Uncategorized, Foods

SPINACH FRITTATA

Health and Wellness Associates
EHS Telehealth

 

SPINACH FRITTATA

 

spinach-fritatta

This recipe goes heavy on the spinach, a nutrient-dense green rich in carotenoids and vitamin K, as well as magnesium, iron, and copper. A frittata travels and reheats well, making it handy for packed breakfasts, lunches, or on-the-go snacks. You can even make this recipe in muffin tins for extra portability. For a Mexican-inspired version, add seasoned, cooked ground beef, thinly sliced jalapeños, and cilantro.

 

 

 

Makes two servings

Prep time: 10 minutes

Cook time: 10 to 15 minutes

 

6 large eggs

¼ tsp. salt

¼ tsp. black pepper

2 tbs. ghee or clarified butter

½ onion, diced

1 cup diced, seeded tomato

4 or 5 tomato slices for topping the frittata

5 cups fresh baby spinach (approximately 9 oz.), roughly chopped

Grated zest and juice of ¼ lemon

Set oven to broil.

 

In a mixing bowl, whisk eggs with salt and pepper.

 

Heat a large, oven-safe skillet over medium heat. Add the ghee to the pan and swirl to coat the bottom. When the fat is hot, add onion and diced tomato and cook, stirring, for two to three minutes, until onion is soft. Add the spinach and let it wilt for 30 seconds.

 

Add the eggs to the skillet and fold them into the vegetables with a rubber spatula. Cook without stirring for about three to four minutes to let the eggs set on the bottom and sides of the pan. When the eggs are firm but still appear wet, lay a few tomato slices on top. Drizzle with lemon juice and sprinkle the lemon zest over the frittata.

 

Transfer the skillet to the oven and broil 4 to 6 inches from the heat for three to five minutes, until the top is golden brown. Cut into slices and serve hot.

 

If you prefer, you can finish your frittata by baking it rather than broiling: Simply preheat the oven to 500 degrees F, then cook it for three to five minutes.

Health and Wellness Associates

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Dr Gail Gray

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Foods, Uncategorized

CHICKEN CACCIATORE

Health and Wellness Associates
EHS Telehealth

 

CHICKEN CACCIATORE

 

chicken-cacciatore

Don’t be tempted to use boneless, skinless chicken with this classic recipe. The chicken skin holds the fat, and fat equals flavor. Plus, the skin helps the sauce cling to the chicken.

 

Makes two servings

Prep time: 15 minutes

Cook time: 40 minutes

 

4 tbs. ghee or clarified butter ( butter from Europe )

1 lb. chicken legs (bone-in, skin-on)

3/4 lb. chicken thighs (bone-in, skin-on)

½ tsp. salt

½ tsp. black pepper

½ onion, minced

½ red bell pepper, finely diced

1 cup mushrooms, sliced

2 cloves garlic, minced

1 tbs. capers, drained

1  14.5 oz. can diced tomatoes

1 cup chicken broth or water

1 tbs. fresh basil leaves, roughly chopped

In a large skillet with high sides, heat 2 tablespoons of ghee over medium-high heat, coating the bottom of the pan. Season the chicken with the salt and pepper and place in the pan. Sear the chicken until golden brown, about three minutes on each side. Remove the chicken from the pan and set aside.

 

With the same pan still on medium-high heat, add the remaining 2 table-spoons of ghee, the onions, and the peppers, and sauté for two to three minutes, until the onions become translucent. Add the mushrooms and continue to cook, stirring for two minutes. Add the garlic and stir until aromatic, about one minute. Add the capers and diced tomatoes.

 

Return the chicken to the pan and pour in the chicken broth or water until it covers the chicken pieces. Reduce heat to medium and bring everything to a simmer. Turn the heat to low and continue to simmer until the chicken reaches an internal temperature of 165 degrees F, about 30 minutes.

 

Garnish with the chopped basil and serve hot.

