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This month we look at: the health benefits of plant based diets, slimming nuts, a new superfood, plus more!

What’s in the News – Meat Eaters Pack it on More!

High protein diets have become popular, but could a large steak each day be stretching your waistline? Important research just published in the prestigious American Journal of Clinical Nutrition suggests this may well be the case.

The large study, with the abbreviated name of EPIC-PANACEA, tracked 370,000 Europeans over five years. It found that the higher their daily meat intake – including red meat, chicken and processed meats – the more weight people gained over time. This was true for both men and women, including those who were normal weight and overweight, smokers and non-smokers. 

Key finding: For every extra 250g of meat consumed daily over and above the basic diet - think about the size of a good sized steak (approx. 450 kcal) - meat lovers packed on an additional 2 kg weight after just 5 years compared to people who consumed less or no meat.

This study suggests that reducing meat intake may be a way to help improve long term weight management. While it doesn’t constitute proof and more research is required, it’s interesting to note that other large studies looking at vegetarians have also discovered that people who don’t eat meat, or who only eat fish, have lower BMI’s (Body Mass Indexes) compared to their omnivorous friends.

While some people may enjoy a ‘hunter-gatherer’ diet, with unlimited amounts of meat, we’d like to add that within the context of a modern and sedentary lifestyle, reducing your meat intake to a healthier level (less than 450g in total per week) is a much safer option.  You’ll also be improving your health in other ways, such as lowering your risk of cancer, according to the World Cancer Research Fund.

Read more about the study

Slimming Tip – A Healthy Handful

Should you avoid nuts if you want to lose weight? You may be surprised to learn that in small amounts, nuts can be a regular part of a weight loss program.

The latest research also suggests you can include a variety of nuts (such as almonds, walnuts, cashews, Brazil nuts, pecans and pistachios) and still lose weight.

Although high in fat, nuts contain healthy unsaturated fats, which do not clog your arteries; rather they act to protect your heart health and improve your cholesterol levels! Nuts provide a good source of plant sterols, protein, fibre, vitamin E and minerals.

Tip: Enjoy nuts in place of other snack foods. Limit to 3-4 times per week if you’re on a low calorie program or ask your dietitian how you can work them in every day. To keep within a 100 calorie portion snack, aim for 15-20 g nuts. 

What's Cooking in August – Healthy Kid’s Cookshop

Want more ideas to help your kids fall in love with good food? Learn from the experts about foods that provide the best nourishment and fuel for growing bodies!

You’ll also hear practical advice on how to cook for a fussy eater and see easy meal and snack suggestions your kids will love.  It’s never too early or too late to give your child a head start in life.

Join us on Tuesday 7th September from 6:30pm - 8:30pm and discover lifelong food lessons you should be teaching your children today for a healthy happy body, both now and in the future.

Find out more about this cookshop

Call NOW on (02) 9899 5208 to secure your seat. Inform other struggling parents you know, facing the same food dilemmas, to join us!

What’s in the news – Live Longer, Younger and Better!

Are you interested in living longer, younger and better? More and more research is strengthening the evidence that plant based diets offer many advantages over those diets saturated with animal products. For example, a diet centred on unrefined plant foods can reduce your risk of obesity, type 2 diabetes, heart disease, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, constipation, bowel cancer and even kidney and gallstones!

To showcase the benefits of plant based diets and encourage people to make positive changes to their lifestyle, National Vegetarian Week in Australia starts end of this month:  27th September – 3rd October.

For more information about the benefits of plant foods and healthy eating tips, visit the vegetarian week website.

What's Fresh? Cocoa Bean

The famous cocoa bean (Theobroma cacao) is one of the most enjoyed ingredients across the world; just consider how many people love chocolate! Yet the cocoa bean is actually highly bitter, the reason why dark chocolate has a bitter flavour, due to the goodness of its cocoa solids.

The cocoa bean is high in iron, vitamins A, B & C, magnesium, zinc plus other nutrients. However, some of these are destroyed or reduced when the beans are roasted for chocolate making. This is why raw cocoa powder is recommended over chocolate for health benefits.

In a recent statement the National Heart Foundation in Australia made it clear it doesn’t recommend either milk or dark chocolate but the use of raw cocoa powder due to its rich polyphenol flavonoid antioxidants that help to reduce the ‘bad’, LDL cholesterol.

Raw cocoa powder is available from selected health food stores. It will keep for up to two years when stored in an airtight container in a cool, dark place. If you don’t store it in a container, be sure to store away from herbs and spices as the cocoa can absorb other flavours and spoil its own aromatic properties!

3 ways with cocoa

  • Indulge in a choc-banana smoothie (blend 1 tsp cocoa, 1 cup low fat milk, 1 banana, 1 TBSP natural peanut butter)

  • Whip up a healthy choc frozen dessert See recipe

  • Sprinkle cocoa powder onto your favourite muesli

In the Kitchen: Practical tips, new gadgets & essential tools – Magimix Food Processor

If you’re after a high performance food processor you have to check out the Magimix range available at all good kitchen and homeware stores. Made in France for over 30 years, these processors are designed to make life simpler.

We can’t do without our Magimix. If you have attended one of our Culinary Medicine cookshops, you may have witnessed how quickly, quietly and easily it processes food!

Here’s what we love about Magimix: it’s easy to clean, and the commercial grade induction motor ensures it is quieter than most. We also like that it includes 3 bowls in 1 so, depending on the amount of food you need processed, you can choose the most suitable size to get the best result.

You do pay the price for the quality of course, with the base model Magimix food processor starting at $625. But in our opinion, it’s well worth the investment!  The best time to buy Magimix is when it’s on sale, such as at Peter’s of South Kensington in Sydney. 

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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