If you’re like me, you’re interested in foods that can give you high-density nutrition, protect you from chronic disease, help reverse disease, and even defy the aging process. And what better time to focus your attention on these important qualities of food than the New Year!
Every New Year, I resolve to expand my knowledge of healthy, anti-aging foods and create new, easy, and delicious recipes to share with my family and friends. This year, a few unique and promising foods have already piqued my interest: goji berries, camu camu, spirulina, and mangosteen. All of them contain FoodTrients—my word for nutrients with anti-aging properties.
Goji berries, also called wolfberries, come from China, Mongolia, and the Himalayas. They have been used in Asian medicine for centuries to detoxify the blood and liver, improve vision, and help circulation. Orange-red in color, they are very small and tart, like cranberries. Goji berries have more antioxidant power than even prunes. They are high in vitamins B and C, calcium, and iron and they contain beta carotene and zeaxanthin, which protects the retinas for eye health. Fresh goji berries are unavailable in this country, but you can purchase the dried berries and use them instead of cranberries in drinks, desserts, salads, and rice.
Camu camu is a small, reddish-purple fruit from the Amazon rainforest. It contains the FoodTrients anthocyanins (which reduce the risk of cancer), catechins (which help protect the heart, among other benefits), and vitamin C (a powerful antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and immunity booster). Camu camu is best used in capsule or powder form. Sprinkle the powder in smoothies or on raspberries or citrus fruits.
Spirulina is a blue-green algae with an interesting history: it was once a food source for the ancient Aztecs. A protein-rich food, spirulina contains the FoodTrients vitamins C and E, potassium, selenium, and zinc and has many other powerful nutrients. It’s available as a supplement, a whole food, and in tablet, flake, and powder form.
Stay tuned to FoodTrients.com for recipes resulting from my investigations with all these exciting new foods. I’ll post them after I’ve perfected them in my test kitchen. In the meantime, start your own New Year’s resolution toward better health the FoodTrients way. For example, want to incorporate more antioxidants in your diet? Try orange vegetables, such as carrots, sweet potatoes, or winter squash. Add spices such as curry powder and turmeric to rice, poultry, or vegetable dishes.
Eat more leafy greens, such as kale and spinach. For an easy antioxidant FoodTrient start, see the recipes for Carrot Quiche, Turmeric Rice, Potato Kale Soup, and Spinach and Grapefruit Salad in my book the Age Gracefully Cookbook and on the website.
Carrots are well known for their beta-carotene content, which our bodies convert into vitamin A, a powerful antioxidant that is needed for healthy immune function. Carrots have hundreds of other cartenoids that help inhibit cancer growth. They also contain lutein, which is beneficial to eye health. Our bodies process the nutrients in carrots more efficiently when they are cooked. In this quiche, the carrots stay bright orange and firm, a nice contrast to the silky custard base.
1. Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Prick the pie crust with a fork and bake until just beginning to brown, about 7 minutes.
2. Heat the canola oil in a sauté pan over medium-high heat. Cook the bacon until it is golden brown.
3. Add the garlic, onion, and mushrooms and sauté until the onions are translucent, about 10 minutes.
4. Combine the egg substitute, half and half, evaporated milk, tapioca flour, salt, and pepper in a bowl and mix well.
5. Pour half of the egg mixture into the pie crust. Add the bacon mixture and the carrots. Pour in the remaining egg mixture.
6. Reduce oven temperature to 350 degrees and bake quiche until custard is set and crust is golden brown, about 30-45 minutes.
This rice is mildly spiced because it’s designed to go with Grace’s Turkey in Turmeric Sauce. If you want the rice to carry most of the flavor, substitute coconut milk for half of the water. Then serve it with grilled turkey, chicken, or fish. Either way, you get both anti-inflammatory and antioxidant benefits from the fresh turmeric.
YIELDS 2 cups
1 cup jasmine rice
½ cup Fresh Turmeric Juice or 1 tsp. turmeric powder
2 cups water
1. Rinse rice under running water once. Drain and set aside.
2. Combine the turmeric juice or powder with 2 cups water in a large saucepan.
3. Add the rice to the turmeric water and bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer for
Spinach contains iron as well as age-defying antioxidants. Grapefruit is chock-full of vitamin C and potassium. You can use vitamin-C-packed pink or white grapefruit in this salad, though pink grapefruit has the added benefit of lycopene. If you use whole segments of the grapefruit, you’ll also add fiber. The candied walnuts and dried apricots balance the acidity of the grapefruit and increase the antioxidants in this dish. My Honey-Lime Dressing perfectly compliments the mellow flavor of the spinach.
1 bunch or 1 bag spinach leaves
1 whole grapefruit, segmented
¼ cup candied walnuts
¼ cup dried apricots
2 recipes Honey-Lime Dressing to taste.
1. Wash and stem the spinach leaves and place in a bowl.
2. Add the grapefruit, walnuts, and apricots.
3. Toss with dressing to taste.
FoodTrients is a unique approach to fresh, nutritional, and age-defying foods, which was originated by Grace O. FoodTrients is her name for the natural anti-aging properties of food.
Delicious foods and rejuvenating nutrients combine to create the award winning, The Age GRACEfully Cookbook: The Power of Foodtrients® to Promote Health and Well-being for a Joyful and Sustainable Life, a collection of enticing and nourishing recipes that promote health and well-being for a joyful and sustainable life. The recipes are built on the foundations of modern scientific research and ancient knowledge of medicinal herbs and natural ingredients from cultures all over the world.
There are many books about superfoods and supplements, but few provide at-a-glance guides in each recipe detailing key ingredients and how they increase health and longevity. Grace O’s cookbook focuses on five categories of FoodTrients that are essential to healthful living:
The beautifully illustrated recipes incorporate all the ingredients you need to look and feel younger, not only on the inside but also on the outside.
FoodTrients: what a wonderful way to start off the New Year!