 

Health and Wellness Associates

Archived

Dr Jay Jaranson

Dr Gail Gray

312-972-9355 (WELL)

https://www.facebook.com/HealthAndWellnessAssociates/

Healthwellnessassociates@gmail.com

 

 

Uncategorized, Foods

Roasted Beet,Orange and AvacadoSalad

Health and Wellness Associates
EHS Telehealth

ROASTED BEET, ORANGE, AND AVOCADO SALAD

beet-avocado-orange-salad

These three flavors together are a dynamite combination — and super nutritious, too. Beets contain pigments called betalains, which provide antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and detox benefits. Avocados deliver a host of vitamins and minerals, as well as heart-healthy fats, and oranges are an excellent source of vitamin C and fiber.

 

Makes two servings

Prep time: 10 minutes

Cook time: 35 to 60 minutes

 

2 medium beets

2 tbs. extra-virgin olive oil

1 tbs. balsamic vinegar

1 orange, halved: one half zested and juiced, one half peeled and cut into segments

½ tsp. salt

¼ tsp. black pepper

1 avocado, split lengthwise, pitted, peeled, and diced

Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.

 

Rinse beets and stab all sides with a fork. Place in a medium bowl and add 1 tablespoon of the olive oil, tossing to thoroughly coat. Wrap each oiled beet in aluminum foil, pinching the top closed to create a seal. Place beets in the center of a baking sheet and roast for about 35 minutes. When you can pierce a beet with a thin knife all the way to the center without resistance (be careful opening the foil), it’s done. Remove from the oven and allow to rest until cool enough to handle.

 

With a knife, remove the skin from the beets. (Wear gloves and an apron.) Dice the beets into 1-inch pieces and place in a serving bowl.

 

In a small bowl, combine the remaining 1 tablespoon of olive oil with the vinegar, orange juice, salt, and pepper, and whisk until combined.

 

Add the orange segments and avocado to the beets. Drizzle with the dressing, sprinkle on the orange zest, toss to coat, and serve.

These three flavors together are a dynamite combination — and super nutritious, too. Beets contain pigments called betalains, which provide antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and detox benefits. Avocados deliver a host of vitamins and minerals, as well as heart-healthy fats, and oranges are an excellent source of vitamin C and fiber.

 

Makes two servings

Prep time: 10 minutes

Cook time: 35 to 60 minutes

 

2 medium beets

2 tbs. extra-virgin olive oil

1 tbs. balsamic vinegar

1 orange, halved: one half zested and juiced, one half peeled and cut into segments

½ tsp. salt

¼ tsp. black pepper

1 avocado, split lengthwise, pitted, peeled, and diced

Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.

 

Rinse beets and stab all sides with a fork. Place in a medium bowl and add 1 tablespoon of the olive oil, tossing to thoroughly coat. Wrap each oiled beet in aluminum foil, pinching the top closed to create a seal. Place beets in the center of a baking sheet and roast for about 35 minutes. When you can pierce a beet with a thin knife all the way to the center without resistance (be careful opening the foil), it’s done. Remove from the oven and allow to rest until cool enough to handle.

 

With a knife, remove the skin from the beets. (Wear gloves and an apron.) Dice the beets into 1-inch pieces and place in a serving bowl.

 

In a small bowl, combine the remaining 1 tablespoon of olive oil with the vinegar, orange juice, salt, and pepper, and whisk until combined.

 

Add the orange segments and avocado to the beets. Drizzle with the dressing, sprinkle on the orange zest, toss to coat, and serve.

 

Health and Wellness Associates

Archived

Dr Jay Jaranson

Dr Gail Gray

312-972-9355 (WELL)

Uncategorized, Foods

Cauliflower Rice

Health and Wellness Associates
EHS Telehealth

 

CAULIFLOWER RICE

 

cauliflower-rice

Gone are the days of overcooked cauliflower that smells like sulfur. “Ricing” cauliflower in a food processor by pulsing it until it’s ground to a rice-like consistency gives it a light, delicate structure and a mild taste that pairs well with just about anything. Make this a complete meal by adding a serving of your favorite protein and sautéing any leftover veggies from your fridge.

 

Makes two servings

Prep time: 15 minutes

Cook time: 15 minutes

 

1 large head cauliflower, cut into florets

3 tbs. ghee or clarified butter

½ onion, finely chopped

1 carrot, peeled and finely chopped

2 cloves garlic, minced

½ cup chicken broth

1 tbs. minced fresh cilantro

½ tsp. salt

½ tsp. black pepper

“Rice” the cauliflower in batches: Place approximately half of the florets into the food processor, being careful not to pack too tightly, and pulse 15 to 20 times until the cauliflower has a rice-like texture. Remove riced cauliflower from the processor and repeat to rice the remaining florets.

