“Summer Of The Superfood”: Salmon (4 of 50)

We’re wasting no time; the “Summer Of The Superfood” continues with our selection #4: SALMON!

 

Salmon1

 

 To understand the nutritional significance, we need to go a bit more in-depth than usual; but we promise, everything we say in this article will only make you better aware of how awesome salmon really is for achieving your best health! Not too long ago, people came to believe that fat was a horrible, murderous monster, and that the ideal healthy diet was completely absent of fat; we’ll call it, “the era of fat-free”. You know what we’re talking about… Salad dressings, cakes, casseroles, soups, even FRUIT JUICES proudly marketed themselves as being “fat-free”. Basically, we all needed an education in dietary fat and, bit by bit, we got one. In a nutshell, we learned that we derive four basic types of fat from food: saturated fat, trans-fat (partially hydrogenated oils), monounsaturated fat, and polyunsaturated fat. The news on saturated fat hasn’t changed a bit: saturated fat—which is found primarily in red meat, full-fat dairy products, and some tropical oils—has well-established negative health effects, such as increasing your risk of diabetes, coronary heart disease, stroke, some cancers, and obesity. Trans-fats— which are listed on food labels as “partially hydrogenated vegetable oil”—are also bad, probably even worse than saturated fat. Trans-fats were created by chemists seeking a fat that would store better than animal fats. (Avoid these whenever humanly possible!)

 

 Now, let’s switch gears and remember that there are also GOOD fats. The good guys in the fat family are the monounsaturated fats—the kinds found in olive and canola oils. These fats not only protect your cardiovascular system, they also lower the risk of “insulin resistance”, which is a physiologic state that can lead to diabetes & possibly cancer. And to round it off, we come to polyunsaturated fatty acids. Both omega-6 & omega-3, are the so-called essential polyunsaturated fatty acids (EFA’s). Our bodies can’t manufacture these two fats, and therefore we have to rely on getting them from our diet to avoid being deficient in these fats that are essential for life. Omega-6 fatty acids are currently overabundant in the typical Western diet; we get them from corn, safflower, cottonseed, and sunflower oils.

 

Did you know… Salmon live in both freshwater & saltwater regions? Truly a highly adaptive, exceptional fish!

 

  Unfortunately, many of us are currently DEFICIENT in the omega-3 class of essential fatty acids. Omega-3 fatty acids—the ones that help make salmon a superfood—haven’t been included in adequate amounts of our diet, partly because we’ve lacked knowledge, and also because they’ve been “processed out” of our modern diet. That’s why this superfood is so special, and is included in our “Top 10”, because salmon is one of the richest, tastiest, readily available sources of marine-derived omega-3 fatty acids! Period. Tasty25 recommends including wild salmon in your diet 2-4 times a week, to achieve optimal protection against a multitude of diseases that have been associated with low intakes of these critical fats. Do this, and you’ll be well on your way to becoming a food conscious individual! – Tasty25 Staff

 

 Wanna know a few ways to incorporate salmon into your diet? Check out these great Tasty25 creations that contain salmon:

 

“Summer Of The Superfood”: Quinoa (3 of 50)

The “Summer Of The Superfood” moves along, with our selection #3 of 50: QUINOA!

 

Quinoa

 

 Quinoa is a superfood that has become nutritionally renowned for its protein content; yet while it does have a decent amount of the good stuff, it’s not actually the amount of protein that’s so impressive. Instead, it’s the type of protein. Quinoa has the perfect balance of all nine amino acids essential for human nutrition. This type of complete protein is rarely found in plant foods, though common in many types of meats.

 

 This alone would make us consider quinoa as a premier superfood on our list; but wait, there’s more! One thing that people often overlook about quinoa, is that it contains almost TWICE as much fiber as most other grains. Fiber is most widely known to relieve constipation (yikes), and also helps to prevent heart disease by reducing high blood pressure & diabetes. Fiber lowers cholesterol and glucose levels, may lower your risk of developing hemorrhoids, and may help you to lose weight. (Quick Tip: It takes a longer time to chew quinoa than does other foods, because it makes you feel fuller for longer and is less “energy dense,” which means it has fewer calories for the same volume of food)

 

Fact Time: There are 111 calories in each 1/2 cup of cooked quinoa.

