The Decades-Old Foodie Favorites That Are Hot Again –

The Decades-Old Foodie Favorites That Are Hot Again -

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Decades of devotion to convenient, mass-distributed, processed foods turned the national larder generic and bland. But by embracing local food sources, slow-food tenets, and ecologically sound methods, we’re rediscovering deliciousness from back in the day. Here’s a taste of nine new-old trends.

1/ BITTER FLAVORS There’s a bitter-flavor boom under way thanks in part to bitters, the alcohol-based botanical concoctions, and a gorgeous riot of purple and green speckled chicories. Use them to add color and crunch to gratins and sautés. Try this: Rosso Tardivo radicchio, melissas.com

2/ HEIRLOOM APPLES Johnny Appleseed didn’t just plant Red Delicious trees. Our continent has hosted more than 15,000 apple varieties over its history. Today’s forward-thinking growers have restocked their farms with Nodheads, Granite Beauties, Pitmaston Pineapples, and hundreds of other varieties. Find them in the late summer, fall, and winter at your farmers markets.

3/ NEXT-LEVEL BREADS Tangy, chewy sourdoughs—mixed with whole grains, leavened with wild yeast, and left to ferment—represent ancient baking tradition, though we’re just starting to appreciate it again now, thanks to small artisanal bakeries sprouting like wheat berries nationwide. Look for micrograin mills suited for home kitchens (and cricket flour!) as interest grows in baking with fresh-milled whole grains.

4/ ANCIENT GRAINS In the beginning, there was amaranth (black barley, farro, and spelt, too). Many years later, we worshipped corn, rice, and white flour. Now, the health benefits and the new world of the oldest whole grains have made us disciples once again.

5/ HERITAGE MEATS Breeders raising old-line animals—Ossabaw and Berkshire pigs; White Park cattle; Blue Andalusian chickens; Bourbon Red turkeys, to name but a few—bring to market incredibly flavorful protein, a stark contrast to the lean hybrid commodity meats in supermarkets. Try this: Poulet Rouge Fermier, joyce-farms.com

6/ CHARCUTERIE AND SALUMI Once exclusive to bistros and trattorias, house-cured meats have become a passion project for many American chefs. The movement falls directly in line with farm-to-table and nose-to-tail principles the food world has espoused for years now. Try this: Saucisson les Diots, salumeriabiellese.com

7/ BYCATCH AND OILY FISH Savvy restaurants now offer species once discarded as “trash fish,” touting their tastes and eco-friendly pedigrees. The crusade is also a net gain for previously unfashionable oily fish loaded with omega-3s, like sardines, anchovies, mullet, and mackerel. Try this: Small Mackerel in Olive Oiljosegourmet.com

8/ FERMENTED FOODS Snappy, slightly effervescent Korean kimchi, unpasteurized sauerkraut, kefir, and kombucha are among the most popular items laced with good-gut bacteria, proving healthy food can—and should—be the boldest-tasting, most delicious stuff you eat. Try this: Mother-In-Law’s Kimchimilkimchi.com

9/ AQUACULTURE After a century-long lull, oysters beds are repopulating our coastlines as bivalves come back in vogue. Look for more sustainably farmed finfish like catfish and troutand ocean farms of seaweed to help replace the demand for declining stocks of wild fish. Try this: Sewansecott oysters and clams, hmterry.com



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Stop Eating These Toxic Foods Right Now. –

Stop Eating These Toxic Foods Right Now. -

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There are the foods that nutrionists eat every day. Then there are the foods a nutrionist always keeps in the fridge. And then, there are the foods a nutritionist wishes you would never, ever eat again. Before you head to the grocery store for your next food shopping trip, here are the seven worst offenders.

1. Cauliflower Rice

It may be healthy, but nutritionist Rebecca Scritchfield, author of Body Kindness, just can’t get behind this cruciferous craze. “I’ve tried a few of the frozen bags of cauliflower rice and it really didn’t taste that good. Rice is delicious and it has a purpose (even white rice, though brown has a smidge more fiber, vitamins, and minerals),” she says. “Now, I’m all about enjoying cauliflower the ways that taste the best and making room on my plate for rice.” Hallelujah! But if cauliflower isn’t typically for you and the rice is your gateway to slipping more veggies into your diet, by all means, go ahead.

2. Shelf-Stable Salad Dressing

“So you’re eating more salad. Good for you! But that dressing you bought that’s been sitting on a grocery store shelf for months isn’t doing you any favors,” offers nutritionist Christy Brissette, president of 80 Twenty Nutrition. “It’s usually made with low-quality oils and loaded with preservatives you don’t need.” Pro-tip:If you don’t have time to make your own dressing, grab refrigerated salad dressings at the store; they may be a touch pricier, but typically have fewer preservatives.

