Stuffed Besan Cheela

We will not start this article with the dish’s health benefits but with the fundamental question for our international clients: What is a cheela?

The recipe for the week is Stuffed besan cheela, or one can say Indian chickpea tortilla or pancake. Chilla or cheela is a kind of Indian version of a pancake. It can be made with various lentil flours, mostly savory, but can be sweet too. Cheelas are generally vegan and gluten-free. 

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup chickpea flour
  • 1/4tsp Himalayan pink salt
  • 1/4tsp black pepper
  • Pinch of allspice
  • 50 g paneer
  • 1small onion chopped
  • 2 green chili chopped finely
  • 1tsp Cow’s ghee

Method

  • Mix chickpea flour with seasoning and water to make a batter
  • Keep aside for 5 minutes
  • Crumble paneer and veggies with the seasoning and keep aside
  • Heat a pan and spread ghee on it
  • On medium heat, pour some batter into the pan and spread it around nice and evenly and let it cook on medium heat
  • Once the base is cooked, separate it from the pan and flip over
  • Add paneer mix on half of the cheela and wrap the other half over it
  • Cook till golden brown

We have stuffed it with paneer to be a high protein recipe, simple and easy to cook and comes together in less than 30 minutes right from the preparation to cooking the cheelas. Please go ahead and add all sorts of seasonal vegetables and herbs as you like to make the dish more nutritious. Traditionally, it is made for breakfast, but sometimes also for a quick snack, especially with evening indian chai or post-workout. This is one of the best recipes with chickpea flour.

What is Chickpea Flour?

Chickpea flour is also known as gram flour, besan, & garbanzo bean flour. It is made by grinding whole uncooked, dried chickpeas until a fine powder (flour) forms. This flour is very versatile, commonly used in Indian and Pakistani savory and sweet dishes.

Chickpea flour makes an excellent gluten-free flour due to its naturally sticky gluten-like properties and is a great flour to use in vegan recipes due to its outstanding binding properties, leaving no need for eggs. 

Below are the top health benefits of chickpeas, which are also known as garbanzo beans:

Health Benefits of Chickpeas

Improves Heart Health

Chickpeas are loaded with selenium, magnesium, potassium, vitamin B, fiber, and iron, all of which support heart health. For example, fiber helps lower the total cholesterol in the blood, which reduces the risk of heart disease. It may also remove plaque from the arteries and improve their health.

Chickpeas contain a plant sterol called sitosterol, which is structurally quite similar to the cholesterol in our body. It may interfere with the body’s absorption of cholesterol and thereby can help to lower blood cholesterol levels. ((<https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5188421/>)) , ((<https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4016088/>))

Chickpeas have a low glycemic load (9.3)and low glycemic index (30)and contain amylose, a resistant starch that digests slowly. These factors, along with fiber and protein, help prevent sudden surges in blood sugar and insulin levels, improving overall blood sugar control in people with type 2 diabetes. ((<https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/18502235/>)), ((<https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/28303049/>)), ((<https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4083349/>)), ((<https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5883628/>))

Improves Gut Health

Chickpeas have soluble dietary fiber called raffinose which assists the colon in the digestive process. It maintains the health of the digestive tract by flushing out toxins and improving gut health. It may decrease digestive conditions, such as irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) and colon cancer. ((<https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK559033/>)), ((<https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5188421/>))

Prevent Obesity

Chickpeas are high-fiber and high-protein food that may help to promote the feeling of satiety and fullness by delaying digestion and adding bulk to meals. This factor can also help in better weight management. ((<https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/28303049/>)), ((<https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5188421/>))

Related:

https://fabulousbody.com/bean-the-complete-guide-protein-content-in-bean/

https://fabulousbody.com/7-protein-rich-vegetarian-foods/

Chickpea flour is high in protein, iron, fiber and low in fat, has no cholesterol. Do mix it with other gluten-free flour to increase the protein, use it in sweet or savory baked goods. We can mix with equal parts water and use it as an egg replacement in your recipes. (1-2  tbsp chickpea flour mixed with 1-2  tbsp water = 1 egg) to make vegan omelets and quiches.

Apart from chickpea flour, another healthy ingredient in this dish is paneer or cottage cheese. Paneer is suitable for people who have diabetes. It is rich in omega-3 fatty acids, which is ideal for the mental development of kids. It is also beneficial for heart diseases as paneer regulates blood pressure and controls cholesterol levels.

So try out this Indian breakfast recipe this way, or with any individual variation.

We would love to hear what you think about this recipe in the comments section below!

Apple Salad With Walnuts

Staying in good physical shape is a global yearning. We are all ready to do everything possible to stay healthy and in form, from extensive exercises, various diet plans, and desperate measures to undergoing a surgical procedure.

There is no shortcut, but I believe that ‘What we eat’ is the essential thing when it comes to losing weight, apart from an excellent physical workout to complement it.

Salads are a very healthy option in comparison to conventional cooked food, and hence why most of us resort to healthy salad for weight loss and to maintain a healthy lifestyle.

Ingredients

  • 1 medium or 180 g apple with skin 
  • 1 cup or 30 g baby spinach
  • 6 halves of walnut kernels
  • 1 tbsp heavy cream, 
  • 1 tsp ground fennel seeds, 
  • ¼ tsp Himalayan pink salt
  • ¼ tsp black pepper

Method

  • Cut the apple into slices and tear the baby spinach leaves to the desired size
  • Mix ground fennel seeds, heavy cream & salt
  • Toss this with the other ingredients

Keeping our motto at Fabulous body in mind, let me introduce a healthy salad for weight loss, and  the recipe for the week is Apple salad with walnuts,

This delicious, crunchy, colorful salad is under 250 calories, providing a decent amount of fiber, protein, vitamin A and K, and a healthy balance of fats from the three main ingredients: apples, Spinach, and walnuts.

To know the health benefits of apples and walnuts, keep scrolling down.

Health Benefits Of Eating Apple

Apples and Cancer

Apples are a good source of antioxidants and beta carotene. Various studies show that consuming antioxidant-rich foods may help prevent oxidative stress that causes cell damage, leading to certain cancers. 

A study published by Cambridge University in 2016 suggested that consuming apples may help lower the risk of lung cancer, breast cancer, and colorectal cancer.  ((<https://www.cambridge.org/core/journals/public-health-nutrition/article/apple-intake-and-cancer-risk-a-systematic-review-and-metaanalysis-of-observational-studies/FA751EC6DB3CA3627E0218950AC106CC>))

Another study, done between 1991 and 2002 in Italy, also observed that those who consumed one or more apples a day had a 20% lower risk of colorectal cancer and an 18% lower risk of breast cancer. ((<https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/16091428/>))

Epidemiologists or disease detectives suggest that regular consumption of apples and apple products may be a helpful master plan for cancer prevention. ((<https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/18855307/>))

Apples and Heart Health

Apart from insoluble fiber, apples also have soluble fiber, such as pectin, which helps prevent cholesterol from building up in blood vessels’ lining, preventing atherosclerosis and heart disease. ((<https://eurofir.eu/bacchus/wp-content/uploads/sites/5/2017/10/TIFTS-Nicola-P.-Bondonno-Catherine-P.-Bondonno-Natalie-C.-Ward-Jonathan-M.-Hodgson->))

A study conducted in 2011 showed that women who ate about 75 grams (one-third cup) of dried apples every day for at least six months had a 23% decrease in bad (LDL) cholesterol and a 4% rise in good (HDL) cholesterol.

