Last update: 19-Dec-2013 11:52 pm
Thursday, December 19, 2013
Trinidad & Tobago Guardian Online
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The first steps to becoming healthy ‘Clean eating’
There seems to be a “get healthy” drive on as people are feeling the negative effects of improper nutrition on their bodies. America is obese and Trinidad is not far behind, mainly because we mirror the North American lifestyle. We are being bombarded with information about what to eat and what not to eat. The latest target for the healthy eating lobby is gluten. Suddenly gluten is everyone’s worst enemy. We are urged to stay away from gluten, which essentially means cut out all wheat products. Eliminate all “white foods” like white sugar, white flour and white rice.
If you eliminate gluten from your diet, it’s likely that when you do ingest something with gluten, you will certainly have an adverse reaction, because your body won’t know how to deal with it. Don’t eliminate something from your diet completely unless you are certain you are allergic to it.
Let’s face it, it’s hard to make sense of all these nutritional guidelines, if you’ve grown accustomed to certain eating patterns and a particular lifestyle. But eating a diet full of processed foods will certainly lead to disease in the long run. The key to good health is clean eating and it’s easier than you think. Start by removing all processed foods from your diet. Eat clean foods, adopt the “farm to table” regime. Shop at the local markets once per week; buy fresh green vegetables, provisions, and fruits. Eat local fish and meat, and cook every day. Stay away from artificial sweeteners and flavourings, and add sea salt sparingly. Remove sugary soft drinks and desserts from your diet. Eat fresh fruit instead.
Include beans, brown rice, quinoa, whole wheat cous cous and pasta. Try to bake your own bread and incorporate different types of grains like spelt, amaranth, oatmeal, and cornmeal into your breads. Basically, stop eating fast food and try to buy organic when you can. It’s not totally about nutrition, health includes stress management. Cut down your stress levels by engaging in an enjoyable fitness regime.I am certain if you make these positive changes in your lifestyle, you will lose weight, become healthier and have loads of energy too.
CARIBBEAN GRILLED FISH BULJOL
2 lbs fresh fish fillets
1 tsp minced chives
Salt and black pepper
1 tsp minced garlic
2 tbsps olive oil
1 large onion, thinly sliced
2 pimento peppers, chopped
1 large tomato, chopped
2 eggs, hard boiled
2 tbsps chopped chadon beni or cilantro
Marinate fish in chives, salt, black pepper and garlic and olive oil.
Place in heatproof platter and broil for four minutes per side.
Remove and flake gently with a fork, place in a large bowl.
In a non stick sauté pan, heat 2 tbsps olive oil and sauté onion and pepper for only one minute.
Remove and add to fish, add tomatoes, and toss. Season with salt if needed.
Place fish onto platter, decorate with lettuce and egg wedges.
Season with salt and pepper
Sprinkle on chadon beni or cilantro.
Enjoy with coconut bake.
Serves four to six.
WHOLE GRAIN PASTA WITH
FRESH TOMATO SAUCE and GRILLED CHICKEN
For the sauce
2 tbsps olive oil
1 large onion’ chopped
4 cloves garlic, peeled and chopped
1 carrot, peeled and finely chopped
1 can tinned tomatoes (28 oz tin)
Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
2 basil leaves
1/2 cup chopped fresh parsley
For the chicken
2 chicken breasts, seasoned with one tsp minced garlic, pepper and salt
1 lb whole grain pasta twists
Feta cheese and black olives for garnish
Boil pasta according to package directions. Drain, do not rinse.
Make the sauce
Heat olive oil in a heavy saucepan, add onion and garlic and sauté until fragrant, add carrots and cook for five minutes longer.
Add tomatoes and break up with the spoon.
Season with salt, pepper and add sugar. Add basil and continue to stir.
Cover and simmer the sauce for about 40 minutes to one hour stirring occasionally.
Taste and adjust seasonings. Add parsley.
Make the chicken
Preheat grill pan, brush chicken with olive oil, then grill for five minutes per side.
Slice and add to tomato sauce. Stir.
Toss with pasta, garnish with cheese and olives and serve.
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