 

 In comparison to cereal grasses like wheat, quinoa is much higher in fat content, and can provide valuable amounts of heart-healthy fats like monounsaturated fat. Quinoa can also provide small amounts of the omega-3 fatty acid, alpha-linolenic acid (ALA). Given this higher fat content, researchers initially assumed that quinoa would be more susceptible to oxidation and resulting nutrient damage; however, recent studies have shown that quinoa does not get oxidized as rapidly as might be expected given its higher fat content. This finding is GREAT news from a nutritional standpoint! In a nutshell, the processes of boiling, simmering, and steaming quinoa do not appear to significantly compromise the quality of quinoa’s fatty acids, allowing us to enjoy its cooked texture and flavor while maintaining this nutrient benefit. Food scientists have speculated that it is the diverse array of antioxidants found in quinoa—including various members of the vitamin E family like alpha-, beta-, gamma- and delta-tocopherol as well as flavonoids like quercetin and kaempferol—that contribute to this oxidative protection. At Tasty25, we recommend 1/2 cup to 1 cup of cooked quinoa, along with fresh veggies and/or a lean meat protein, such as chicken; do this, and you’ll be well on your way to becoming a food conscious individual! – Tasty25 Staff

 

 Wanna know a few ways to incorporate quinoa into your diet? Check out these great Tasty25 creations that contain quinoa:

 

“Summer Of The Superfood”: Blueberries (2 of 50)

Many of you will scratch your heads at first, but our #2 selection in our “Summer Of The Superfood” series goes to BLUEBERRIES!

 

Blueberries

 

 We know what you’re thinking; “of all of the foods you could have selected, why these?” Well, you’re not alone when it comes to underestimating blueberries; for many years, nutritionists & researchers ignored the tiny blueberry because of its relatively low vitamin C content. However, what they failed to understand was that the health benefits of blueberries stem mainly from their incredibly high levels of antioxidant phytonutrients.

 

 “Phytonutrients” are non-vitamin, non-mineral components of food that have significant healthful benefits. There are literally THOUSANDS of different types of phytonutrients, and each is unique in both its physical characteristics and its function in the body.

 

Did you know… Although their known best for their anti-aging properties, blueberries, while tiny, are a powerful figure-friendly eat also: A 1-cup serving is only 80 calories, and actually helps you feel fuller for longer with 4 grams of dietary fiber. Interesting.

 

 Countless studies have shown that phytonutrients aids cell communicate in the body more efficiently, prevent harmful mutations at the cellular level, prevent the spread & production of cancer cells, much more… In fact there is still much more that experts are learning about the powers of phytonutrients every single day. Now here is why blueberries are simply amazing… Blueberries are so rich in phytonutrients, that even though they are not filled with the antioxidant Vitamins C & E, they still provide as much antioxidant protection to the body as 1,733 milligrams of vitamin E, and more than 1200 milligrams of vitamin C! That’s OVER 10 to 15 TIMES MORE THAN YOUR DAILY RECOMMENDED INTAKE! Pretty crazy, eh?  We recommend 1 to 2 cups of fresh blueberries whenever you can, to fully take advantage of the great health benefits this superfood can give; do this, and you’ll be well on your way to becoming a food conscious individual! – Tasty25 Staff

 

 Wanna know a few ways to incorporate blueberries into your diet? Check out these great Tasty25 creations that contain blueberries:

 

 

“Summer Of The Superfood”: Oats (1 of 50)

It’s summertime, and we wanted to give our food conscious community a bit of “summer-school” to keep us all educated about the things we put into our bodies, and what we’re getting out of it. There are tons of sources, from stores, fitness & health gurus, all the way down to your next door neighbor that claim to know exactly what “the best” foods are for you to eat; but who really knows? Well have no fear! Our team has hand-selected 50 “superfoods” that we’ll talk about each day through mid July, as we learn a bit of the nutrition that goes along with these incredible foods we recommend chowing down on.