Apples and Type 2 Diabetes

Studies suggest that consuming whole fruits, particularly blueberries, grapes, and apples, is significantly correlated with a lower risk of type 2 diabetes. 

The American Diabetes Association recommends eating fresh fruit, including apples, to satisfy a sweet tooth and provide nutrition while keeping a watch on the fruit’s carbohydrate content. ((<https://www.diabetes.org/healthy-living/recipes-nutrition/eating-well/fruit?language_content_entity=en>))

Consumption of fruits high in soluble and insoluble fiber like apples is associated with improved glucose metabolism in diabetic and nondiabetic individuals. ((<https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3183591/>))

Related:

https://fabulousbody.com/apples-its-health-benefitsis-apple-good-for-weight-loss/

Health Benefits Of Eating Walnuts

Walnuts and Antioxidants

Antioxidants are more abundant in walnuts than in any other nut due to vitamin E, melatonin, and polyphenols found in their papery skin. ((<https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/26882685/>))

These compounds help to decrease LDL (bad) cholesterol and triglycerides. In addition, polyphenols can help fight oxidative stress and inflammation in our bodies. Chronic inflammation can give rise to a lot of health issues in our bodies. ((<https://academic.oup.com/nutritionreviews/article/65/suppl_3/S140/1911839>))

Walnuts and Heart 

A study done over the last 32 years at Harvard T.H Chan School of Public Health suggested that eating small quantities of walnuts few times a week can lower the risk of cardiovascular disease by 14% and coronary heart disease by 20%.

So, to protect the heart for longer and healthier life, it is good to incorporate walnuts into the diet. ((<https://www.jacc.org/doi/full/10.1016/j.jacc.2017.09.035>))

Various researches have linked walnuts with an impact on reducing the risk of prostate, colon, colorectal, and breast cancers.

Walnuts and Omega-3

Walnuts are a good source of omega-3s found within the membranes of human cells and play a critical role in the body’s fundamental processes.

One ounce (28g) or 14 walnut halves provides about 2.5g of ALA (alpha-linolenic acid), and walnuts are the best source of omega-3 amongst all nuts.

Various researches have linked walnuts with an impact on reducing the risk of prostate, colon, colorectal, and breast cancers. ((<https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2412899/>))

Related:

https://fabulousbody.com/benefits-of-walnuts-how-many-walnuts-should-you-eat-per-day/

The third element of this salad, Spinach, may help lower blood pressure, enhance physical performance, eye health, cancer prevention, and protection against oxidative stress. ((<https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/18250365/>)), ((<https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/9367061/>))

Spinach could also be a beneficial food for weight loss, as it is low in calories and has a high fiber content. A research hinted that  spinach extract containing green leaf membranes called thylakoids decreases hedonic hunger with up to 95%  and increases weight loss with 43%. ((<https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/09/140902114928.htm>))

Related:

https://fabulousbody.com/spinach-nutrition-facts-and-health-benefits/

Eating healthy foods aid in helping the body feel energetic and filled with vitality.And this delicious less than 250-calorie salad can be instrumental for the desired weight loss and a healthy body as it provides a good balance of fiber, protein and healthy fats from spinach, apples and walnuts, all tossed in a tangy lemon and cream vinaigrette with flavourful fennel seeds..This recipe for the week salad can be a side dish or the choice of the meal.

Do watch out for our healthy recipies.

Spinach Soup

I sincerely believe in the saying, ‘You are what you eat’ as in what we consume daily characterizes our tastes and health. From my childhood, the cartoon character ‘Popeye the sailor man’ showed us that eating spinach was the way to a healthy and robust body.

Trust me, the impact on my mindset was so strong that I made sure that my children watch Popeye’s show regularly. And it worked; they love their greens in every shape and form.

So I would like to share my favorite recipe for the week, Spinach soup.

Ingredients

  • 2 cups(60-80g) fresh spinach
  • 2 tbsp (60-70g) onion
  • 2-3 cloves garlic 
  • 2 tbsp ginger
  • 1 tbsp wheat flour 
  • 100ml cow’s milk
  • ¼ tsp  Himalayan pink salt 
  • 1 tsp(5g) ghee
  • ¼ tsp ground black pepper for seasoning

Method

  • Sauté spinach with onions, ginger, garlic in ghee. Add water and let it simmer.
  • Heat some milk and slowly add whole wheat flour so as not to form any lumps. Cook until thickened and mix in the soup.
  • Simmer for 10-15 minutes and puree the mix.
  • Season and cook for a couple of minutes and serve.

Nutritional Info

Calories197.1 kcal
Protein8.2 g
Carbs19.8 g
Dietary Fats8.9 g
Fiber4.2 g
Vitamin A9597.7 IU
Vitamin E2 mg
Vitamin K445 µg

This dish is enriched with the goodness of spinach, cow’s ghee, wheat flour, onions, milk and seasoned with herbs and spices. Anyone can whip up this easy snack recipe in a few minutes, and much of the cooking time is just for simmering.

Studies also suggest that to retain maximum iron in the spinach, it will only need to be boiled for a short time before consuming ((<https://www.researchgate.net/publication/321212051_DETERMINATION_OF_IRON_CONTENT_IN_SPINACH-A_TITRIMETRIC_STUDY>))

This easy snack recipe is also very versatile, it is a hot and inviting soup for winter, but it is also light, so it works in the summer. You can enjoy it as a snack, along with a salad or serve it before dinner as an appetizer for the family.

Spinach is a superfood of green leafy vegetables, low in calories, full of nutrients that are good for the body in many ways. For example, it boosts the immune system and the body’s defense against germs to help your heart. Its advantages might surprise you. So check out the recipe for spinach soup or Palak soup(as called in India), along with its benefits.

Spinach Health Benefits

Spinach (Spinacia oleracea L.) is native to central Asia and belongs to the family Chenopodiaceae. For ages, spinach has been used in various cuisines in many different ways due to its versatile taste and texture.

Spinach is an excellent source of vitamin A, vitamin K, magnesium, manganese, folic acid, iron, vitamin C, vitamin B2, vitamin B6, vitamin E, potassium and a decent source of dietary fiber, and omega-3 fatty acids. All of which are essential for the maintenance, improvement, and regulation of human tissues. ((<https://fdc.nal.usda.gov/fdc-app.html#/food-details/1750353/nutrients>))

Spinach contains carotenoids, polyphenols and the most sulfoquinovosyl diacylglycerol (SQDG) and monogalactosyl diacylglycerol (MGDG), which are cancer-preventing components. ((<https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/17439396/>)), ((<https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/17571956/>)), ((<https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/B9780123746283000268>))

Read this full-length article on our website to understand the nutritional benefits of spinach in detail. ((<https://fabulousbody.com/spinach-nutrition-facts-and-health-benefits/>))

Benefits Of Spinach Soup

A few of the benefits are of the nutrient-dense spinach soup are:

Good soup for weight loss

It is a good soup for weight loss as spinach, onion, ginger and garlic are low in calories and fat. In addition, they have a high water and fiber content that may help prevent constipation and promote a healthy digestive tract. ((<https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/11396693/>))

Promote Satiety

A Study hinted that thylakoid extracts from spinach might reduce the urge to eat, as they lower levels of a hunger hormone and raise hormones that make you feel full. ((<https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4600649/>))

Helps stabilize blood sugar

According to studies, spinach also helps keep the blood sugar level stable and LDL cholesterol levels down. ((<https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5018658/>))

Contributes to hydration

We all think that the only way to hydrate the body is by drinking water, but food can also help us reach that goal. For example, spinach and onion are vegetables that are nearly all water. This is another very good way to keep weight in check.