3. Tomato Sauce

These jars are more of a healthy eating foe than friend. In addition to high sodium levels and additives, “[they] frequently have a lot of sugar in them,” notes Hillary Goldrich, a Nashville-based nutritionist. “It’s just as easy to open a can of crushed tomatoes into a pan with olive oil and garlic. Add some basil (dried or fresh) and simmer for the time it takes to cook your pasta.”

4. Bulletproof Coffee

It may get a lot of buzz, but nutritionists would smartly advise you to step away from this health halo gimmick, made from coffee, coconut oil, and butter or ghee. “The strongest case for drinking the calorie-laden stuff is if and only if you enjoy the taste,” says nutritionist Maggie Moon, author of The MIND Diet. Even so, it’s best to nix this concoction from your diet and a find a less caloric swap in its place, like heated almond milk with cinnamon and a touch of vanilla extract.

5. Granola

You swear your fit hiking guide cousin lives on the stuff. But….many store-bought varieties are actually filled with salt and sugar. “Granola is often considered a healthy cereal or addition to yogurt in a parfait,” shares Goldrich. “Typically they are high in calories for a small serving-size and have less fiber and more sugar than many other options.” To keep calories and sugar in check, make your own, or carefully scan labels for added sugars beyond those naturally occurring in fruits.

6. Spray Butter

“Deep in my dieting days butter was not allowed, but the chemically-tasting spray butter was OK,” recalls Scritchfield. “This mistake ended up making me regret eating broccoli because it didn’t taste as good as when I use real butter and little salt and pepper.” Better yet, swap in nutritious olive oil when sautéeing or drizzled over your veggies. We hear Costco’s massive jug of extra virgin olive oil retails for about 28 cents a serving.

7. Beef from Factory Farms

“The average American diet is higher in meat than we need for optimum functioning—contributing to food-related health diseases. We should be reducing our meat intake, and the first place to start is by removing the lower quality of factory farmed beef,” notes Rebecca Lewis, nutritionist for HelloFresh. “Factory-farmed cattle typically are fed a grain-based diet and are given growth hormones to make them grow faster.” Instead, opt for sustainable sources of beef that feed mainly on grass, which will give you more essential omega-3 fatty acids.



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The BEST Foods For Fighting Inflammation –

The BEST Foods For Fighting Inflammation -

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The following story is excerpted from TIME’s special edition, 100 Most Healing Foods, which is available in stores, at the Meredith Shop and at Amazon.

Inflammation is our body’s healthy response to fighting disease. But when it gets out of hand, inflammation can become chronic and lead to a whole host of health problems, from autoimmune diseases to cancer. Foods high in sugar and saturated fat are thought to contribute to inflammation, which is why some people who have inflammatory conditions and autoimmune disorders try out low-sugar diets. On the flip side, there are also foods to pile onto your plate that may actually tamp down inflammation. Read on for the latest science on anti-inflammatory options, plus how to enjoy these picks.

Bell peppers

How to eat them: Chop up bell peppers and serve them with hummus or drizzled with a little red-wine vinegar, salt and pepper.

Why they’re good for you: Bell peppers—especially the bright-red ones—are high in antioxidants and low in starch. Similar to spicy peppers, sweet bell peppers contain the chemical compound capsaicin, which is known to help reduce inflammation and potentially even pain.

Pears

How to eat them: Slice up pears and add them to a salad with walnuts and a soft cheese.

Why they’re good for you: If you’re concerned about inflammation (say, if you have arthritis or diabetes), eating high-fiber foods like pears is a natural way to fight the problem. Fiber-rich diets contribute to a healthy microbiome and promote satiety—helpful when trying to lose weight.

Mackerel

How to eat it: This fish is a Mediterranean staple. Roast a fillet of mackerel (or the whole fish if you’re adventurous) with a generous helping of herbs, olive oil and lemon.

Why it’s good for you: The high fat in mackerel helps fight diseases characterized by high inflammation, like heart disease and Alzheimer’s. Mackerel is also a source of vitamins B12 and D, the latter of which can be hard to find naturally in foods. Vitamin D is important for maintaining strong bones and immune-system function, as well as helping the body absorb calcium.

Spinach

How to eat it: Make a spinach salad with a high-fat food like avocado in order to take full advantage of the veggie’s nutrients.

