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 Hello [name],

Wouldn’t it be nice to cruise around the Mediterranean, soak up the good weather and enjoy the food?  Sounds like a great holiday!  While we can’t take you there, we’ll show you how you can  enjoy the culinary delights of the Mediterranean and put your health in top shape at the same time.  Futher, we’ll introduce you to a low fat nut that is underused in Australia and show you how to remove stubborn smells from your hands after cooking!

What’s in the News – Diabetes: Should you Go Low Fat or Good Fat?

Did you know that one quarter of Australians have diabetes or impaired glucose metabolism (also known as pre-diabetes)?  Yet more than half of diabetics go undiagnosed.  If left untreated, this disease can lead to heart attacks, eye and kidney disease and even limb amputations! 

Risk factors for diabetes include obesity, a typical western (think Aussie!) diet, physical inactivity, increasing age and a family history of diabetes.  A low fat, calorie restricted, diet has traditionally been recommended to keep type 2 diabetes at bay.  However, one study published earlier this year in Diabetes Care reveals the Mediterranean diet works more magic – and it tastes better too!  In fact, this diet, high in fat (but of the unsaturated type), was actually shown to be 50 % more effective in reducing diabetes risk compared to the low fat, calorie controlled diet!

The Mediterranean diet is characterized by high levels of colourful vegetables, legumes (lentils, chickpeas, black-eyed beans etc.), wholegrains, fruits, nuts and olive oil; a moderate amount of fish, and only a little of red meat and full fat dairy products.  Wine is consumed at meal times and with great moderation.

In the study, participants aged 55 to 80 years with high cardiovascular risk (but no current diabetes) were followed for four years.  Those who had a high intake of olive oil (up to 1 litre per week – used liberally in cooking and in salads) or consumed 30 g nuts per day were only half as likely to develop diabetes compared to those who followed a low fat diet.

What do we think?  The health benefits of the Mediterranean diet have been well documented in many studies before – it’s good for weight control, high cholesterol, blood pressure, better brain function as well as diabetes.  But this study confirms the Mediterranean diet works better than conventional dietary treatments (share this with your doctor)!  So what are you waiting for?  Wouldn’t you rather enjoy eating good food as your medicine?  Find out more about how to cook simple dishes from the Mediterranean at this month’s cookshop.

Health Tip 

“You cannot change your genes, control the quality of the air you breathe all the time, or avoid the stresses of everyday life, but you can decide what to eat and what not to eat.  Diet is an important influence on health, one that you can control to a greater degree than other factors.”  Andrew Weil.

What’s Cooking in May – The Magic Mediterranean Diet to Drop Your Cholesterol & Blood Sugar

Do you have a high cholesterol or diabetes – red flags for heart attack and stroke? Do you believe healthy foods taste bland?  Discover the delights of the Mediterranean diet – full of delicious dishes including foods like fish, oregano, lemon, legumes and olive oil.  Heart protective food that lowers your immediate risk factors never need be bland again!

Join us on 17th May from 6:30 – 8:30 pm, to learn about this exciting way of eating for health and pleasure and get your cholesterol and blood glucose under better control.

Learn more about this cookshop.        

Call NOW on (02) 9899 5208 to book your place. Bring a friend!

Do you Have Unresolving Dizziness? 

Check it out with your doctor - you may have Meniere’s Disease.  The good news is, you can control your symptoms simply by following a low sodium diet.  In fact, this is the gold standard for medical treatment.  We can show you have to tweak your diet to reach the required level of sodium for amazing symptom relief!  Support groups, where you can share your experiences and learnings with others, are also very valuable.

The Meniere's Australia and Vestibular Support Group Sydney, provides information and services to people and their families suffering from Meniere's Disease and Vestibular Disorders.  The group will be meeting this month.  If you have Meniere’s, or or know someone who does, this is for you.

