Clearly, one can live long. Diet matters, as do other lifestyle habits (including smoking and physical activity), environmental exposures, and genetics factors. While scientists dissect the relative contributions of these factors, it is prudent to recommend a diet rich in fruits and vegetables and reduced in saturated fat, salt, meats, refined grains, sweets, and full-fat dairy products.
-Dr. Lawrence J. Appel, of Johns Hopkins University, in his editorial appearing in the July 16th. 2008 issue of Circulation-
Yep, none of this is startling news. We all know it--but here it is once more in the July 16, 2008 issue of Circulation. This time it's a huge study that analyzed the food diaries that were kept by over 72,000 nurses from 1984-2002, as part of the Nurses' Health Study. All the nurses were disease-free in 1984. By 2002, 6011 had died.
What the Researchers Found Out About Diet & Health
- The Prudent Diet. Those nurses who ate a "high Prudent Diet" with a large consumption of vegetables, fruit, legumes, fish, poultry & whole grains, had a 28% reduced risk of cardiovascular death and a 17% reduced risk of premature death from all causes.
- The Western Diet. Those nurses who ate a "high Western Diet" with a large consumption of red and processed meat, refined grains, French fries and sweets/desserts had a 22% increased risk of cardiovascular death, a 16% increased risk of cancer death, and a 21% increased risk of premature death from all causes.
- The study controlled for the known risk factors of age, smoking, physical inactivity, body mass index and total calorie intake.
Veganomicon--Just What the Doctor Ordered!
Even if the thought of vegetarian, let alone vegan cooking makes your nose turn up-- give this recipe a try. I guarantee you'll love it. It's fast, delicious & nutritious. Even my confirmed "only-meat-makes-a-real-meal" son thought it was a hit. He downed 2 helpings.
"[This] unassuming book is full of recipes for which even a carnivore would give up a night of meat.—San Francisco Chronicle, 12/12/07
Quinoa Salad with Black Beans and Mango
*If you're new to quinoa, read all about its virtues in my previous post. Click here!
1 mango, peeled and cut into small dice. (I used some frozen mango I had tucked in the back of my freezer.)
1 red bell pepper, seeded and diced as small as you can get it.
1 cup chopped scallions.
1 cup chopped fresh cilantro.
2 tablespoons grapeseed oil. (Substitute lime or orange juice--or orange or lemon vinegar)
2 tablespoons of wine vinegar. (I used balsamic vinegar--rice wine vinegar would also work well)
1/4 tsp. salt (1/2 tsp. is using Kosher salt)
2 cups cooked quinoa, cooled. (Use Eden organic brand. It's the highest in protein & fiber.)
1 (15-ounce) can of black beans, drained and rinsed.
Optional: I added a finely diced jalapeno pepper for a nice kick! Updated Option: I liked it even better with 2 finely chopped jalapeno peppers, substituting rice vinegar for wine vinegar, and a little sprinkle of Trader Joe's toasted chopped pecans on top!
Combine the mango, red bell pepper, scallions, and cilantro in a mixing bowl. Add the red wine (or balsamic) vinegar, grapeseed oil, and salt and stir to combine. Add the quinoa and stir until everything is well incorporated. Fold in the black beans, (and the jalapeno pepper if your using it). You can serve it immediately, or let it sit for a bit for the flavors to meld. It tastes great chilled or even better at room temperature.
I served it on mesclun greens for a one dish meal.