Eating food that is ‘in season’ is sensible. The food is more likely to have been grown locally and therefore carries less of a ‘carbon footprint’ in its journey from the field or farm to your fork. For the ethical consumer seasonal eating is often associated with a fairer price for both growers and is considerably cheaper for the consumer as you avoid paying a premium for food that has travelled a long way. Most importantly seasonal food is fresher and so tends to be tastier and is certainly more nutritious.
On your shopping list during May and June, try to look out for:
- Asparagus – gorge while you can as the season is short and try to avoid imported asparagus. Look for freshly – cut, firm spears with tight buds. You could try roasting until crispy on the BBQ!
- Sorrel – a gift for the cook, with its refreshing acidity. Toss small leaves into Spring salads, wilt into risottos or include in a sauce to complement fish.
- Artichokes – require a bit more time in preparation but worth it when you pull off a succulent leaf and dip it in hollandaise or vinagrette. Artichokes are high in vitamin C and have significant liver protecting and regenerating effects.
- Strawberries – a key component of the typical British summer, strawberries are best enjoyed with a drizzle of cream or creme fraiche. Their vibrant red colour is down to the flavanoids – valuable antioxidants. Why not try picking your own at certain sites across the UK.
- Cherries – cherry orchards used to liven up our landscape; now we import nearly 95% of the fruit that we eat. Support the remaining growers – farmers markets are your best bet and look out for the darker shades as they have a higher concentration of flavonoids.
- Gooseberries – a quintessential British crop but rarely in the supermarkets. Preserve as a relish, simmer for a sauce or add to a classic sponge pudding. Look out for red and dessert varieties, sweet enough to be eaten out of your hand.
Also in season are early carrots, courgettes, fennel, samphire, broad beans, damsons, elderflower, peas and watercress.
Jo offers one to one nutrition therapy – Breathe Nutrition therapy
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I am often asked questions by both clients and friends regarding the validity of nutritional information picked up through the media, here say etc. Although nutritional advice is abundant, sadly so are the myths and this can lead to confusion. The most recently discussed issue has been that of eggs and the question posed by a friend was this: ‘ Aren’t eggs bad for you?’ Here I hope to provide an explanation…..
Eggs are an excellent source of Vitamin K and a very good source of all the B Vitamins, including biotin, thiamine and Vitamin B12. One egg contains around 78 calories, 6.3g of protein and 1.6g of saturated fat. Some eggs now contain omega-3 fatty acids (depends on what the chickens have been fed). Eggs are regarded a ‘complete’ source of protein as they contain all 8 essential amino acids (the ones we cannot synthesise in our bodies and must obtain from our diet).
For years eggs have been considered more of a health risk than a healthy food. They were tarred with the ‘high cholesterol’ brush. But it turns out the cholesterol content for which they have been vilified is much lower than it was 10 years ago – a whole 13% lower according to a US Government survey. This reduction has be attributed to the changes in hen feed since the BSE crisis in the Nineties. British research shows that a medium egg contains about 100mg of cholesterol, a third of the 300mg recommended daily limit. Also it is saturated fat in the diet, not dietary cholesterol that influences blood cholesterol levels the most. In a study published by The Journal of the American Medical Association it was shown that people who reported eating four eggs per week had a significantly lower mean serum cholesterol concentration that those who reported eating one egg per week.
Not only that but eggs contain more Vitamin D than they did ten years ago, which helps to protect bones, preventing osteoporosis and rickets. And they are filling too. A recent study by Surrey University found that eating one or two eggs for breakfast could help with weight loss as the high protein content makes us feel fuller for longer. Eggs should be included as part of a varied and balanced diet. Opt for the free-range variety and ensure they are cooked thoroughly to minimise risk of Salmonella.
Quick serving idea: For a healthy southwestern-influenced breakfast, add 1-2 diced jalapeño peppers (removed seeds and pith) to 4 scrambled eggs. Divide into two portions and serve each with 1/2 cup black beans and 2 steamed tortillas. Top with a small dollop of low-fat, organic sour cream and 1-2 tablespoons chopped fresh coriander.
For further advice or Nutritional Therapy consultations at Breathe click here
Madeleine, Charlotte, Erika and Andy offer Life coaching, Positive Psychology Coaching, Personality testing and Hypnotherapy – Breathe Coaching
In the workplace we run corporate wellbeing events, emotional intelligence coaching and stress management – Breathe Psychology at Work
Keith and Andy provide Tai Chi, Yoga and Meditation courses – Breathe Yoga & Tai Chi
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