Boosts Immune System

Spinach has vitamins and minerals like vitamin E and magnesium that support your immune system. This system keeps you safe from viruses, bacteria and toxins that cause disease.

Spinach is rich in iron, a crucial mineral essential to regulate cell growth. As per NIH (National Institutes of Health), iron is required by the protein in our RBC( red blood cell) hemoglobin to transport oxygen to tissues throughout our body. ((<https://ods.od.nih.gov/factsheets/Iron-Consumer/>))

Rich in Antioxidants

Green, leafy vegetables, including spinach, contain rich amounts of beneficial antioxidants such as vitamin E. This antioxidant can help slow the decline of cognitive ability and mental performance. As a result, the mind may stay younger, and learning capacity and motor skills may improve. 

Study results indicate that spinach extract is a potential source of natural antioxidants, and its consumption improves antioxidant status. ((<https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3999804/>))

Anti-inflammatory

Inflammation plays a role in asthma, migraine headaches, osteoporosis and rheumatoid arthritis. Anti-inflammatory nutrients include a component of vitamin A known as beta carotene, vitamin K, magnesium, riboflavin, and vitamin C.

Eating foods like spinach soup that have anti-inflammation perks is a way to reduce the inflammation in your body. ((<https://sciencenordic.com/antioxidants-forskningno-infection/eat-your-spinach-its-good-for-your-heart/1461508>))

According to new research, the best way to obtain antioxidant lutein is dark green vegetables. Therefore, researchers have compared different ways of preparing fresh spinach to maximize lutein levels in finished food. ((<https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2018/12/181221123810.htm>))

Improves Bone Health

Spinach has calcium, manganese, and vitamin K, which are essential for healthy bones. Fresh spinach contributes more than the daily requirement of vitamin K. Vitamin K helps prevent osteoclasts from breaking down bone. 

Our body is constantly getting rid of and rebuilding bone tissue. Osteoporosis is a condition that makes your bones weak and breaks easily, and it happens when the amount of new bone isn’t replacing enough of the broken down bone. So if we don’t get enough calcium throughout our life, your chances of getting osteoporosis are higher. ((<https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/11684396/>)), ((<https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5726210/>)), ((<https://www.healthlinkbc.ca/healthy-eating/everyone/food-and-nutrition/vitamin-k>))

For Healthy Skin And Hair

Spinach is abundant in Vitamin A, which moderates oil production in the skin pores and hair follicles to moisturize the skin and hair. Vitamin A is also essential for the growth of primary bodily tissues, including hair and skin.

Green leafy vegetables, including spinach, are high in vitamin C, which is crucial for building and maintaining collagen, making structure to hair and skin.

Iron deficiency is one of the common causes of hair loss that may be counteracted by sufficient consumption of iron-rich foods like spinach. ((<https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5315033/>))

Iron deficiency can result in fatigue, decreased immunity and poor work performance. The iron in spinach soup is especially needed by children, menstruating and lactating women, the elderly and adolescents. ((<https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3999603/>)) 

Many people do not like its taste despite its fantastic health benefits. However, we hope that these above interesting facts will change the way you think about this leafy green. And If you’re interested in good health, try and pass on this recipe for spinach soup to all your loved ones.

Let us know in the comments if you liked it!

Broccoli And Almond Salad

Broccoli and almond salad! This salad is a healthier spin on any plant or animal-based salad, and it’s every bit as flavorful. The flavor combination of this salad is delicious, from the crunch of the broccoli and almonds, paired with onions, sweet raisins, toasted almonds and creamy dressing. 

It doesn’t matter the time of year or the occasion, and this cold broccoli salad recipe is a hit with every one, every thing, and at any time!

Ingredients

  • Raw Broccoli, Cut into tiny florets
  • Roasted, unsalted Almonds
  • Raisins
  • Onion
  • Heavy Cream (1 Tbsp) 
  • Himalayan Pink Salt 
  • Ground Black Pepper
  • Lemon Juice

Method

  • Slice the Almonds & Onions
  • Mix the Heavy Cream with the seasoning in a mixing bowl
  • Add the other ingredients to this bowl and toss the salad till everything has a light coating
  • Serve in a bowl.

Nutritional Info

Calories280 kcal
Protein9.3 g
Carbs18.9 g
Dietary Fats5.0 g
Fiber7.0 g
Vitamin A8702.1 IU
Vitamin E7.7 mg
Vitamin K94.5 µg
*approximate values

It’s the recipe for the week and the perfect healthy salad for weight loss. It is a fresher, more nutritious version loaded with vegetables high in fiber.

The big question regarding this recipe for the week is, what are the health benefits of broccoli?

What Are The Health Benefits Of Broccoli

About one cup of raw, chopped broccoli contains only 31 calories, 6 g of carbohydrates, and 3 g of fiber. The fiber in a cup of raw broccoli supports a robust digestive system and feeds beneficial bacteria in the gut, boosting immunity. The exact quantity of broccoli also contains over 80 ml (3oz) of water. The fiber and water combination of broccoli promotes feelings of fullness and supports healthy weight management. And hence broccoli is a popular addition to meals for those looking to lose weight while staying healthy. It is also a good source of the following:

Vitamin C

Vitamin C is an antioxidant essential for immune function, healthy skin, blood vessels, bones and cartilages. Vitamin C is also considered to impact cancer (including prevention and treatment), cardiovascular disease, age-related macular degeneration (AMD) and cataracts, and the common cold. ((<https://ods.od.nih.gov/factsheets/VitaminC-HealthProfessional/#h7>))

Vitamin K

Broccoli has a high quantity of vitamin K, which is vital for blood clotting and may promote bone health. A deficiency in vitamin K increases the risk of excessive bleeding (hemorrhage). ((<https://ods.od.nih.gov/factsheets/VitaminK-HealthProfessional/#en5>))

Vitamin B9/Folate

It is needed for healthy tissue growth and cell function and is very important for pregnant women. Folate works with vitamin B12 and vitamin C to help the body break down, use, and create new proteins. In addition, it assists in the formation of red blood cells. ((<https://ods.od.nih.gov/factsheets/Folate-Consumer/>))

Potassium

It is an essential mineral beneficial for keeping blood pressure in control and preventing heart diseases. In addition, a potassium-rich diet helps to counterbalance some of sodium’s harmful effects on blood pressure. ((<https://ods.od.nih.gov/factsheets/Potassium-Consumer/>))

Manganese

Manganese is a trace element that helps the body form connective tissue, bones, blood-clotting factors, and sex hormones. It also plays a role in fat and carbohydrate metabolism, calcium absorption, and blood sugar regulation. ((<https://ods.od.nih.gov/factsheets/Manganese-Consumer/>))

Related: 

https://fabulousbody.com/health-benefits-and-nutritional-value-of-broccoli/

https://fabulousbody.com/almonds-benefits-for-health-how-many-almonds-in-a-day/

Why should we include vegetables in our diet?

“Do not throw your vegetables” a threat I have heard from my mother my entire young life. Foolishly I did not understand the importance then, but funnily, now I encourage my children to add vegetables to their diet along with animal protein.

