by Joan E. Deady
You may have heard the expression “We are what we eat,” meaning the foods we eat have a huge influence on how our bodies grow, age and function. The fact is, we are also a product of how we select and prepare what we eat.
Educated and wise choices in food selection and cooking methods contribute to good health. Here are just a few scientifically sound findings on the subject:
Foods high in saturated fat and cholesterol contribute to heart disease.
Consumption of processed foods high in polyunsaturated trans fatty acids can lead to cancer.
There seems to be a correlation between obesity and the development of type 2 diabetes.
Fruits containing antioxidants and fish containing omega-3 fatty acids may slow aging and prevent cancer.
The evidence for the benefits of healthy food preparation and healthy eating is growing more convincing on an almost daily basis.
So what’s the problem? Most of our traditional methods of cooking — frying, boiling and liberal use of oils and fats, for example — generally don’t produce healthy meals. We haven’t trained ourselves to make the healthy cooking techniques produce tasty dishes. That's what this cookbook is all about.
Healthy cooking methods include steaming vegetables, baking in broth rather than in oil or butter, and using fresh foods instead of processed foods. The recipes in this cookbook follow these concepts. If oil is included, oils consisting of monounsaturated fats like canola oil or olive oil, which are found in the healthy Mediterranean diet, are recommended. None of the recipes call for red meat, which cuts back on saturated fat. The calories per serving are low. The ingredients in the recipes are readily available throughout the United States. Most recipes can be made in well less than 1 hour—many in as little as 15 minutes. The directions are easy to follow. They all taste so good that no one needs to know that these delicious treats are healthy food.
NO MORE Frozen Or Fast Food Meals!
Whether you've stopped enjoying fresh meals cooked at home because of time, taste, or trying to eat with health and weight in mind, get ready to resume, with gusto. The low-fat recipes in this cookbook are healthy, quick and easy, and they’re filled with wonderful flavors from California and around the world.
Three considerations inspired me to write this cookbook. As a nutritionist and a pharmacist, I understand how our bodies use food to support or undermine good health. As a working person, I understand the time demands of building and maintaining a career. I am an avid cook from a family that loves to cook, so I know that the benefits of home cooking go a long way beyond saving money and being able to control ingredients. Put all these aspects of my background together and you have a recipe for a uniquely useful cookbook.
There's no reason that healthy meals shouldn't taste great. The problem is that many cookbooks are so focused on health that flavor suffers. If you're really committed to eating for health, those kinds of flavorless meals may be fine for you, but try getting your spouse or your kids or your friends to eat them. I think that if you want healthy food to be eaten, it has to taste good. These healthy recipes go way beyond good, they’re fantastic!
Because these recipes are all very low in fat and largely use natural ingredients, you can enjoy their flavorful goodness without guilt. You will always know that you are keeping trim and doing your body a favor.
What good are great healthy recipes if you don't have the time or the know-how to prepare them? These recipes take into account that in today's busy world of single professionals and two-career families, people just can't spend hours shopping and cooking. The ingredients called for here are readily available in supermarkets and popular specialty stores. You don't have to be a rocket scientist or a gourmet chef to get them to the table. The recipes are simple and straightforward.
Whatever your reasons for hesitating to cook more at home, you can let them all go. These recipes will inspire you to create great-tasting meals at home again while you also enjoy the benefits of good health.