 

In a large skillet, melt the ghee over medium heat and coat the bottom of the pan. When the ghee is hot, add the onion and carrot and cook, stirring, until the onion is translucent, two to three minutes. Stir in the garlic and cook until aromatic, about one minute.

 

Add the riced cauliflower to the skillet and mix thoroughly with the rest of the vegetables. Add the chicken broth, cover the pan with a lid, and steam until finished, like cooked rice, about 10 to 12 minutes. (The cauliflower should be tender, but not mushy or wet.)

 

Remove from the heat and mix in the chopped cilantro. Season to taste with salt and pepper, and serve.

 

Health and Wellness Associates

Archived

Dr Jay Jaranson

Dr Gail Gray

312-972-9355 (WELL)

 

Diets and Weight Loss, Foods, Health and Disease, Uncategorized

How Does MCT OIL Help?

Health and Wellness Associates
EHS Telehealth Services

 

How Does MCT OIL Help?

oil

  1. Can Help with Weight Loss or Maintenance

Compared to other types of oils and fats, MCTs seem to have positive effects on fat burning and weight reduction. As part of a healthy diet, MCT oil can help increase satiety and even raise the metabolic rate at which the body functions. Does this mean eating large amounts of MCTs daily will make you drop pounds? Not quite. Not every study has shown that MCTs can produce weight loss necessarily, but some definitely have shown the positive effects of MCTs on metabolic function.

 

For example, a 2003 study published in the Journal of Obesity and Related Metabolic Disorders showed that after comparing long-term consumption of MCTs and LCTs on energy expenditure, body composition and fat oxidation in obese women, the MCTs had more significant effects. Substitution of MCTs for LCTs in a targeted energy balance diet proved to offer better prevention of long-term weight gain due to increases in energy expenditure and fat-burning. (2)

 

Another 2001 study published in the Journal of Nutrition compared body weight and body fat in groups of adults either consuming long-chain fats or medium-chain fats over a 12-week period. The energy, fat, protein and carbohydrate intakes did not differ significantly between the groups, only the types of fats they were receiving. After 12 weeks, the decrease in body weight and body fat was significantly greater in the MCT group than in the LCT group. The decrease in the area of subcutaneous fat in the MCT group was also significantly greater than that in the LCT group, which suggests that the MCT diet might be able to help reduce body weight and fat in individuals who need to lose weight. (3)

 

How do MCTs help with weight loss? Experimental studies demonstrate that dietary MCTs suppress fat deposition through enhanced thermogenesis and fat oxidation in both animals and humans. (4) In other words, it’s believed that they help the body produce ketones, which gives you the same benefits as the ketogenic diet without needing to cut carbs to drastically low levels. In fact, MCTs are sometimes called “the ultimate ketogenic fats” because of their heating effect in the body and ability to rapidly be used for energy, especially when someone is not eating a lot of carbohydrates, making them perfect for the keto diet to help the body reach ketosis — along with one of the best things to consume on the Paleo diet.

 

  1. Helps Protect Heart Health

A 2010 study published in the Journal of Neutraceuticals and Functional Foods reported that MCTs can help prevent the development of metabolic syndrome — a term given to a cluster of metabolic disorders, such as abdominal obesity, dyslipidemia, hypertension and impaired fasting glucose levels. MCTs seem to be able to help decrease cardiovascular disease and mortality risk in general due to helping lower odds of becoming obese. Most likely, they have this positive effect because they are anti-inflammatory, easy to digest, satiating and easily used for energy as described above. (5)

 

  1. Improves Energy Levels and Mood

Your brain is largely made up of fatty acids, so you need a steady supply from your diet to feel your best, think clearly, perform well at work and stay sharp well into older age. Medium-chain fats are believed to be one of the most easily digested, utilized and protective fatty acids that exists.

