Monday, November 21, 2011

High protein, high fiber, low fat

One of the shows which I loved to watch growing up was called Scientific American Frontiers and it played on the local PBS station.  It ran for quite a long time with Alan Alda as the host and covered a wide array of scientific and technological discoveries and topics.  It was the poor man's version of Nova, which also ran on PBS. The thing that was so great about Scientific American, was that with Alan Alda's interest played out with no acting, it helped people like me, who was just 23 at the time of the broadcast of this show.

So, the episode that made me think of writing about it was first shown in May of 2001 and was about diet and lifestyle.  This was something so slightly interesting but still not really important to me at the time but now, this seems like a great thought.  So, while watching the episode, a Doctor was telling our beloved host about a new theory he has in which he believes that people will live longer if they reduce their fat and calories.  I've heard this idea or one similar to what Dr. Roy Walford was suggesting, in which it is as if our bodies are like automotive engines. Like engines, there is an expected number of miles or years that it can work from until it gives up and dies.  For our bodies, the theory is that there is a calorie cap on how much our bodies can deal with before we quit.  Dr. Walord was suggesting that a diet where everything we need is consumed and the fats and extra calories are left out, would help us further achieve this goal.

Dr. Walford, gave a recipe to the show and even made a whole meal for Alan to try and they ate it while discussing metabolism facts.  So, I was thinking of this and then tried to track the salad recipe down.......which I did.

Dr. Walford's Supreme Vegetable Salad

Serves 4
1/3 cup dry chickpeas (garbanzo beans)
1/3 cup dry lentils
1/3 cup brown rice
1/3 cup wild rice
1/3 cup oat bran
1 medium sweet potato
3 spears broccoli or
5 cups florets
1 carrot
3/4 cup raw mushrooms
6 cups (1 large head) romaine lettuce
1/2 cup parsley
1 large red pepper
2 medium zucchini or other summer squash
1 medium tomato
1/4 small head red cabbage
1 medium onion
16 ounces commercially prepared salsa, mild or spicy
4 tblsp balsamic vinegar
2 tblsp olive oil
1 hard boiled egg
3 ounces tomato paste 

Soak garbanzo beans for several hours or overnight.
Discard soak water.
Combine garbanzos with lentils and add enough water to a 2-quart saucepan to generously cover beans.
Bring to boil, reduce heat and simmer for 30 minutes.
When cooked, drain any remaining water and cool.

The rices can be added to the beans, or cooked separately.
To cook with beans, add an additional 1 cup or boiling water, the brown and wild rice to the simmering beans.
Simmer an additional 45 minutes. Add bran during the last 10 minutes.
Hardboil one egg.
Meanwhile, steam the sweet potato for approximately 15 minutes, or until soft.

Cool and slice into bite size pieces.
Steam the broccoli and carrot for 10 minutes, cool and slice into bite size pieces.
Slice mushrooms, tomato, red pepper, squash, and onion into bite size pieces.
Shred the cabbage and finely slice the parsley.
Break or cut lettuce into bite sizes.
In a large salad bowl, combine all vegetables.
Chop the egg and add to the vegetables.
Drain excess liquid from the salsa in a strainer and blend together salsa, tomato paste, balsamic vinegar, and olive oil.

Add to the bean-rice-vegetable mix and stir thoroughly.
Excellent served with a whole grain bread or pumpernickel roll.  
 Now, what I plan on doing, is trying this out and seeing how it turns out for me and my family.  I'm sure it is delicious with that much vegetables and other good stuff in it.

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