The American Cancer Society advises at least five servings of fruit and vegetables per day for good health and to reduce cancer risk. However, it’s enough to make one wonder exactly why vegetables are so important to human health. ((<https://www.cancer.org/healthy/eat-healthy-get-active/acs-guidelines-nutrition-physical-activity-cancer-prevention/guidelines.html>))

Antioxidants and Vitamins

One of the primary health benefits of vegetables is their high-level nutrient content. They are loaded with minerals and vitamins that contribute to the growth and maintenance of outstanding total health. 

For example, the U.S. Department of Agriculture suggests that many vegetables are high in potassium, which is crucial for healthy blood pressure. In addition, various vitamins, such as C and A, help keep eyes, skin, teeth and gums healthy, fight infection and promote wound healing. 

Vegetables are also rich in a particular group of nutrients called antioxidants, which fight cellular damage. As a result, they may help prevent or reduce heart disease, cancer, Parkinson’s disease, atherosclerosis, heart attack and Alzheimer’s disease. ((<https://www.myplate.gov/eat-healthy/vegetables>)), ((<https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4644575/>))

Fiber

Another significant benefit of vegetables is dietary fiber. Fiber is an essential nutrient available only in plant foods. Dietary Fiber includes the parts of plant foods that our body can’t digest or absorb. 

A crucial role of many types of fiber is their property to act as prebiotics, substances that influence the classes and activities of the bacteria that survive inside the human gut. ((<https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3649719/>))

Related :

https://fabulousbody.com/what-is-fiber-health-benefits-food-sources-and-daily-requirements/

Weight-loss friendly

Vegetables are also a boon to people on diets as they are generally low in fat and calories. As a result, one may eat many of them without gaining weight. 

In addition, if you substitute vegetables for other, higher-calorie foods in your diet, you will reduce your fat and calorie intake, making weight management more effortless. 

Fiber makes us feel fuller for a more extended period, helping us eat less overall and aiding with weight loss or maintenance. ((<https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6266069/>))

More and more studies are being conducted to confirm the impact of our diet on our health. For example, a new UCLA/Louisiana State University study of dietary data on more than 17,500 men and women finds consumption of salad and raw vegetables correlates with higher concentrations of folic acid, vitamins C and E, lycopene and alpha and beta carotene in the bloodstream. ((<https://ph.ucla.edu/news/press-release/2011/mar/uclalsu-study-details-nutritional-value-salad>))

I hope we don’t need more proof to include salads in our dietary habits. But suppose you need more salad inspiration. Would you please stay connected?

Let us know what you think about the recipe in the comments section!

Thai Chicken Wraps

As a health-conscious person and parent, I strive every day to make healthy and high-protein meals at home. Today I would like to share a healthy wrap recipe for lunch. Its Thai chicken wrap, a straightforward wrap recipe, a healthy and delicious one for every age group. 

Ingredients

  • 85 g boneless chicken breast, skinless
  • 2 tsp olive oil
  • ¼ tsp Himalayan pink salt
  • ¼ tsp ground black pepper
  • 40-45 g cucumber, with peel
  • 2 tsp fresh cilantro
  • 2, 8-inch whole-wheat tortillas
  • 2 tsp Thai-style satay peanut sauce (or any Thai sauce of your choice)

Method

  • Heat a grill pan over high heat 
  • Rub chicken breasts with oil, and sprinkle with salt and pepper
  • Add chicken to the pan, and reduce heat to medium
  • Cook 6 minutes on each side (depending on the thickness of meat) or until cooked through. Remove from pan, let sit for 5 minutes, and slice diagonally into pieces
  • Combine the cucumber slices and chopped cilantro in a bowl
  • Assemble the wraps just before you are ready to serve.
  • Heat a nonstick skillet over medium heat, and heat tortillas for 15-20 seconds on each side
  • Spread 1 tbsp satay sauce on each tortilla
  • Top each with chicken slices and 1/4 of the cucumber mixture
  • Fold in sides of tortillas and serve immediately

Nutritional Info

Calories587 kcal
Protein37.4 g
Carbs53 g
Dietary Fats23.4 g
Fiber7.9 g
Vitamin B314.9 mg
Vitamin K18.7 ug
* approximate values

This easy wrap recipe is healthy as the ingredients I have chosen to place inside the wrap are not only high in protein, but the wrap itself is made of whole wheat. Let’s look at the ingredients more closely. The first one is chicken:

Chicken

With every year, more and more people focus on what they eat and desire to be healthier. Ask any fitness-conscious individual or a bodybuilder about their primary source of lean and high protein meal. 

The answer will mostly be the same for any non-vegetarian; that would be chicken meat. Chicken is highly nutritious and a good source of protein. In addition, adding chicken to your diet may help support weight loss, muscle growth, and bone health.

Chicken is a versatile, highly digestible and adaptable protein. Easy to cook, inexpensive compared to many other sources of animal protein. It has unsaturated lipids (mainly found in the skin and easily removed), B-group vitamins (mainly thiamin, vitamin B6), and minerals like iron, zinc, and copper. ((<https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4462824/>))

An 85 g or 3-oz of boneless, skinless chicken breast packs 26 g of protein, containing all the amino acids essential for human health. Protein is a significant building block of all muscular tissues in the body, including skeletal muscle and smooth muscle found in the walls of our intestines. ((<https://fdc.nal.usda.gov/fdc-app.html#/food-details/331960/nutrients>)), ((<https://fdc.nal.usda.gov/fdc-app.html#/food-details/171450/nutrients>))

When it comes to diet planning or healthy eating, protein is the first macronutrient that we calculate for optimal benefits. According to the National Academy of Medicine, the RDA (Recommended daily allowance) for protein is 0.8g/kg body weight for a sedentary individual. 

However, numerous studies suggest an intake of approximately double the RDA for active individuals, ranging between 1.2 to 2g/kg of body weight. Including more protein in the diet may increase the satiety effect that leads to a feeling of fullness. ((<https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK56068/table/summarytables.t1/?report=objectonly>))

When we go to the grocery store and try to buy chicken, the labels can be very confusing. Below is a small guide that can help you to understand how to choose your poultry.

Free-range– This means that the bird has been allowed access to be outside the cage.

Fresh– This chicken has never been below 26 °F (the temperature at which poultry freezes).

Natural– No artificial ingredients nor added color. 

No hormones– Chickens aren’t raised with injecting hormones.

No antibiotics– This term indicates when the chicken was raised without any antibiotics for maintenance, prevention of disease or its treatment. Other medications not classified as antibiotics may still be used.

Organic– This term means that all feed must be certified organic, with no synthetic fertilizers or pesticides, animal by-products or other additives.

And probably that’s the best way to enjoy fresh chicken and free of unwanted additives and raised using standards for sustainability and humane treatment.

Here are a few articles related to protein:

https://fabulousbody.com/knowledgebase/how-much-protein-from-chicken-breast-and-whole-chicken/

https://fabulousbody.com/knowledgebase/is-it-ok-to-consume-250-300grams-of-chicken-meat-per-day/

Whole wheat wrap

Wraps seem to have a much healthier reputation than sandwiches. However, whether or not a wrap is healthy depends on the ingredients one chooses to place in the wrap and the nutritional quality of the wrap itself.

Whole-wheat wraps are more nutritious than plain refined-flour wraps, so I try to find which are made of  100% whole wheat. 

Whole grains are suggested to be a healthier choice in numerous dietary guidelines. Compared to refined carbohydrates, whole grains contain many beneficial nutrients that primarily reside in the outer hulls of the grains removed during milling to produce fine grain products. 