 

A 2004 study published in the Journal of Neurobiology of Aging found that the MCTs in coconut oil helped improved memory problems, including Alzheimer’s disease in older adults. (6) It only makes sense that a food that supplies fuel for your brain and also helps you absorb vitamins and minerals better will also make you feel more clearheaded, energetic and positive.

 

MCT oil helps not only feed your brain cells, but also improves your gut health — which is largely connected to cognitive functioning thanks to the “gut-brain connection.” In one animal study published in the Journal of Animal Feed and Sciences, when pigs were either fed a standard feed mixture (the control) or the same mixture supplemented with two grams each of caprylic or capric acid MCTs, the pigs receiving MCTs showed improvements in bacterial gut health, performance, growth and digestion of nutrients, including proteins and fiber. (7)

 

  1. Supports Digestion and Nutrient Absorption

Both MCT oil and coconut oil are beneficial for balancing bacteria in the gut microbiota, which in turn has positive effects on the digestive symptom, energy expenditure, and the ability to absorb vitamins and minerals from the foods you eat. Medium-chain fats can help kill a wide range of pathogenic viruses, strains and bacteria that cause digestive issues, including candida, constipation, diarrhea, food poisoning, stomachaches and so on. (8)

 

You also need to consume coconut and other healthy fats in order absorb fat-soluble nutrients found in various foods. These include nutrients like beta-carotene (a precursor of vitamin A found in plants like berries, squash and leafy greens), vitamin E, calcium, magnesium, phosphorus and lutein. When you consume a healthy diet filled with lots of different whole, plant foods but don’t get enough healthy fat sources at the same time, your body is basically not capable of utilizing these nutrients as well.

 

  1. Has Antibacterial, Antiviral and Antifungal Properties

MCTs are powerful, natural antibiotics that help balance bacteria in the gut. In the age of antibiotic resistance, it’s meaningful to have natural methods to kill some harmful types of bacteria. Here are some known to be killed by medium-chain fats: streptococcus (which causes strep throat, pneumonia and sinus infections), straphylococcus (which causes food poisoning and urinary tract infections), neisseria (which causes meningitis, gonorrhea and pelvic inflammatory diseases), and some other strains that cause stomach viruses, candida, ulcers and sexually transmitted diseases. (9)

 

In fact, there are at least a dozen pathogenic viruses that have been inactivated at least partially by lauric acid. Another great thing about MCTs is that they are capable of reducing “bad bacteria” without harming or removing “good bacteria.” That’s important, considering we need the good kind for intestinal health and digestive functioning.

 

According to some studies, medium-chain fats offer better protection from infections than longer-chain fatty acids do. A study published in the Journal of Nutritional Biochemistry found that fatty acids and monoglycerides with chain lengths varying from 8–12 carbons were found to be more strongly antiviral and antibacterial when added to milk and formula than long-chain monoglycerides. Medium-chain lipids added to milk (lipid-enhanced milk) and formula inactivated a number of pathogens, including respiratory syncytial virus (RSV), herpes simplex virus type 1 (HSV-1), haemophilus influenzae and streptococcus. (10)

 

  1. Can Withstand High-Heat Cooking

MCT oils are particularly good for cooking because they have a high “smoke point,” meaning they don’t oxidize from heat easily and can withstand high temperatures. This is crucial, because even certain “good fats” are not well-suited for cooking (like extra virgin olive oil or flaxseed oil, for example) and can become rancid oils somewhat easily. Both coconut oil and MCT oil can be used for the most part in baked goods, sautés, stir-fries and grilled foods without oxidizing.

We are all individuals, with a unique and sacred temple to take care of.  Not all products work on everybody the same way.  Please take it slowly, introduce it slowly into your body.

If you have any questions, please contact us, and we will help you through it.

 

Health and Wellness Associates

Archived

Dir P Carrothers

Dir Personalized Healthcare

Preventative and Restorative Medicine

312-972-9355

Healthwellnessassociates@gmail.com

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Diets and Weight Loss, Foods, Health and Disease, Uncategorized

MCT Oil vs. COCONUT Oil

Health and WEllness Associates
EHS Telehealth Associative

 

MCT OIL vs. COCONUT Oil

mctorcoconumt

MCT Oil vs. Coconut Oil

There’s been no shortage of coconut oil uses and treatments proven by recent research — it provides not only MCTs (especially abundant levels of lauric acid), but also antibacterial properties, antioxidants, anti-inflammatories and more. The difference between MCT oil and coconut oil is that MCT oil is more concentrated and contains different proportions of MCTs. While coconut oil certainly has MCTs in it, concentrated MCT oil is almost entirely MCTs.

