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THE WORLD OF LUCK: LUCKY CHARMS VS. LUCKY HERBS!

November 17, 2015

 

The "world of luck" can be seen and viewed through more than one sphere.  Just think from lottery winners, to be born in a loving and safe home to be blessed with perfect health, to landing a dream job or just being happily in love with the forever after story. However, for most this is not the case, because in reality there is always change, adversity, and nothing is perfect even if it appears to be. So if you ask me what luck is , for most including myself  it’s about making things happen, and taking accountability for your chosen path. The idea of being lucky for many often comes from years of hard work, dedication, determination and a strong belief within to always see the glass half full rather than half empty, rather than always feeling sorry for the past circumstances.  Likewise, In the world of food and nutrition, there is more than luck when it comes to eating healthy. However, there is an exception and it pertains to "Lucky foods!" Of course my memories with the concept of lucky foods started with my nostalgic days of spoonfuls of Lucky Charms ! Every morning I would wake up strategically maneuvering the General Mill’s box so my cereal bowl would yield twice the amount of sugary marshmallows than nutritious oats. However, these days I more about maneuvering whole food recipes with lucky herbs that are magically delicious!

 

Can Lucky Herbs like Basil, Oregano, Mint, Thyme, and rosemary live up to it’s claim of being magically flavorful! Well in the world of health and culinary arts, these herbs hit dishes right on the spot, adding fresh flavor,  tempting aroma, and vivid color and design to food.  The true magic and power of herbs lies in their wealth of protective polyphenols plant compounds with potent antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects. Research has indicated that polyphenols in herbs help combat such diseases as cancer, heart disease, Alzheimer’s, diabetes and more. Polyphenols are anti-microbial, so they can help protect us from harmful bacteria as well. Although there is a debate that one must have large concentrated solutions of herbs to reap the benefits there is still plenty of evidence that indicates when herbs are cooked and eaten as part of a regular meal one can stll get their benefits.  Read on  understand how and why lucky herbs should be part of your everyday plan!

 

 

The following information is taken from the below excerpt

 

http://www.fitnessmagazine.com/recipes/healthy-eating/nutrition/health-benefits-of-spices-herbs/

 

 

Cinnamon

Health Boost: Can lower blood sugar, triglycerides, LDL, and total cholesterol in people with type 2 diabetes. Aim for one-fourth to one-half teaspoon of cinnamon twice a day.

Get Cooking: Dip berries or bananas in low-fat sour cream, then in a mix of 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon and 1/4 cup brown sugar.

 

Turmeric

Health Boost: Contains curcumin, which can inhibit the growth of cancer cells. Try to have 500 to 800 milligrams a day, says Bharat Aggarwal, PhD, a professor of cancer medicine at the University of Texas M.D. Anderson Cancer Center.

Get Cooking: For an Indian flavor, add 1/4 teaspoon turmeric to water when cooking 1 cup rice.

 

Rosemary

Health Boost: Stops gene mutations that could lead to cancer and may help prevent damage to the blood vessels that raise heart attack risk.

Get Cooking: For a delicious chicken rub, combine 2 teaspoons rosemary leaves with 2 teaspoons seasoning salt and 1/2 teaspoon thyme leaves.

 

 

Garlic

Health Boost: Destroys cancer cells and may disrupt the metabolism of tumor cells, says Karen Collins, RD, nutrition advisor to the American Institute for Cancer Research. "Studies suggest that one or two cloves weekly provide cancer-protective benefits."

Get Cooking: "Let garlic sit for 10 to 15 minutes after chopping and before cooking so the active form of the protective phytochemicals develops," says Collins. Saute fresh garlic over low heat and mix with pasta, red pepper flakes, and Parmesan cheese.

 

Paprika

Health Boost: Contains capsaicin, whose anti-inflammatory and antioxidant effects may lower the risk of cancer (also found in cayenne and red chili peppers). There's no specific recommended dose, but moderation is probably the best way to go.