 

So, without further ado, here’s #1 of 50 in our “Summer Of The Superfood” series: OATS.

 

Oats2

 

 Before we jump too deep into how great this superfood is for your body, it’s important to know that any food made from wheat, rice, oats, cornmeal, barley or another cereal grain, is a grain product. The common oat is one of the most common species of grains that we consume each day.

 

 Back in 1997, the FDA allowed a label to be placed on oat foods, which claimed that there was an association between eating a diet rich in whole oats, and a reduced risk for coronary heart disease—our nation’s number one killer. The overall conclusion from this review was that oats could lower serum cholesterol levels, and that “the main active ingredient that yielded this exciting positive effect is the soluble fiber found in oats called “beta glucan.” (Beta-glucans are a diverse group of molecules, which can be found in the “bran” of oats, and aid in normalizing cholesterol levels in the body.)

 

Quick Tip: Oats are rich in fiber, so a serving can help you feel full throughout the day! Just a half of a cup packs 4.6 grams of “resistant starch”, which is a healthy carb that boosts metabolism and burns fat. Pretty awesome, eh?

 

 The combination of all the nutrients found in oats, makes them one of the most outstanding superfoods, and a big reason why we chose to talk about this one first! In addition to their power to reduce disease and extend your health span, oats are also great for practical reasons: they’re inexpensive, readily available, and incredibly easy to incorporate into your life; which is what we’re all about at Tasty25 Magazine. We suggest eating a bowl of oatmeal for breakfast, and cooking with oat bran or oat flour as a practical way to get a solid dose of this hearty superfood. Remember to eat a bowl of oats regularly, and you’ll be on your way to becoming a food conscious individual! – Tasty25 Staff

 

 Wanna know a few ways to incorporate oats into your diet? Check out these great Tasty25 creations that contain oats:

 

Tasty25’s Nutrition Tip #8: 6 Tips On Maintaining A Healthy Salt Intake!

Salt is definitely one of our favorite seasonings to use, and the most common salt we use in our cooking is sodium chloride. Salt makes our food taste good, it preserves our food and we just can’t live without it; literally! Our bodies depend on sodium and chloride; Sodium regulates fluid and blood volume, helps our nerves send signals to each other, and chloride also maintains fluid and electrolyte balance*. 

 

Photo Credit: polarbearmitens.blogspot.com

 

It is very rare that a person is sodium chloride deficient, but it is very common that there is excess intake of the beloved duo. The largest source of sodium chloride is from foods during processing. An adverse effect of high sodium chloride in our diets is high blood pressure. Consistently maintaining high blood pressure can lead to cardiovascular complications, kidney disease, and stroke; high sodium chloride concentration can exacerbate diabetes and other metabolic diseases. The Institute of Medicine recommends 1.5g/day is the adequate intake for healthy adults. This amount is equivalent to only ONE teaspoon of sodium chloride per day!

 

Tasty25 Magazine has 6 helpful tips on how to daily maintain healthy salt intake:

 

  • Eat foods, cooked or raw, in their natural state. The natural taste of the food shines better if there is little to no salt added!

  • Use other spices and herbs to enhance the food’s flavor instead of salt.

  • If buying canned vegetables that are preserved in salt (look in the ingredients label), rinse the vegetables with water to get rid of the excess salt.

  • Drink a lot of water!

  • Exercise for at least 25-30 minutes a day to sweat.

  • Be sure to use iodized salt to help ward of iodine deficiency.

     

*Dietary Reference Intakes 2005

 


Thy Ho-Pham is Tasty25 Magazine’s nutrition expert & nutritional advisor. Thy has a Masters Degree in Nutrition from the prestigious Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland, OH.