 

There are four different kinds of MCTs, which differ depending on the number of carbons there are connected to the fat molecules (this ranges between 6 to 12 carbons long). The MCTs in coconut oil are made up of about 50 percent of one kind (lauric acid), so the fact that coconut oil is mostly just one type of MCT is one reason that some people prefer concentrated MCT oils more. “MCT oils” usually have all four types of MCTs that can be difficult to get from other foods.

 

Coconut oil is one of the best sources of lauric acid as you can see, which many studies have shown has antibacterial, antimicrobial and antiviral properties. Although about 90 percent of the fats found in coconut oil are saturated, a high percentage is not the very short chain MCTs that have less carbons (lauric acid has 12).

 

The fatty acids termed MCTs and lauric acid act somewhat differently in the body, although in the U.S., coconut oil and MCT oil manufacturers are legally allowed to claim that lauric acid is a type of MCT. Some people claim that lauric acid doesn’t biologically act like other forms of shorter MCTs (or at least as quickly), which is one reason why MCT advocates believe that MCT oil is somewhat superior.

 

On the other hand, coconut oil does have some well-documented health benefits that concentrated MCT oils might be lacking. The biggest drawback to buying manufactured MCT oil is that you might not really know what you’re getting. In order to produce a liquid MCT oil that does not become solid at colder temps, it might need to be more refined than regular coconut oil. MCT oil might also remove some of the very beneficial lauric acid, which is the star ingredient in real extra-virgin coconut oil.

 

So while some marketers of MCT oil might claim that their products contain more concentrated and diverse MCTs than real coconut oil does, it might be because they’re chemically altered and absent of lauric acid. It could even have “filler” oils like omega-6 polyunsaturated fats. Another factor to consider is that most MCT oils on the market are manufactured via chemical/solvent refining, which can mean they require using chemicals like hexane and different enzymes and combustion chemicals.

 

The bottom line? Enjoy both coconut oil and quality MCT oil for their numerous benefits — just make sure you buy a high-quality MCT oil that clearly states what the ingredients are and how it was produced.

 

Health and Wellness Associates

Archived

Dir P Carrothers

Dir Personalized Healthcare

Preventative and Restorative Medicine

312-972-9355

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Diets and Weight Loss, Foods, Health and Disease, Uncategorized

MCT OIL

Health and Wellness Associates
EHS Telehealth Association

  MCT OIL

 

mctoil

“MCTs” are medium-chain triglycerides, a form of saturated fatty acid that has numerous health benefits, ranging from improved cognitive function to better weight management. Coconut oil is one great source of MCTs — roughly 62 percent to 65 percent of the fatty acids in coconut oil are MCTs — but recently more concentrated “MCT oil” has also been growing in popularity.

 

MCTs, also called “MCFAs” for medium-chain fatty acids, are believed to be largely missing from the diets of people eating “standard Western” diets, most likely because the public has been led to believe that all forms of saturated fats are potentially harmful. However, recent research has shown a lot of evidence about the real truth regarding saturated fats.

 

We now know that ideally MCT oils like coconut oil should actually be consumed every day. Certain saturated fats, especially MCTs and other healthy fats found in things like coconut oil or grass-fed beef, are in fact easier to digest than long-chain triglycerides (LCTs) and might even have more benefits related to heart health, obesity prevention and brain health, too.

 

In fact, traditional populations living in tropical areas have been consuming saturated fats, including sources of MCTs like coconuts, for thousands of years without any ill effects — so consider the idea that a low-fat diet is “healthy” to be one of the biggest nutrition lies there ever was!

 

Aside from coconut oil, smaller amounts of MCTs can also be found in certain other foods with saturated fats, including butter (especially butter from grass-fed cows), cheeses, palm oil, whole milk and full-fat yogurt.  Dairy products in the United States do not have MCT’s in them.