Get Cooking: Combine 1 1/2 teaspoons paprika, 1/2 teaspoon ground thyme and 1/2 teaspoon ground red pepper to liven up popcorn.

 

Ginger

Health Boost: Can decrease motion sickness and nausea; may also relieve pain and swelling associated with arthritis. Doses used in clinical trials range from 500 to 2,000 mg of powdered ginger. (A quarter-size piece of fresh root contains about 1,000 mg.) More than 6,000 mg can cause stomach irritation. Ginger can also hinder blood clotting, so if you're about to have surgery or are taking blood thinners or aspirin, be sure to talk to your doctor first.

Get Cooking: For motion sickness, try having one or two pieces of crystallized, or candied, ginger. Make sure ginger is listed as an ingredient; some candied products or ginger ales contain a small amount or a synthetic form. You can also add 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger to vegetables like carrots and sweet potatoes, as well as fresh fruit (especially peaches).

 

Oregano

Health Boost: A USDA study found that, gram for gram, oregano has the highest antioxidant activity of 27 fresh culinary herbs.

Get Cooking: To spice up tomato soup, add 3/4 teaspoon oregano to 1 can; add 1/2 teaspoon to 2 cups pasta or pizza sauce. Substitute 1 teaspoon dried oregano for 2 teaspoons fresh.

 

WAYS TO COOK WITH HERBS

 

  • Start by adding a small amount of the herb to a dish and gradually build up to a desired flavor.

  •  Unlike dried herbs, fresh herbs should be added at the end of cooking in order to maximize flavor.

  • When buying herbs, look for strong smelling, brightly colored leaves that are free of brown spots. Skip plants that are drooping or limp.

  •  To keep herbs fresh longer, wrap them in a damp paper towel and place in a bag or airtight container in the refrigerator and store for 3–4 days.

  • If a recipe calls for a dried herb, use 1 tbsp of fresh for each tsp of dried herbs.

 

 The above was taken from  the below

 

http://www.mensfitness.com/nutrition/what-to-eat/5-ways-to-cook-with-fresh-herbs

 

 

 

  ZENONAPLATE RED PESTO BASIL SAUCE EDAMAME PASTA WITH CALIFORNIA OREGANO VEGGIES (VEGAN, GLUTEN FREE)

 Time to Cook: 25 minutes : Serves Four Servings : Per  Serving 

 

NUTRITIONAL INFORMATION 

 Sugar: 8.6 grams of Natural Sugars

 

MACRO BREAK DOWN

 

CARB: Edamame Noodles, Veggies

PROTEIN: Edamame Noodles

FIBER: Veggies, Edamame Noodles

HEALTHY FAT: Avocado, Olive Oil, Coconut Milk

 

HERBS: BASIL AND OREGANO

 

Ingredients

 

Frozen bag of California Blend Mix

Olive Oil

Rice Vinegar Lite

Salt

Pepper

Edamame Noodles

Cherry Tomatoes

Fresh Oregano

 

Sauce

 

1 ½ Cup of cherry tomatoes

half an avocado

2 cloves of garlic

2 tablespoons of red pesto

1/3 cup of almond milk

1/3 cup of basil

¼ tsp of salt

 

 

Directions

Boil Noodles for 20 minutes until soft and then put in a strainer. Then turn on burner to medium to high and oil the sauté pan. Pour the California mix frozen vegetables on the pan. Cook for a minute in half before adding a few tablespoons of rice vinegar and fresh oregano to the vegetables. Cook until soft and no longer frozen and set aside.  Then in a food processer add all the above ingredients to the sauce and blend.  Once  the sauce has been mixed and it’s in evenly form set aside. Take 3 to 3 ½ cups of the noodles from the strainer and put on the sauté pan that has one table spoon of olive oil  on the pan. Heat for about 30 seconds before adding the sauce and then stir around until sauce is evenly distributed and then add the vegetables and mix around. To finish the plate garnish with basil and oregano.

 

 

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