In laboratory research and human feeding trials, whole grains and constituents of whole grains provide many benefits, such as insoluble fiber, magnesium, and phytochemicals, that significantly impact glucose metabolism, blood lipids, and antioxidant activity and inflammation.

In addition, studies have consistently found inverse associations between whole-grain intake and lower risk of type 2 diabetes (T2D) and cardiovascular diseases (CVD). ((<https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6115963/>)) , ((<https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4429593/>))

Cucumber

For lunch, a healthy wrap recipe should consist of healthy protein with greens or vegetables with just a little dressing for flavor. Vegetables are packed with fiber and nutrients, and we all know how good fiber is for our digestive tract.

A serving of cucumber, one-half a cup is only eight calories, and about 95% is water that can help you stay hydrated.

Cucumbers have small amounts of vitamin K that may help in blood clots and keep the bones healthy.

They provide vitamin A which may help with vision, the immune system, and reproduction. It also makes sure organs like the heart, lungs, and kidneys work properly.

Cucumbers also have several phytonutrients called lignans that may help prevent or delay heart disease, osteoporosis, and a few kinds of cancers.

Antioxidants such as beta carotene in cucumbers can help fight free radicals in your body, leading to various diseases.

Peanut Sauce

While most peanut sauces may provide us with a healthy dose of protein, vitamins and minerals, they’re also high in calories and fat. 

We need to keep the serving size small and ensure that the food plate is balanced with items from few food groups.

If you want to add few more ingredients, go ahead and add some diced avocado, tomatoes, baby spinach, lettuce or whatever your heart desires and enjoy this tasty wrap any time of the day.

The difference between a wrap that we make at home and one that we purchase at a fast food chain is that 99% of the times, the ones bought at the fast food chain are loaded with synthetic ingredients, flavor enhancers, preservatives, salt, trans-fats and such.

In comparison, what we make at home is always made with the best of ingredients that we can get and if we can make it delicious then why not enjoy food that pleases the eye and our taste buds both at home.

Let us know how you like this recipe in the comments section below!

Three Beans Salad

Recently I had a guest over for dinner who was vegan. Since I am not a vegan, it became challenging to figure out a vegan salad recipe. But the other challenge was to create a healthy salad for weight loss, as the guest was on a strict weight loss diet.

So I picked out a few vegan salads to try and was very excited and energized after making this three-bean salad, assembled in 15 minutes or less. So much so that it qualified as our recipe for the week.

Ingredients

  • Pre-cooked mixed beans( Red, Black-eyed, Black)- 70 gm each or about 3/4 cup
  • 1 small onion(70 g), chopped
  • 1 small tomato(90 g) chopped
  • 1 tsp mint leaves
  • 1/2 a lemon’s juice
  • ¼ tsp Himalayan pink salt
  • ¼ tsp chilli flakes

Method

  • Cut all vegetables in the desired shape
  • Add the cut vegetables and beans to a bowl
  • Add all the seasonings from the top and mix

Nutritional Info

Calories319.2 kcal
Protein19.6 g
Carbs45.2 g
Dietary Fats1.6 g
Fiber14.7 g
Vitamin A765.8 IU
Folate367.8 µg
Vitamin C28.4 mg
*approximate values

We are using three types of beans in the recipe to get maximum salad benefit. Want to make it just one bean salad, or want to use four different beans? Go ahead! Do it your way. Use any kind of beans that you like. 

The salad dressing is fresh and vibrant with herbs. The zing from lemon juice gives it a nice flavor kick and fresh mint leaves, a very refreshing taste.

Beans, a staple of the Mediterranean pantry, are healthy, versatile and rich in antioxidants, fiber, B vitamins, iron. Plus, they’re an excellent hearty alternative to high-fat proteins.

Beans are also an excellent replacement for meat as a source of vegetarian protein, which is why non-vegetarians don’t consume it much. Here are the reasons why they are suitable for everyone:

Are mixed beans good for you?

Beans are classified as legumes, seeds from flowering plants in the Fabaceae family. There are many types of beans like lima beans, black beans, black-eyed peas, soybeans, kidney beans, garbanzo beans, navy beans, pinto beans and red beans.

Here is an article related to this topic:

https://fabulousbody.com/bean-the-complete-guide-protein-content-in-bean/

Mixing the beans is a good idea as navy beans have more calcium; cranberry beans score high in folate, and garbanzos and limas are exceptionally high in iron. In addition, Navy beans are packed with starch, adzukis are high in potassium, and red and black varieties are rich in disease-fighting antioxidants.

Fiber

Beans are a great source of fiber. Fiber helps keep you regular and protects against heart disease, high cholesterol, high blood pressure, and helps to foster healthy bacteria in the gut.

Related:

https://fabulousbody.com/what-is-fiber-health-benefits-food-sources-and-daily-requirements/

The fiber in beans helps to soothe blood sugar spikes and keep us full for a  longer time, which may help with weight loss and preventing insulin resistance and type 2 diabetes. ((<https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/23885994/>)), ((<https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3901975/>))

Protein

Protein is an essential nutrient that plays a crucial role in the maintenance and repair of our bodies. So it is because they are high in amino acids, the building blocks of protein.

Beans are a great way to get the low-fat, low-calorie protein that is high in dietary fiber.  A single cup has around 15 grams, two to three times more than rice or wheat. 

High-protein diets may prove as a successful strategy to prevent or treat obesity and better body weight management. ((<https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/25926512/>))

Folate

Folate is a water-soluble B-vitamin that our body needs to produce new red blood cells. Folate even aids in making DNA and RNA transcritical for muscle repair and healthy cells and preventing damage from free radicals. ((<https://ods.od.nih.gov/factsheets/Folate-Consumer/>))

Heart Health

People who consume beans regularly may be less likely to die of a heart attack or other cardiovascular problem. ((<https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/11718588/>))

According to the Department of Health and Human Services, beans are high in soluble fiber; 5 to 10 grams of it per day can reduce LDL (bad) cholesterol by up to 5 percent. Cooked beans contain 0.6 to 2.4 grams of soluble fiber per half-cup. ((<https://www.ag.ndsu.edu/publications/food-nutrition/all-about-beans-nutrition-health-benefits-preparation-and-use-in-menus>))

Weight Loss

Beans may help with weight loss. Various studies indicated that including one portion of beans, peas, chickpeas, or lentils daily could contribute to a decent weight loss. A  new study suggests eating about 3/4 cup (130 grams) each day of pulses led to a weight loss of 0.34 kilograms (about half a pound). ((<https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2016/03/160330135255.htm\>)), ((<https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3901975/>)), ((<https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7294352/>))

Researchers think that weight loss may be because beans increase the sense of fullness and modulate blood sugar levels.

Three bean salad is not only a vegan salad recipe but also a vegan high-protein snack. So what is vegan?

What is vegan?

It might be the most routine question about veganism. A vegan diet contains only plants such as vegetables, fruits, grains, nuts, seeds and legumes.

They eat bread, rice, pasta, dairy alternatives such as soymilk, coconut milk, almond milk, and all kinds of vegetable oils.

Vegans don’t eat any foods made from animals, such as meats, fish, eggs etc.

It also includes cheese, butter, milk, cream, ice cream, and other dairy products, mayonnaise and honey.

Veganism may sound like a new concept, but we have evidence that people who choose to avoid animal products can be traced back to over 2,000 years.