Wednesday, 18th May 2011, 10AM – 12PM.
Penshurst RSL Club, 58A Penshurst St, Penshurst, NSW, 2222.
Speakers on the day: Dr Sean Flanagan, Ear, Nose and Throat Specialist, St Vincents Hospital. Debra Martin Smith, Psychologist, Kogarah Private Practice.
RSVP: Brad Sharpe (02) 9580 7117 or Mob: 0433316900 by Wednesday 11th May.

What’s Fresh – Chestnuts

Chestnuts are a nut like no other – their nutrient profile more resembles a starchy vegetable or a grain, than a tree nut!  But this unusual nut is also good for you, especially if you are trying to lose weight or fighting a chronic disease.  Why? 

Unlike most nuts, which are high in energy (calories), the chestnut is nearly 50% water!  Chestnuts are also low fat, but they still contain the important monounsaturated fatty acids that lower your LDL-cholesterol (the bad one).  Additionally, they are a very good source of dietary fibre, which also helps to lower your cholesterol, as well as keeping you regular!  Their Vitamin C, potassium and magnesium content will help to boost your immune system and lower your blood pressure while improving your bone health!

Traditionally part of the staple diet in Southern Europe, Turkey and Asia, chestnuts are now grown throughout the world.  In Australia, chestnuts are mainly grown in the southern states, but they’re in season now and available for picking on Mt Irvine (Blue Mountains).  Chestnuts are usually boiled or roasted.  They have a sweet, light nutty flavour – a great addition to stir-fries, casseroles, stuffings for meat and poultry, pastas and desserts.  Alternatively, a small handful (about 4 nuts – if you can stop at that!) makes a super healthy snack. 

Due to their high water content, chestnuts should be kept refrigerated so they don’t dry out.  Stored this way, chestnuts stay fresh for several weeks.  To ensure they are of premium quality, try buying them directly from the farm.  See a picture of Sue picking chestnuts recently at Kookootonga Chestnut & Walnut Farm on Mount Irvine (Blue Mountains).  Great fun for all the family!

Three ways with Chestnuts

  • Try boiling chestnuts yourself with Sue’s recipe – this is the easiest way to prepare them. Or come along to this month’s Mediterranean cookshop and see how it’s done.
  • Add cooked, peeled, chestnuts to your mains (you can buy these frozen) – check out this chestnut, mushroom and pasta dish (just swap the butter for extra olive oil).
  • You can also buy chestnut flour.  For a wonderful dessert, try this chestnut cake.

Clinic News – ‘Like’ us on Facebook

Are you on Facebook?  We are!  We’re sure you’ll ‘like’ our Culinary Medicine Cookshop page. Keep up to date with additional cookshop info, including exclusive information and photos from behind the scenes, as well as interesting nutrition tips from our dietitians.  Have you tried a new recipe or dined at a new restaurant lately?  Tell us what you like and what works for you.

In the Kitchen – Odour removing soap!

Sick of your hands smelling like garlic, onion or fish every time you cook with these ingredients?  Despite washing your hands countless times, do you find you just can’t get rid of the smell?  If this is you, it may be time to buy a stainless steel soap. 

Shaped like normal soap, but made from stainless steel, this soap helps to remove odours from your skin.  How?  The exact mechanism is still up for debate, but one hypothesis suggests that the stainless steel mechanically removes the oils and grease responsible for the odours.  Another thought is that the stainless steel neutralizes offensive sulfur compounds.  If you have an idea of how it works, we’d love to hear from you.  The bottom line is, it does, and it’s worth having if you are sensitive to residual odours on your hands.

You can pick up this ‘bar of soap’ for around $8 at most department stores that sell kitchenware.

Tell Your Friends! 

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Published by the Nutrition & Wellbeing Clinic, Copyright 2010.

Suite 10, 80 Cecil Avenue, Castle Hill NSW 2154 Ph: +61 2 9899 5208 Fx: +61 2 9899 2848 www.sueradd.com

We are a boutique Dietitians clinic in Sydney, Australia, offering one-on-one consultations, culinary medicine cooking workshops, motivational health seminars and nutrition advisory services to businesses in the local and global area.

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