Tasty25’s Nutrition Tip #7: The “F” Word; Fiber!

Hi Tasty25ers! Yea, that’s right, we’ve got Nutrition Tip #7 for you today! To follow up on our Vitamin D article, this Nutrition Tip will focus on the “F” word. And no, not the expletive… we’re talking about FIBER!

 

 

Fiber is nature’s broom! But let’s be honest, fiber doesn’t always have a good rep; however we want the members of our food conscious community to give fiber another chance. Fiber’s benefits outweigh its reputation; it’s not digested in the body, it’s passed through our system. As fiber passes through our bodies, properties of certain fibers delay gastric emptying, which means it causes delayed digestion and absorption. This makes us feel fuller for much longer! Having adequate fiber in our diet is a great way to maintain a healthy body weight, amongst other positives. Fiber also has many protective benefits as well, including protection against diabetes, diverticular disease, heart disease, and even colon cancer.

The National Academy of Sciences Institute of Medicine (IOM) sets the total fiber intake for adults 19-50 years at 38g/day for men and 25 g/day for women.  It is reduced to 30g/day and 21g/day for men and women, respectively, past the age of 50. And what do you know, fiber is naturally present in the majority of fruits, vegetables, grains and nuts that we eat! The table below lists some high fiber foods; learn and live all of this great information!

 

Food*

Measure

Fiber content/measure (g)

Navy Beans boiled w/out salt

1 cup

19.1

Black Beans boiled w/out salt

1 cup

15.4

Artichoke cooked w/out salt

1 cup

14.4

Dates

1 cup

14.2

Cornmeal, whole grain, yellow

1 cup

8.9

Frozen mixed veggies cooked w/out salt

1 cup

8.0

Raspberries, raw

1 cup

8.0

Oat Bran

1 cup

5.7

Pistachio nuts

1 oz (47 nuts)

2.8

*USDA National Nutrient Database for Standard Reference, Release 24



Thy Ho-Pham is Tasty25 Magazine’s nutrition expert & nutritional advisor. Thy has a Masters Degree in Nutrition from the prestigious Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland, OH.

Tasty25’s Nutrition Tip #6: Get Your Vitamin D!

Hi Tasty25ers! My name is Thy Ho-Pham, and I’m the new nutrition expert for Tasty25 Magazine! I’m really excited to join the Staff of Tasty25 in helping to grow our ever expanding food conscious community, and also to try some great healthy & delicious recipes just like you! To follow up with our Nutrition Tip #5 on Calcium, we want to encourage our food conscious community to follow our Nutrition Tip #6 and get adequate vitamin D along with calcium; they are dynamic partners in our bodies! 

 

 

 Vitamin D is needed in the body to maintain sufficient levels of calcium and phosphate so that bones can mineralize and stay strong. Insufficient amounts of vitamin D can lead to thin, brittle bones and potentially increase the risk of osteoporosis.  Those who are pregnant and are deficient in vitamin D put their infants at risk for nutritional rickets.

 Throughout the world, a major source of Vitamin D is the sun! Our bodies can synthesize vitamin D from direct sunlight.  How much an individual makes vitamin D depends on skin color, time spent in the sun, the seasons, and sunscreen. We encourage all of our members to go outside and be active in the sun; but if you are concerned about being out the sun too long, another way to get is from food or fortified products. Fish liver oils, fatty fish like salmon, trout, halibut, rockfish, and herring all contain high amounts of vitamin D. If fish is not to your taste, eating foods fortified with vitamin D such as whole grain cereals, juice, milk, certain dairy products, and other milk substitutes.

 

“If you are concerned about being insufficient in vitamin D, please talk to you doctor before taking any supplements or drastically changing your diet.”Thy

 


 Thy Ho-Pham is Tasty25 Magazine’s nutrition expert & nutritional advisor. Thy has a Masters Degree in Nutrition from the prestigious Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland, OH.