Stacy Beeson is our registered dietitian with the Integrative Medicine Center. She practices functional nutrition which focuses on how whole foods and key nutrients help regulate health and the process of healing. Stacy has been a dietitian for over 16 years.
ADOPT THE SLOW FOOD MOVEMENT FOR THE SUMMER
Summer is in full swing! This can mean more family dinners on the patio, increased neighborhood gatherings and fresh garden pickings. Another food idea to add to your summer routine is the slow food movement which means slowing down everything having to do with food and eating.
Officially, the slow food movement is a grassroots organization founded in Italy in 1986 and now has spread worldwide. It strives to preserve regional foods, encourages local food production and consumption, and less globalization of food. In the past few decades too much emphasis has been placed on “fast” food. Not just fast food establishments but a “fast” food system that requires minimal waiting, minimal cooking and minimal digesting. The fast food system covers everything from flashy billboards reminding us of $1.00 menus to new food products that handily fit into the car cup holders. These foods are almost an insult to our natural food supply. They offer negligible nutrients and are usually consumed in a hurry while doing something else. The slow food movement is the opposite of the fast food system.
It is time for the slow food movement. The slow food movement involves choosing food that takes time to chew, digest, is fresh, whole and has a short field to plate journey.
Below are 3 ways to adopt the slow food movement this summer:
- Get cooking and include your kids: Start with a kid-friendly stir-fry recipe.
Chicken and Broccoli Stir-Fry
2 teaspoons + 1 tablespoon canola oil
1 pound chicken breasts, patted dry and sliced thin
2 cups shredded carrots
3 cups broccoli florets
1 orange or red bell pepper, seeded, stemmed and sliced thin
1 cup low-sodium vegetable broth
2 tablespoons low-sodium soy sauce
1 tablespoon minced, peeled ginger, if don’t have fresh, use powder ginger
2 teaspoons honey
1 tablespoon corn starch, if don’t have corn starch, use flour
3 tablespoons rice vinegar
- Set a non-stick wok, cast-iron or deep-sided pan over medium-high heat. Add 1 teaspoon of the oil. Once hot, add half of the chicken. Cook, stirring frequently until no longer pink, about 5 minutes. Remove chicken from the pan and keep warm. Add another teaspoon of oil and cook remaining chicken. Remove from the pan and combine with other cooked chicken and keep warm.
- Add the remaining oil to the pan. Add the carrots, broccoli and red bell pepper and cook until vegetables are slightly softened, but still crunchy, about 3-4 minutes. Whisk together the vegetable broth, soy sauce, ginger, honey, corn starch and vinegar; add to the pan and bring to boil, cooking until thickened, about 1 minute.
- Add the cooked chicken back to the pan and cook an additional 1-2 minutes. (Note: Chicken is done when internal temperature reaches 165°F.) Season with salt to taste.
- To serve, put atop your favorite cooked grain (brown rice, quinoa) with thinly sliced scallions or toasted sesame seeds. org
- Buy local – These days, each town has its own Farmers Market and usually is available twice a week. Seek out local offerings in regular grocery stores too.
- Bring lunch to work: Rotate these three lunches on a weekly basis and fill in the gaps with leftovers.
Tuna Wrap: 3 oz tuna canned in water, solid white Albacore + 2 T plain, nonfat Greek yogurt + 2T avocado + ground black pepper + chopped onion + lettuce stacked + 1 cup baby carrots + 1 whole wheat tortilla
Entrée Salad: 3 oz lean protein (chicken, turkey, fish or ½ c beans) + 3 cups fresh greens + 1/2 c chopped veggies + ¼ c cooked grain (brown rice, quinoa) + 1 T chopped nuts + 1 heaping T Lighthouse brand salad dressing
Cold Mix-n-Match: 1 hard-boiled egg + 1 disc Mini Baby Bel Light cheese +1 small apple + 1 cup sliced veggies + 4 T hummus