You can read more about vegan diet here:

https://fabulousbody.com/is-a-vegan-diet-healthy-vegan-diet-pros-and-cons/

Mint

Mint or Mentha belongs to the Lamiaceae family, which contains around 15 to 20 plant species, including peppermint and spearmint. It is a popular herb used fresh or dried in many dishes and infusions.

Studies have found that mint works against harmful microbes, regulates muscle relaxation, and helps control inflammation.

Mint contains menthol, an aromatic decongestant that might help break up phlegm and mucus, making it easier to expel. ((<https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5814329/>)), ((<https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6594199/>))

Now that we have explored the health benefits of the recipe for the week, we can make healthier food choices for ourselves.

Salads are one of the best ways in many cuisines to combine the goodness of different ingredients in one plate. 

Do let us know if you liked this recipe!

Lentil Soup

I have the fondest memories of homemade lentil soup, or I would say dal times(in India) every evening made by my mom. I would come home from a tiring long day of school, and we were always so hungry and exhausted. A filling lentil soup was the perfect nourishment for my energy-deprived and weary body and soul. 

Since we had a vegetarian household, lentils were a big part of our diet. Extraordinary nutritional value combined with exceptional economy makes this vegetarian lentil soup a winner in every way.

I want to share the best recipe for lentil soup with my readers. So here is the perfect recipe for the week as a meal and a healthy homemade snack. Feel free to modify the herbs, spices and vegetables to suit your tastes.

Ingredients

  • Pre-cooked lentils (198 g)
  • Onion, chopped (60 g)
  • Tomato, chopped (82 g)
  • Ginger, chopped or grated (1 tsp)
  • Garlic, chopped or grated (1 tsp)
  • Parsley, chopped (1 tsp)
  • Thyme  
  • Dried fenugreek leaves
  • Coconut oil or ghee (1 tsp)
  • Himalayan Pink Salt
  • Ground Black Pepper
  • Turmeric Powder
  • Red Paprika
  • Water

Method

  • Heat a pan and sauté onions & tomatoes with garlic, ginger, thyme and paprika in ghee/ coconut Oil.
  • Add the lentils & spices and stir for 4-5 minutes.
  • Add water, simmer covered for 10-15 mins.
  • Add parsley in the end and serve in a bowl.

Nutritional Info

Calories315.8 kcal
Protein19.5 g
Carbs49.2 g
Dietary Fats6 g
Fiber13 g
Vitamin A418 IU
Iron7.3 mg
Approximate values *

What are Lentils?

Before we discuss the lentil health benefits, for the help of some of our unaware audience, let’s understand what lentils are?

Lentils (lens culinaris) are wholesome seeds of the legume family and come in various colors, including red, green, brown, yellow and black. 

Lentils are a subcategory of legumes. Unlike beans, which are also legumes, lentils are never eaten fresh but always dried right after ripening.

They’re little super-foods that are low in sodium, saturated fat and rich in potassium, folate, fiber, and phytochemicals called polyphenols that have antioxidant activity. ((<https://www.researchgate.net/publication/332326817_Role_of_lentils_Lens_culinaris_L_in_human_health_and_nutrition_a_review>))

As per the National Institutes of Health (NIH), lentils are the best, readily available and economical food sources of potassium. One cup of cooked lentils provides 731mg, which is about 16%of the daily requirement of potassium. ((<https://ods.od.nih.gov/factsheets/Potassium-HealthProfessional/>))

Lentils are an abundant source of protein storage, providing essential and non-essential amino acids to our human body. Therefore, lentils are a good source of protein. For example, a ½ cup serving of cooked lentils in this soup provides about 12 grams of protein. With such high protein content, you are sure to be fueled up all day long.

Lentils also contain slow-digesting resistant starch that delays the absorption of carbohydrates with blood sugar-lowering effects and is a source of pre-biotics that may help gut health and help prevent digestive diseases. ((<https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5713359/>))

Human studies have found that lentils may improve cholesterol levels in people with diabetes and protect against breast cancer in women. ((<https://www.mdpi.com/1422-0067/18/11/2390/htm>)), ((<https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4667261/>))

Health Benefits Of Lentil Soup

Apart from all the lentil health benefits mentioned above, few other exciting elements in the soup that may provide various health benefits are:

Turmeric

With its savory flavor and bright yellow color, turmeric powder dramatically adds to this easy soup recipe. In addition, it has an active compound; curcumin is a potent antioxidant with powerful anti-inflammatory properties.((<https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5664031/>))

It has been shown to support cognitive function, ease bloating and gas caused by indigestion, and help stabilize blood glucose levels. ((<https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3288651/>))

Turmeric is promoted as a dietary supplement for various conditions, including arthritis, digestive disorders, respiratory infections, allergies, liver disease, depression, and many others. ((<https://www.nccih.nih.gov/health/turmeric>))

Dried Fenugreek Leaves

Kasturi methi or dried leaves of the fenugreek plant are herbs with a robust and nutty flavor and used extensively in Indian household kitchens.

Fenugreek seeds and leaves have a long history of medical uses in ayurvedic and chinese medicine. They may benefit in numerous indications, including labor induction, better digestion, diabetes and triglycerides levels. ((<https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/11868855/>))

Red Paprika

Paprika is a bright red ground spice made from peppers that are members of the Capsicum annuum family. It may range from sweet to mild to hot in intensity, and some varieties of Paprika have a smoky flavor. 

Capsaicin is the chemical found in many hot peppers that give the peppers their heat and are associated with some health benefits.

Various animal studies suggest that capsaicin-rich diets may have favorable effects on atherosclerosis, metabolic syndrome, diabetes, obesity, non-alcoholic fatty liver, cardiac hypertrophy, hypertension and stroke risk. ((<https://www.phcogrev.com/article/2017/11/21/104103phrevphrev4816>)), ((<https://openheart.bmj.com/content/2/1/e000262>))

Thyme

Thyme is a Mediterranean herb. The flowers, leaves, and oil are used to treat a range of symptoms and complaints.

The possible health effects of thyme and its constituents, particularly thymol and carvacrol, include antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, respiratory, antibacterial, insecticidal, and possibly antifungal properties.

Moreover, these compounds are classified as Generally Recognized as Safe (GRAS), which means they can be used as an ingredient of many food products. ((<https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/29771598/>)), ((<https://journals.lww.com/nutritiontodayonline/fulltext/2016/01000/thyme__history,_applications,_and_overview_of.10.aspx>))

Moreover, these compounds are classified as Generally Recognized As Safe (GRAS), which means they can be used as an ingredient of many food products.

Sprinkle fresh, versatile thyme leaves on your cooked eggs, poultry, meat, seafood, salads, soups and pasta.

Parsley

Parsley is a widely cultivated flowering herb, and the two types are curly-leaf Parsley and flat-leaf Parsley. 

Parsley leaves are rich in vitamin K, which is an essential nutrient for optimal bone health. A single tablespoon of fresh chopped Parsley used in the recipe for the week provides about 70% of the recommended DV.

Parsley also contains a decent amount of vitamin A, C and antioxidants known as flavonoids that may help inhibit cell damage and lower the risk of certain diseases like cancer, diabetes and CVD. ((<https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/25738871/>)), ((<https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/24374449/>))

Parsley is an all-around, inexpensive flavoring ingredient that can be used fresh or dried in homemade soups, salad dressings, marinades, and seafood recipes. 

