Eating Healthier

Discussion in 'Health and Fitness' started by expiated, Jul 17, 2020.

  1. expiated


    The shipping for buying all this stuff online was going to cost too much for a frugal guy like me, and there was no way I was going to find it all at any grocery store or even a modest health food store, so I finally went ahead and put forth enough diligence to find an excellent health food story here in my town (a little south of Los Angeles) called Lazy Acres (Natural) Market, which had all the hard-to-find stuff (like agar agar) and where I didn't have to worry about whether the particular container of dates I purchased would be too dry or overly ripe (as I read in reviews about dates purchased at Walmart).
    #31     Jul 25, 2020
  2. expiated


    Microwave Oatmeal Raisin Cookie

    I’ve never liked dates, but since raisins add a nice sweetness to my salads and other dishes, I thought perhaps the dates Dr. Fuhrman includes in his recipes in place of sugar might do the same. I experimented with working with the Medjool dates I purchased yesterday, and while I found the flavor tolerable, I still did not like the mealy texture that dates have (to me) at all, so I will be exploring ways to overcome this in whatever I make.

    To avoid having to use the oven, I went online to look for microwave oatmeal cookie recipes, and found one for a single cookie that called for:
    • 1/4 cup quick oats not instant or flavored
    • 2 tsp white whole wheat flour or brown rice flour
    • 1/4 tsp baking powder
    • 1 tsp brown sugar
    • pinch cinnamon
    • 2 TBSP applesauce no added sugar
    • 1/4 tsp vanilla extract
    • 1/2 TBSP chocolate chips or raisins or nuts
    • 1/8 teaspoon avocado oil or other neutral oil
    If I reduce Fuhrman’s recipe to a fourth of the original amounts, I’m looking at…
    • 1/2 ripe banana, mashed
    • 3/8 cup old-fashioned rolled oats
    • 1/8 cup raisins
    • 1/12 cup chopped walnuts
    • 1/8 teaspoon vanilla extract
    • 1/32 teaspoon cinnamon
    Using what I have, I’m going to try substituting…
    • One or two dates for the teaspoon of brown sugar
    • One quarter to one half of a ripe banana instead of two tablespoons of applesauce
    • Two tablespoons of ground flax seed in place of the two tablespoons of whole wheat flour
    So then, I will also need to add a pinch of cinnamon, 1/8 teaspoon vanilla extract, 1/4 tablespoons raisins, and 1/4 tablespoons chopped walnuts. (Missing will be the baking powder and the avocado oil.)

    Supposedly quick oats are used so the cookies aren’t too chewy, but since it’s my understanding that the nutrients remaining in quick oats are reduced, I’m going to go ahead and take my chances.

    Also, I don’t know why Fuhrman says to soak the raisins for thirty minutes unless it's so they don’t get dry after 13 minutes in the 325°F oven, so I think I’ll skip this step at least the first time around.

    I’ll mix the oats, cinnamon and flax seeds first, which should combine easily. Then I’ll mash the dates into a paste which I’ll spread on a saucer, and pour the dry mixture on top, subsequently working it into the sticky date mush.

    I’ll then try stirring the mashed banana and vanilla in last, shape it all into a big cookie, and see what happens if I microwave it on high for 60-75 seconds.
    #32     Jul 26, 2020
  3. expiated


    Since I had the dates in the refrigerator, I figured they’d be cold and stiff, so I microwaved them for 30 seconds to make them easier to work with and found that a beneficial byproduct was that this made it relatively easy to remove a lot of the skin, of which I would like to include as little as possible when mashing the dates into a sticky paste.

    I opted to mix in the ground flax seed first since it is almost a powder and I figured it would do the most thorough job of “breaking up” the date paste, which I think was true. I then added the cinnamon and oats, and a bit of cocoa as well.

    This concoction was extremely stiff, so I figured if I tried adding the raisins at that point they would get all mashed up by the effort and I had better add them after the shredded apples for that reason. (None of the convenience markets around my house had bananas yesterday, so I shredded up a small Fuji apple instead).

    It was after adding the apple that the mass finally became easier to manipulate and no longer so sticky. Though its taste was acceptable , what I got after microwaving it for 75 seconds could hardly be called a cookie, so I put the (two) paddies in a pan with some milk and added a few more oats to turn it into a hot cereal.

    However, this returned the dates to a consistency that I do not like, which I addressed by adding more raisins and some dried fruit and nut mix.


    Next time, after mixing in the shredded apple, I will add a whole lot of raisins and chopped walnuts to make some sort of “Raisin Cluster” and see if this makes a nice snack for me with less impact from the flavor and texture of the dates, if any at all. (Putting it in the microwave does not really seem necessary.)
    Last edited: Jul 27, 2020
    #33     Jul 27, 2020
  4. expiated


    Dr. Fuhrman includes currants in his recipes, but to me, they just look like raisins. So, what's the difference?

    Raisins, sultanas and currants are different types of dried grapes that are rich in fiber, potassium and antioxidants.

    Raisins are made from a range of grape varieties. They are dried naturally and are usually the largest of the three.

    Sultanas are made from seedless green grapes. They are often dipped in a solution prior to drying, which speeds up the process. They are often the juiciest and lightest in color.

