thinly into ribbons
    1/4 cup parsley, finely chopped.
    2 green onions, sliced

  • Bring stock to a gentle simmer in a medium saucepan.  

  • Add asparagus, carrots, and zucchini, and simmer for 1 minute.  

  • Remove from heat, and stir in chickpeas, watercress, basil, parsley and green onion.  

  • Season with Salt and Pepper.