There is a lot now that challenges us every day. Here are a few suggestions that could be enjoyable and helpful, such as cooking and, of course, eating!
A podcast I like is What’s Cookin’, that highlights favorite easy recipes. Here’s a recipe from herbalist Cathy McNease that only takes about 15 minutes and is a great addition to something more substantial, or as a stand-alone. McNease is a nationally certified herbalist with a diploma in Chinese Herbology, and a B.S. in Biology/Psychology from Western Michigan University.
As McNease says, “This is my go-to when I am tired and want a healthy meal quickly. Start to finish is about 10-15 minutes.”
- Gather vegetables of your choice – broccoli, potato, zucchini, onion – all work well, singly or together. Then steam the veggies.
- Place veggies and steam water in the blender along with 1 can of coconut milk, 1-3 Tbsp. of miso paste (depending on how salty you like it), and seasonings you like – I use cumin powder, oregano, and basil. Blend together.
- Top with chopped cilantro. Serve with crackers, chips or buttered toast.
Have a favorite recipe? Send it to: firstname.lastname@example.org and share it with readers.
Another article that can be accessed as a podcast, includes a discussion on the vast rainbow of foods available to us. According to McNease, in Staying Healthy with a Rainbow of Foods, a healthier life may be possible through eating a rainbow of fruits and vegetables every day. I liked the explanation of how each color vegetable provides a set of unique nutrients to ward off diseases and promote energy. Below are excerpts from McNease’s work. If you know about nutrition already, this will be a pertinent reminder.
Red fruits and vegetables are colored by plant pigments called lycopene (in tomatoes, watermelon, pink grapefruit) or anthocyanins (in strawberries, cherries, raspberries, red grapes). They protect our hearts, improve brain function, and reduce risk of osteoporosis and diabetes. And ketchup counts!
Orange and yellow fruits and vegetables are colored by plant pigments called carotenoids, which help reduce the risk of cancer, heart disease and can improve immune system function. Beta-carotene in sweet potatoes, pumpkins, winter squash, persimmons, papaya, peaches, and carrots, is converted to vitamin A. Orange and yellow foods are also rich in vitamin C. Yellow and green fruits and vegetables contain another group of carotenoids that are also important in preventing macular degeneration. You may choose spinach, broccoli, green beans, cabbage, and corn for these nutrients.
Green fruits and vegetables are rich in folic acid and chlorophyll. Folic acid protects us from cancer, high levels of LDL (the bad cholesterol), regulates digestion and improves immune system function. All green foods also contain chlorophyll, nature’s blood builder and detoxifier. In addition to all the leafy green vegetables, zucchini, peas and seaweeds, there are also a few green fruits: avocados, grapes, kiwis, limes and green apples.
Blue and purple foods contain a pigment called anthocyanins, the same pigment in some red foods. Grapes, eggplant, plums, blueberries, red cabbage, and beets are examples. This nutrient benefits the cardiovascular system, lowering cholesterol, helping maintain the flexibility of blood vessels, and supporting blood flow, perhaps contributing to better visual acuity and reduction of glaucoma, as well as a reduced risk of cancer, stroke, and heart disease.
White fruits and vegetables contain allicin, known to lower LDL (bad cholesterol) as well as blood pressure and boost the immune. Examples are potatoes, onions, mushrooms, turnips, bananas, white peaches, and pears. These white foods also help reduce the risk of stomach cancer and heart disease. Bananas and potatoes are good sources of the mineral potassium. People who eat generous amounts of fruits and vegetables are likely to reduce their risk of many chronic diseases.
If you’d like to access other articles/podcasts from LGBTSR-2, check out: https://lgbtsr.com/about-lgbtsr-2/
Former First Lady Michelle Obama is continuing her quest to raise healthy food consciousness in the world. If you would like to see a visual of her plan of what a plate with appropriate portions looks like, access the link below. A simple plan and brilliant illustration. (Go to www.choosemyplate.gov).
These times may seem as though we have no power and control over things. The power and control we DO have right now is to take good care of ourselves and those we love and care for. Please stay safe, stay home, and try to be patient.