    Currants are made from small grape varieties. They are dried naturally and are the smallest and darkest of the three.

    (from healthline dot com)
    #34     Jul 27, 2020
  5. expiated


    Vanilla Cream Topping for Fruit
    Serves 8

    1 vanilla bean, split lengthwise, or 1 teaspoon (alcohol-free) vanilla extract
    1 and 1/3 cups raw macadamia or cashew nuts
    1 cup soy, hemp, or almond milk
    2/3 cup dates, pitted

    If using vanilla bean, scrape pulp and seeds from pod with a dull knife; discard pod. Blend vanilla pulp and seeds, nuts, nondairy milk, and dates together in a high-powered blender until smooth and creamy. Serve over strawberries, other berries, or fruit. May also be used as a topping for fruit sorbets or baked desserts.

    Note: For a Chocolate Cream Topping, add 2 tablespoons of natural non-alkalized cocoa power.
    #35     Jul 28, 2020
  6. expiated


    Overcoming the Personality of Dates

    I was surprised when I first started using 100% natural unsweetened cocoa a few months back at how bitter is was, and since then have opted to use it in relatively small amounts. However, based on the Optional Topping recipe for the Fudgy Black Bean Brownies, this morning I decided to add cocoa in about equal amounts to the two dates I was using (since I was not going to add any apples to my mixture today and did not have bananas on hand).


    This worked pretty well for me, resulting in the date texture and flavor no longer being an issue. I debated adding just a touch of milk to the date, flaxseed, oats, cinnamon, cocoa, raisin, peanut, almond and cashew mixture to make it a little bit easier to blend, but ultimately decided against it. Nonetheless, if I can find something stiff yet creamy to hold it all together tightly, I think I would find this to be a relatively satisfying breakfast-snack.
    #36     Jul 31, 2020
  7. expiated


    Why Flax Seeds?

    I was curious to know why Dr. Fuhrman includes flax and chia seeds in so many of his recipes, and therefore reviewed the information I read in the past to find out.

    It seems that flax seeds, hemp seeds, sesame seeds and walnuts are rich in omega-3 fatty acids, which are beneficial for heart and brain health. Also, the doctor writes that seeds and nuts act like a fat sponge in the digestive tract, preventing all their fat calories from being absorbed. But the best part is that these fat magnets pull out the unhealthy fats from the bloodstream, increasing the cholesterol content of the stool, carrying the bad fats out of the body, and allowing the healthy fats to stay in.

    Moreover, flax, chia, and sesame seeds are rich in lignans, which are plant phytoestrogens that protect against cancer.

    Furthermore, hemp, chia, and flax seeds (and walnuts as well) are rich in the omega-3 fatty acid ALA (alpha-linolenic acid). research indicates that the regular consumption of ALA reduces the risk of cardiovascular disease and cancer.
    #37     Jul 31, 2020
  8. expiated


    Vanilla Coconut Nice Cream
    Serves 4

    20 Walnut halves
    1/2 vanilla bean, split lengthwise, or 1 teaspoon (alcohol-free) vanilla extract
    4 medium bananas, frozen
    1/2 cup unsweetened creamed coconut (see Note below)
    1/2 cup soy, hemp, or almond milk

    Using a high-powered blender, blend walnuts on high speed until the consistency of dust. If using a vanilla bean, scrape pulp and seeds from pod with a dull knife and add them to the blender along with the remaining ingredients (discard vanilla bean pod). Vlend on very high speed until silky smooth. Serve immediately, or store in freezer for later use.

    Note: Creamed coconut is unsweetened dehydrated coconut meat ground to a semisolid creamy paste.
    #38     Aug 2, 2020
  9. Chliskip


    Great! I am already looking forward to your healthy recipes :)
    #39     Aug 3, 2020
  10. expiated


    Summer Fruit Pie
    Serves 4

    For Pie Shell:
    • 1 cup almonds
    • 1 cup dates, pitted (Medjool, if available)
    • 2 tablespoons unsweetened shredded coconut
    For Filling:
    • 2-3 bananas, sliced
    • 1 teaspoon lemon juice
    • 2 kiwis, sliced
    • 1 quart organic strawberries, sliced
    • 1 pint blueberries
    • 1/2 cup vanilla, soy, hemp, for almond milk
    • 1 and 1/4 cups frozen strawberries, or 1 pint fresh organic strawberries
    • 2 dates, pitted
    Make pie shell by placing almonds in a food processor or high-powered blender and processing until very fine. Add dates and process until chopped and mixed well. Remove from food processor and knead shredded coconut in by hand. Add a small amount of water if needed to hold mixture together. Press into 9-inch pie plate to form shell.

    To make the filling, spread bananas on the crust, pressing down slightly. Sprinkle lemon juice over bananas. Place kiwis, strawberries, and blueberries over bananas. If desired, we reserve some fruit to decorate top of pie.

    Add nondairy milk, frozen strawberries, and dates in a blender and blend until smooth. Pour blended mixture over the fruit. Decorate with additional fruit as desired. Cover and freeze for at least two hours before serving.

    (from The End of Dieting by Joel Fuhrman, M.D.)
    #40     Aug 3, 2020