 

Caution: Palm oil is a controversial source of MCTs, not because it’s bad for your body, but because there are major issues involved in the process of procuring this oil. These include deforestation, loss of wildlife diversity and unethical treatment of workers. That’s why I only recommend RSPO-certified palm oil, which comes from producers who prioritize sustainability practices.

 

What Makes MCT Oils So Special?

MCTs get their name because of the length of their chemical structure. All types of fatty acids are made up of strings of connected carbon and hydrogen. Fats are categorized by how many carbons they have: short-chain fats (like butyric acid) have fewer than six carbons, medium-chain fats have between six to 12 carbons and long-chain fats (like omega-3s) have between 13–21.

 

What makes MCTs a top source of essential healthy fats? Medium-chain fats are digested easily and sent directly to your liver, where they have a thermogenic effect and the ability to positively alter your metabolism. This is one reason why many people claim that MCTs, including coconut oil, are burned by the body for energy, or “fuel,” instead of being stored as fat.

 

Compared to longer-chain fats, MCTs are absorbed more easily since there’s less work for the body to do breaking apart carbon bonds. MCTs are smaller, so they can permeate our cell membranes more easily and don’t require that we use special enzymes in order for our bodies to utilize them.

 

MCTs and saturated fats are good for you in other ways, too: They reduce the risks of low-fat diets, and they’re supportive of your gut environment, especially since they have the capability to combat harmful bacteria, viruses, fungi and parasites. Additionally, MCTs contain antioxidant properties, which is why coconut oil has far-reaching inflammatory benefits that have led it to be used to treat dozens of health problems in folk medicine for centuries.

 

 

MCT Oil Nutrition Facts

There are actually a few different forms of MCT oils, some that are likely more effective than others. The four different kinds of MCTs include caprioc (acid C6:0), caprylic (acid C8:0), capric (acid C10:0) and lauric (acid C12:0) acids. Generally speaking, the shorter the chain (meaning the lower the number of carbons the acid has), the faster the body can turn the fatty acids into usable energy, in ketone form. Ketones are what the body produces when it’s using fat for energy instead of glucose.

 

Regardless of the exact kind of MCT, all are still beneficial for overall health — especially for people who have a difficult time digesting other forms of fats, including anyone with malabsorption problems, digestive disorders like leaky gut syndrome, Crohn’s disease, gallbladder infections and so on.

 

Health and Wellness Associates

Archived

Dr P Carrothers

Dir Personalized Healthcare

Preventative and Restorative Medicine

 

312-972-9355

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Foods, Health and Disease, Uncategorized

Lentils for Thyroid and Adrenal Glands

Health and Wellness Associates

EHS – Telehealth System

 

Have Lentils to Recharge the Adrenal Glands.

 

lentils2

Lentils are packed with copper and manganese – two minerals that you  might not find an adequate amount in your daily vitamins.
These minerals help the adrenal glands produce energy hormones for one, but also help you with thinning hair, and fat and cholesterol
absorption.  Yale researchers say that 1/2 cup daily is the amount you need, for a 30% increase in energy, thinning hair, and fat absorption
in the intestines, helping you loose up to three pounds a month.

You do not need a special recipe, or preparation for this either.  Buy Progresso lentil soup.  Add it to another soup you are making or
spaghetti sauce, chili, stews, even casserole dishes.  There is not a heavy flavor, and most people will not know you added it.

If you have thyroid problems this is a must eat!  If you have kidney problems this is a must eat!

 

Contact us with any of your healthcare concerns.

Health and Wellness Associates

Dr. A Sullivan

 

312-972-9355 (WELL)

 

HealthWellnessAssociates@gmail.com

 

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Foods, Uncategorized

Vegie Lasagna

Health and Wellness Associates
EHS Telehealth Company

Vegie and Cheese Lasagna

vegie-lasagna

Ingredients

1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
3/4 cup sliced button or cremini mushrooms
3/4 cup chopped zucchini
1/2 cup peeled and chopped carrot
1/2 cup chopped red bell pepper
1/2 cup thinly sliced red onion
1 (26-oz.) jar prepared tomato basil pasta sauce
3 Tbs. prepared pesto
1 (15-oz.) carton part-skim ricotta cheese
6 hot cooked lasagna noodles, cut in half
3/4 cup (3 oz.) shredded part-skim or whole milk mozzarella cheese
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese or Grana Padano cheese