Why it’s good for you: Spinach deserves its reputation as a power food. It is a good source of vitamin E, which may help protect the body from inflammation-causing molecules called cytokines. The dark color lets you know that it is nutrient- dense, like other leafy greens.

Black tea

How to drink it: Black tea tastes great on its own as well as with a bit of milk and honey, or you can add some lemon and pomegranate juice for a refreshing beverage.

Why it’s good for you: Green tea usually gets all the attention, but black tea (which comes from the same plant) also has benefits. Drinking black tea may help keep arteries open, and it contains antioxidants that are known to protect cells from damage. One study linked black tea to a substantially lower risk of ovarian cancer.

Buckwheat

How to eat it: Buckwheat is used to make soba noodles, which you can get in grocery stores and use in soups. You can also buy the grain on its own and eat it in place of rice.

Why it’s good for you: Eating grains may reduce blood levels of a marker for inflammation called C-reactive protein. Buckwheat is also gluten-free, making it a safe option for people with celiac disease (double-check labels, though).

Pomegranate seeds

How to eat them: Many grocery stores sell prepackaged pomegranate seeds, but if you want to start with the full fruit, cut it in half and spoon the seeds into a bowl to munch on or add to salads.

Why they’re good for you: Pomegranate seeds are a good source of antioxidants that can lower both cholesterol and blood pressure. In fact, experts think that a compound in them called punicalagin targets inflammation in the brain, which could help slow the progression of brain-related decline.



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Suffering From Gout? It Might Not Be What You Ate… –

Henry VIII

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We at IQYOU love genetics. Whether or not you take stock into the wondrous world of Snps is up to you – but hey, it’s science and it’s fact! This time, we’re going to discuss genetics and gout. And yes – genetics do have an impact on your gout – or lack there of.

Gout was once the disease once associated with gluttonous indulgence and King Henry VIII. Diet clearly plays a role, but genetics has a big influence on whether a person will develop this painful form of arthritis, which is caused by high uric acid levels.

Estimates are that about four percent of people in the U.S. have gout at any given time, and 10-20 percent of people may suffer a gout attack at some point in their lives.

Gout has become increasingly prevalent in recent decades as rich diets have become more commonplace. But genetics also plays an important role in the condition, specifically variants in genes involved in the excretion of uric acid from the kidneys.

Variants in the genes ABCG2 and SLC2A9 are associated with increased risk for gout. The gene ABCG2 encodes a protein that transports uric acid out of cells, while SLC2A9 encodes a protein that helps regulate the amount of uric acid removed from the blood by the kidneys.

Gout can be quite painful. When the body produces too much uric acid, the uric acid can form crystals in the joints that trigger attacks from the immune system. Consuming rich foods, sugary drinks, red meats and beer can increase the risk for developing the condition. For those at risk or who already have the condition, there are treatments and recommendations for keeping attacks at bay. Among the recommendations are staying well-hydrated, limiting the intake of red meat, beer and sugary drinks and regular monitoring of the uric acid level in your blood. There are also some medications used to help control the condition. Gout is also associated with other conditions including cardiovascular disease, hypertension, kidney disease and obesity.

“KING OF DISEASE”smiling_dalmatian

Everywhere there is DNA being made or broken down, there is uric acid. The build up of uric acid causes gout, but uric acid is also a molecule that is one of the building blocks of genes.

So why is it that gout is an extremely rare disease in the animal kingdom? The answer goes by the name “uricase.” This gene produces a protein that breaks down uric acid.

Uricase evolved a very long time ago and exists in organisms ranging from single-celled bacteria to almost all vertebrates. Its existence protects against uric acid build-up and, therefore, against gout. Unfortunately, for us humans, the uricase gene in our DNA is so mutated it no longer works. But we are not the only species to suffer from the so-called “King of Disease.”
Dalmations also famously get gout. In their case the mutations occur in a gene called SLC2A9 that helps excrete uric acid from the body. Interestingly, variations in this same gene are also associated with gout in humans. Most birds and some reptiles also develop gout, especially when kept as pets. This seems to be the result of extremely high protein diets and kidney failure.

Perhaps the most surprising species afflicted with this disease is the T-rex. Fossil evidence of damaged joints have provided a convincing argument that the King of Dinosaurs, perhaps appropriately, harbored the King of Diseases. However, in this case, we may never be sure whether it was caused by a genetic mutation or a diet rich in red meats.

Fossil evidence of damaged joints have provided a convincing argument that the King of Dinosaurs, perhaps appropriately, harbored the King of Diseases. However, in this case, we may never be sure whether it was caused by a genetic mutation or a diet rich in red meats.



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