Busy, Busy, Busy!

Still getting to grips with all the recent changes. Still loving the house we have moved into although the smaller kitchen remains a challenge, but getting there. Still have bits of furniture to get and need to ‘dress’ the house with pictures and ornaments etc. I do prefer a simple uncluttered space though.

As usual I am starting this blog as I have for a while, continuing working through the alphabet delving deeper into the nutritional and health benefits of fruit and veg – we have reached N:

Nectarine – nutritional information for 1 medium fruit (information taken from very well fit.com:

  • Calories – 62
  • Fat – 0.5g
  • Carbohydrates – 15g
  • Fibre – 2.4g
  • Sugars – 11g
  • Protein – 1.5G
  • Vitamin A – 9.4% RDI (reference daily intake)
  • Vitamin C – 13% RDI
  • Vitamin B3 (Niacin) 6% RDI
  • Copper – 4% RDI
  • Potassium – 4% RDI

Health Benefits:

  • May lower risk of Obesity, Diabetes and Heart Disease – the antioxidants in nectarines are believed to offer health benefits by preventing or reducing the risk of these conditions (which are often associated with each other).
  • May slow growth of cancer cells – research has found that the polyphenols in nectarines reduced the proliferation of Estero genes- independent breast cancer cells in test tubes by 50%, leading to the suggestion they may offer a protective benefit against certain breast cancers.
  • May lower Cholesterol – the antioxidant compounds in nectarines not only help lower vascular inflammation, improving circulation and blood pressure, but can also prevent the oxidation of low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol, the type associated with atherosclerosis and coronary artery disease.
  • Please note, these are potential benefits, there have been few human studies investigating the dietary impact of nectarines on any of these conditions.
Refreshing Nectarines

As in all my blog posts, the information relating to the in-depth look at a particular fruit or veg is for guidance only. I am no doctor or trained nutritionist although I know more about nutrition since adopting a wfpb lifestyle. I would always advocate individuals do their own research and seek guidance from professionals. What I can tell you, is following a wfpb lifestyle is the best thing I have ever done.

In a chat with My sister this week, she reminded me that sometimes we don’t have time to make complicated meals and she recalled I’d previously mentioned 5 ingredient recipes. I remembered that I had indeed downloaded a small pamphlet on this subject, but could I find it – no! So, clicked on Amazon (no, I don’t benefit in any way from mentioning Amazon), but Amazon and Google are my go to tools for information and sourcing obscure products – like the Ras El Hanout – couldn’t find it in my local supermarket so I ordered it and it was delivered from Amazon the next day. Likewise, the book – “5 ingredient Plant-Based Cookbook by HAPPYHEALTHYGREEN.LIFE – (fits in with my ‘keeping it simple’ strategy) was ordered and delivered the next day. The first recipe that caught my eye was Moroccan Chickpea Soup which I made immediately – see below:

Ingredients:

  • 600g/3 cups chickpeas, cooked or canned
  • 1 medium onion (minced)
  • 1 clove garlic (minced)
  • 360g/2 cups tomato cubes (I used a can of chopped tomatoes including the juice)
  • 20g/2 tablespoons Ras El Hanout
  • 480 ml/2 cups water

That’s six ingredients including the water, but who’s counting?

This recipe includes Ras El Hanout – had to Google this! Its a spice blend consisting of Allspice, Sweet Paprika, Black Pepper, Dehydrated Garlic, Coriander, Hot Chilli Pepper, Cumin, Cinnamon, Ginger, Nutmeg, Cardamom, Cloves and salt – a great combination of flavours and much easier dispensing from one pot rather than all the individual spices.

In a large pot on a medium-high heat, add the water, onion and garlic. When boiled turn the heat down to medium
Add the chickpeas and the Ras El Hanout spices and cook, stirring occasionally for 5 minutes
After 5 minutes, turn the heat down to a simmer
Add the tomato cubes (I added a tin of chopped tomatoes including the juice), cover the pot with a lid and simmer for 10 minutes
The finished dish garnished with a slice of lemon and chopped coriander – simple, easy to make and tastes delicious

The Moroccan Chickpea Soup recipe shown above serves 4 and contains the following per serving:

  • Calories – 260
  • Carbs – 44.2g
  • Fat – 2.4g
  • Protein – 15.3g
  • Fibre – 16.7g
  • Sugar – 6.5G

If you follow or have read my blog before, you will know I follow ‘fatmanrants’ on Facebook and this week they were talking about calorie density. I’ve been guilty in the past of saying as long as you eat wfpb you can eat as much as you want. Not strictly true, because some wfpb food is more calorific than others. So, if you are looking to lose weight you do need to take calorie density into account. For instance, greens topped with a cup of cooked lentils is 200 calories but 10 cooked potatoes would be 1000 calories – both options are plant based but with the first you will be in calorie deficit and in a good position to lose weight. Moving your body through exercise of course, will counteract some of the calories and is beneficial to your health whether you want to lose weight or not. In terms of calorie density, I have chopped nuts on my breakfast every morning but only a small amount because I know nuts are high in calories.

If I feel I’ve overdone the calories one day I’ll cut back the next day. With wfpb, I feel I have the ability to monitor my calorie intake and make adjustments naturally and easily. Unlike previous diets when I would just compound a “bad diet day” with another and another undoing all the work I had done to lose weight.

I hope the information I provide in my blog is useful and also inspires others to look at how they can eat healthy food that supports good health.

Please continue to support my blog through reading, sharing, following and commenting on the content. Your support is very much appreciated.

Published by smith57angel

Passionate about a Whole food plant based lifestyle. After years of yo-yo dieting I decided to tackle my weight problem once and for all. The difference this time being I focused on my health in terms of what I was putting in to my body. Health improved and weight reduced.

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