Friday, November 29, 2013

Chefs' Wellness Series: Ned Bell

Four Seasons Vancouver executive chef Ned Bell brought the farm-to-table philosophy to YEW seafood + bar. He dishes on his approach to well-being and shares one of his favourite healthy recipes, a quinoa dish that's loaded with superfoods.

Fit Foodie's Chefs' Wellness Series will feature top chefs from throughout B.C. discussing their take on health and healthy eating.

Chef Ned Bell with his son, Max.
What do you do to stay physically healthy?

I stay physically fit by running, cycling--often to and from work--and wrestling with my four-year-old boy, Max. 

What do you do to keep healthy mentally and emotionally?
I try to spend time with my family, eat right, and exercise regularly.
What's your greatest challenge when it comes to health and well-being?
I work too much, and so my family time and exercise time suffer.
Why did you choose this dish to share with readers? 
Because it's tasty, healthy, and easy.
Ned Bell's BC Blueberry & Quinoa “Salad”
"There are three types of quinoa: golden, red and black," Chef Bell explains. "They all taste the same, but mixed together they look fantastic.
"Quinoa is a perfect protein: great for breakfast (like oatmeal), in protein bars, salads, and as carbohydrate replacements for lunch and dinner."

Keep in mind, too, that blueberries are high in cancer-fighting antioxidants. Some evidence suggests that flaxseed can reduce the risk of heart disease, stroke, cancer, and diabetes. Chia is a source of  fibre and healthy omega-3 fats. Hemp seeds are a source of protein as well.
2-3 cups cooked quinoa (red, black or golden)
¼ cup fresh BC blueberries
¼ cup dried BC blueberries
1 Tbsp chia seed
1 Tbsp flaxseed
1 Tbsp hemp seed
¼ cup each of toasted pumpkin and sunflower seeds
½ cup nuts (almonds, pistachios, hazelnuts, pecans, or walnuts)
2 Tbsp honey or maple syrup
2 Tbsp Greek yogurt (optional)

To assemble, mix all the ingredients together.
"This is a fantastic meal by itself or as a great side dish for roasted salmon, halibut, chicken, or steak," Chef Bell says.


Monday, November 25, 2013

Garlic may kill contaminants in baby formula

Foodies love garlic. Aside from being a standby in kitchens everywhere, it turns out the superfood might play another key role: making some types of infant formula safer.
According to a new study from the University of British Columbia published in Applied and Environmental Microbiology, two compounds derived from garlic – diallyl sulfide and ajoene – significantly reduce the contamination risk of Cronobacter sakazakii in the production of dry infant formula powder.
The discovery could make the product safer to consume, easing the minds of new mothers who can’t or opt not to breastfeed. (I'm personally all for breasfeeding exclusively for a baby's first six months then for as long as you feel like it, but there are valid reasons women can't or choose not to.)
C. sakazakii is a foodborne pathogen that is sometimes present in dry infant formula powder and other fortified foods. Infection is rare but often fatal for infants. It can poison a baby’s bloodstream and lead to life-threatening cases of meningitis. Outbreaks of C. sakazakii have occurred around the globe.
The natural compounds could also be used to clean the pipes used in the manufacturing process of milk products as an alternative to harsh chemicals like chlorine.
Garlic has also been found to be effective in treating or preventing colds, while it may play a role in helping protect against bowel and stomach cancers.
Get pressing!