So this easy recipe of soup has the following qualities:

  • High in Polyphenols
  • High in protein
  • Good source of many essential vitamins and minerals 
  • Rich in dietary fiber
  • Low in fat

All these factors make it a perfect substitute for rice and pasta and to keep us full and provide us with all the goodness one needs in the diet.

Let us know what you think about this recipe in the comments!

Paneer Panini

I want to confess, and I am an absolute die-hard fan of sandwiches: any kind and every kind of sandwich. As a kid, it used to be our everyday school lunch. Easy to make, with hundreds of variations. 

But in today’s world, it saddens me when I see some people think that they have to avoid bread altogether to lose weight. I know they think it’s because the bread will cause weight gain. 

If one pays attention to what goes into the sandwich, it can be a very healthy meal option.

But really, it comes down to the bread and everything else that goes with it.

Yes, one can enjoy a sandwich for diet and still lose weight. However, if you load up veggies, use healthier bread and carefully select the protein portions.

The recipe for this week in the sandwich category is Paneer Panini, a high protein vegetarian option, and you can pile on as many vegetables as you want to add color and fiber apart from nutrients.

Ingredients

  1. Red onion- 2 tsp finely chopped 
  2. Lettuce- 2 tbsp
  3. Organic canola mayonnaise- 1 tsp
  4. Grated lemon rind- 1 tsp grated
  5. Flax Seeds seeds- 1tsp crushed
  6. Freshly ground black pepper- ¼ tsp
  7. Cheddar cheese- 1 tsp
  8. Grape tomatoes- 2tbsp
  9. Paneer- 100 gms
  10. Oatmeal bread- 2 slices
  11. Olive oil – 1 tsp

Method

  1. Combine the first 7 ingredients in a medium bowl thoroughly.
  2. Place two bread slices on a flat surface; top one bread slice with some cheese mix.
  3. Add a paneer slice to the other bread slice.
  4. Heat a large skillet over medium heat. 
  5. Lightly coat the skillet with cooking spray. Place the sandwich in the pan; top with another heavy skillet.
  6. Cook 3 minutes on each side or until lightly browned (leave skillet on the sandwich as they cook).
  7. Cut the sandwich in half and serve on a platter.

Nutritional Info

Calories574.9 kcal
Protein27.3 g
Carbs 36.1 g
Dietary Fats36.1 g
Fiber3.8 g
Vitamin A744 IU
Calcium5815 mg
Approximate values*

Is Bread Unhealthy?

To answer the lingering question about bread, it mainly provides our bodies with carbohydrates and fiber, and carbohydrates are the primary nutrient in bread and the body’s leading source of fuel for energy. 

There are two types of carbohydrates in foods, simple and complex; Simple carbohydrates are broken down quickly by the body into sugar to be used as energy.

Complex carbohydrates or also known as starches are found in whole-grain bread and other grain-based foods. They are usually a better choice as the body takes a longer time to break them down.

Our body parts such as the kidneys, muscles (including the heart), brain, and nervous system, use carbohydrates to function correctly.

Fiber may reduce the risk for some chronic conditions such as constipation and hemorrhoids and keeps the gut healthy.

It may help prevent cancers like colon cancer and help reduce the risk of heart disease and diabetes.

But we can say that all bread is not suitable for us; eating bread made of highly processed flour with refined carbs stripped of fiber, bran and germ, means eating extra calories with no nutrients.

We can consciously look for healthier bread made from whole grains, sprouted grain, rye, oatmeal and sourdough varieties.

Whole-grain loaves of bread contain fiber and antioxidants such as vitamin E and selenium and iron, magnesium, zinc, and B vitamins.

For people with diabetes, eating complex carbohydrates, such as whole-grain bread can help regulate blood sugar. 

According to the USDA, eating whole grains is associated with a reduced incidence of type 2 diabetes and lower body weight and protection against cardiovascular disease. ((<https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/22642074/>))

You can read more about it here:

https://fabulousbody.com/bread-healthy-or-unhealthy/

The other question we all come across is if we can consume cheese sandwiches for our health-conscious diet. The answer is, yes, if you’re looking to lose weight or build muscle, cottage cheese is among the most beneficial foods you can eat.

Protein Requirement

Protein provides energy and helps our body to function correctly. It’s one of three macro-nutrients that the human body requires, apart from fats and carbohydrates.

Vegetarians may be at risk of having a protein deficiency, so it’s essential to incorporate more protein rich food sources into your diet.

A sedentary adult requires about 0.8 g protein per kg as per RDA, however, that is a basic number which just ensures that you steer clear of malnutrition. ((<https://www.nap.edu/read/10490/chapter/12>))

Protein requirements for active individuals are approximately double that of the RDA—at least 1.2 – 2.0 grams per kilogram of bodyweight, as suggested by numerous studies. ((<https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/26891166>)), ((<https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/20048505>))

You can read more about why we need that much protein here:

https://fabulousbody.com/7-functions-of-protein-in-the-body/

Paneer/Cottage cheese

Paneer or cottage cheese(in the western world) is a curd cheese with a very mild flavor and a smooth texture, high in protein and includes B vitamins, minerals like calcium, selenium, and phosphorus. ((<https://fdc.nal.usda.gov/fdc-app.html#/food-details/173417/nutrients>))

Paneer or cottage cheese may also help promote weight loss. Studies suggest that a diet including cottage cheese and more fruits, vegetables, whole grains may be highly effective for maintaining weight loss. ((<https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/21775530/>))

Paneer Panini is a vegetarian high protein recipe created by Team Fabulous Body. We’ll be glad to hear what you think about it in the comments section below!

Tomato & Basil Soup

I am very passionate about my comfort food, a bowl of soup that I make every day, and I thought of sharing it with you all. The soup recipe for the week is Tomato & Basil soup.

Ingredients

  • 3-4 Fresh Medium Tomatoes, chopped
  • 3-4 Fresh Basil Leaves
  • 1 Tbsp Heavy Cream
  • Himalayan Pink Salt, Ground Black Pepper, All Spice

Method

  • In a large saucepan, combine the tomatoes, water, Salt & all spice
  • Bring to a boil, and cook for 15-20 minutes on medium heat
  • Remove from heat, and stir in the basil
  • Puree the soup
  • Cook for 5-6 minutes
  • Add cream for garnish

Nutritional Info

Calories130.5 kcal
Protein4.6 g
Carbs14.6 g
Dietary Fats5.9 g
Fiber3.1 g
Vitamin A2389 IU
Vitamin C101.3 mg
Approximate values*

Tomato & Basil Soup is a healthy classic soup that’s simple to make from scratch and full of flavor!

It is an incredible snack recipe, simple to make, with fresh ingredients resulting in excellent flavor and textured meal.

It can be made up to 3-5 days in advance and refrigerated or frozen up to 2-3 months, however, we recommend that you make it fresh and consume it on the same day or the next at best.

Homemade soup is always better than an over-the-counter ready-made ones or the ones available in most restaurants.

This easy recipe soup is packed with water to help you stay hydrated, and the fiber makes you feel full.