( If you read the post on Progresso Lentil Soup, this is a good recipe to add it to)

Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 50 minutes

Total Time: 70 minutes
Yield: Serves 6

Preparation

1. Preheat the oven to 375°F.

2. Heat the oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add the mushrooms, zucchini, carrot, bell pepper, and onion, and cook, stirring often, for about 7 minutes, or until the vegetables begin to soften. Add the pasta sauce, stir well, and bring the mixture to a simmer. Reduce the heat to low and simmer for 10 minutes.

3. Combine the pesto and ricotta in a small bowl and mix well.

Spread about 1/2 cup of the tomato sauce mixture in the bottom of an 8-inch square baking dish or pan coated with cooking spray. Arrange 4 noodles over the tomato mixture. Top the noodles with half of the ricotta mixture and 1 cup of the tomato mixture. Repeat the layers, ending with the noodles. Spread the remaining tomato mixture over the noodles, and sprinkle with the mozzarella and parmesan cheese.

4. Cover the dish with a sheet of aluminum foil and bake for 30 minutes. Uncover the dish and bake for 20 minutes more, or until the top is golden brown. Remove the lasagna from the oven and let stand for 10 minutes before serving.

About Lasagna

In Italy, its home of origin, lasagna is a very different animal than what we’ve come to know in America. While it certainly rates as on the richest dishes in the Italian repertoire, it’s almost austere compared to its American catch-all counterpart. In Italy, lasagna reflects the seasons: A springtime lasagna is delicate with young artichokes, while in autumn, you’ll find layers of pasta mingling with woodsy fresh porcini and winter squash.

But perhaps the true beauty of the Italian approach to lasagna is that by relying more on vegetables and lighter sauces—and less on cheese.

Foods, Uncategorized

An Underrated Fruit You Should Eat

Health and Wellness Associates

honeydew

Honeydew melons are large and oval shaped melons with a smooth rind that range in color from white to pale green. The flesh is usually pale green as well, although some varieties have a gold flesh.

Honeydews are rich in water and contain fewer carbohydrates than other fruit varieties. But, as with most foods, it is important to portion control.

Honeydew is available fresh almost all year, with peak season from June to October.

 

Health Benefits of Honeydew

Honeydew melons are an excellent source of vitamin C, providing more than half a day’s worth (53%) in one half-cup serving.

Vitamin C acts as an antioxidant in blood and cells, plays a role in boosting immunity, and assists in collagen produce, making it important in anti-aging.

Honeydew is also a good source of potassium. Potassium has the potential to reduce blood pressure. It also maintains fluid and electrolyte balance and is required for proper nerve conduction and muscle contraction.

Common Questions About Honeydew

Does honeydew differ from cantaloupe nutritionally?

The biggest difference between cantaloupes and honeydew melon is the vitamin A content. Cantaloupe contains more than a day’s worth of vitamin A, whereas honeydew contains a mere two percent.

As for calories and carbohydrates, honeydew and cantaloupe match up almost identically. Honeydew has slightly more calories (about four) and slightly more carbohydrates (about 1.5) as compared to cantaloupe.

Picking and Storing Honeydew

Choose melons that are heavy for their size and have a smooth, undamaged rind with a waxy feel to them. Avoid melons that are very soft or feel damp at the stem end.

Smell your honeydew. It should give off a strong, sweet aroma.

Touch the honeydew. It should yield slightly and spring back when you press the blossom end (which is opposite the stem end).

If your melon isn’t quite ripe yet, store it at room temperature. Refrigerate it as soon as it ripens to avoid it from becoming overly ripe.

After melon has been cut it should be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator and can last a few days.

Healthy Ways to Prepare Honeydew

Because melons have such a high percentage of water cooking them destroys their texture, making them mushy.

Therefore, honeydew is best served simply sliced or paired with protein such as, low-fat Greek yogurt, cottage cheese, or ricotta. Honeydew can also be used as garnish or used in fruit salads and smoothies. Puree honeydew to make cold, refreshing soup.

 

Health and WEllness Associates

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