Research shows that consuming soup may provide the same satiety level as any higher calorie dish, and the bulk of the soup helps fill us up, so we eat less. This fact may promote healthy weight management and prevent obesity. ((<https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/24382211/>))

Let’s look at the health benefits of tomatoes and basil:

Health Benefits Of Tomato

Tomatoes are an excellent source of vitamin C, vitamin E, and other antioxidants, including alpha-lipoic acid, lycopene, choline, folic acid, beta-carotene, carotenoids, and lutein, with their unique health benefits like:

Healthy skin

The beta-carotene and lycopene found in tomatoes helps protect the skin against damage and makes the skin less sensitive to UV damage. ((<https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/16465309/>))

Strong bones

The vitamin K, calcium and lycopene in tomatoes are good for strengthening and repairing bones and improving bone mass. ((<https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7582596/>))

Fights cancer

Lycopene helps prevent several cancers, and the antioxidants in tomatoes can reduce cell damage. ((<https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/10050865/>))

Regulates blood sugar

Tomatoes contain phytochemicals and minerals, which help your blood sugar stay in balance and helps reduce the risk of diabetes. ((<https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/32243013/>))

Improves vision

Vitamin A and C found in tomatoes may improve vision, prevent night blindness and may also help reduce the possibility of macular degeneration. ((<https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3693724/>))

Prevents heart disease

The potassium and vitamin B in tomatoes help lower blood pressure and cholesterol levels, which might assist in the prevention of strokes, heart attacks and other heart-related problems. ((<https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/23045517/>))

Laxative

Tomatoes are often described as a laxative fruit as they have high water, fiber, and naringenin (a natural flavonoid) content. ((<https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5752176/>))

You can read more in the article below to know all about tomatoes:

https://fabulousbody.com/tomatoes-nutrition-facts-health-benefits-of-tomatoes/

Health Benefits of Basil

Do you know that basil leaves have benefits for health? Most of us use it for flavor and garnishing only.

So do not get surprised by the information below. One tablespoon of fresh basil weighing around 2.6 g provides the following nutrients:

  • Calcium- 4.6mg
  • Vitamin A- 6.9 mcg
  • Beta carotene- 81.7mcg
  • Beta cryptoxanthin- 1.2mcg
  • Lutein and zeaxanthin- 147mcg
  • Vitamin K- 10.8mcg

Data based on : https://fdc.nal.usda.gov/fdc-app.html#/food-details/172232/nutrients

Basil is an herb from the mint family. It adds flavor to meals and may provide health benefits in the diet, such as herbal medicine and essential oil.

It contains antioxidants that fight against the virus and bacterial infections. It is suitable for stress, heartburn and also acts as an aphrodisiac.

Its leaves have a lot of uses, such as relieving stomach spasms, warts and head colds. It also treats kidney conditions, intestinal gas and loss of appetite.

However, please do not consider this a medicinal advice and consult your physician for any symptoms.

So this humble dish proves that by simply tossing the two main ingredients together and allowing them to simmer, one can have a fresh, healthy and delicious creamy soup in under 30 minutes.

Let us know what you think of it in the comments section below!

Chicken Barbecue Salad

Every night I face a difficult challenge. That is how to make an easy chicken dinner recipe. One that can be made with fewer ingredients that fulfill the nutrition criteria, and so delicious that no one can say no to it.

Barbecue Chicken Salad is an option that fits the criteria, loaded with all good ingredients and a perfect high protein meal.

It is fresh, filling, creamy, tangy, and just downright delicious. It can be prepared, made ahead, and stored as long as the ingredients are stored separately.

Team Fabulous Body’s recipe for the week ,barbecue chicken salad is elementary, healthy and a wholesome meal in itself.

Ingredients

  • Chicken Breast without bone- 150 g/one cup
  • Barbecue sauce-  ¼ cup
  • Onion- One small red onion/ 70 g 
  • Cucumber- 140 g /one cup
  • Cherry Tomato- 100 g/half cup
  • Lettuce- 50 g/one cup
  • Egg Mayonnaise- 2  Teaspoons
  • Extra Virgin Olive Oil- 1 Teaspoon
  • Himalayan Pink Salt- ¼ Teaspoons
  • Ground Black Pepper-¼  Teaspoons
  • Oregano seasoning

Recipe

  • Marinate the chicken overnight with Salt & BBQ sauce.
  • Grill or BBQ next day
  • Cut all vegetables in desired shape
  • Mix the Olive oil with Mayo and all seasonings
  • Toss the Chicken strips and Veggies in the mix
  • Top with Oregano Seasoning


Nutritional Info

Calories488.8 kcal
Protein52
Carbs21 g
Dietary Fats21.8 g
Fiber6.2 g
Vitamin A2333 IU
Phosphorus606.4mg
Vitamin K83.6 µg
Approximate values

Is Chicken Breast A Good Source Of Protein

Protein is the building block of the human body. It plays a crucial role in our growth and development. ((<https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6566799/>))

A protein source that provides all nine amino acids is called a complete protein, or high-quality protein. Animal-based protein sources, such as meats, eggs, fish, etc., are complete protein sources.

Protein in 100g chicken breast is more when you compare it with a whole chicken. A breast portion is mostly protein, whereas there is a lot of fat in other parts of the chicken, like thighs and wings.

https://fabulousbody.com/7-functions-of-protein-in-the-body/

If we are eating salad as a meal, adding a source of lean protein, such as chicken, fish, or egg which will take care of daily requirements of all essential macro nutrients. 

Vegetables

Vegetables and fruits are an essential part of a healthy diet, and variety is as important as quantity. Essentially the few reasons to include vegetables in our diet are:

 Vegetables are a great source of vitamins, minerals and antioxidants that provide important health benefits to our body.

Including them in the daily diet adds a variety of colors, flavors and textures.

They’re low-calorie and low-fat and hence help in weight management.

Protect against the risk of cancer, heart disease, type 2 diabetes and may help improve skin and eye health. ((<https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/full/10.1002/ijc.22788>)), ((<https://academic.oup.com/ajcn/article/99/2/328/4571480?login=true>)), ((<https://www.nature.com/articles/1002212>))

Nutritious in every form available, be it fresh, frozen, canned, or dried. Convenient, quick and easy to eat and cook.

Most of the fruits and vegetables are high in dietary fiber. Fiber that is soluble and insoluble is food for our gut bacteria and adds more bulk to our stool. Fiber helps regulate the body’s use of sugars, helping to keep hunger and blood sugar in check. ((<https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3649719/>))

https://fabulousbody.com/what-is-fiber-health-benefits-food-sources-and-daily-requirements/

But I bet if you understand why it’s so important to increase the  intake of vegetables, we all  might make more of an effort.

Lettuce

Lettuce is the most common leafy vegetable. It is not only easily grown and a available green but also famous for giving salads its base.

Most salad greens including lettuce contain essential dietary nutrients, such as vitamins, minerals, and even water..

Cucumber

Cucumber is very high in water content, essential electrolytes and very low in calories. It has potential anti-diabetic, lipid-lowering and antioxidant activity. 

Cucumber may have a cleansing action within the body by removing accumulated old waste materials and chemical toxins. ((<https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/23098877/>))

Tomatoes

Tomatoes are considered an excellent source of vitamin C, vitamin E and other antioxidants, including alpha-lipoic acid, lycopene, choline, folic acid, beta-carotene, and lutein. All these help in increasing our quality of health. ((<https://academic.oup.com/jnci/article/99/14/1074/937795?login=true>))

The fiber, high water content and naringenin(a natural flavonoid) are the reason for the  laxative behavior of tomatoes.

We at Fabulous body academy recommend healthy salads packed with leafy greens, lean protein, healthy fats, fiber and nutrients to help you stay fit and full.

We hope this recipe for the week will help you in attaining your health and physical fitness goals.