October 15, 2012

'Slow Food': How it Can Help Your Health

There is a lot of hype (at least in Denver!) in regards to healthy, local, organic food.  The hype seems to be truer and truer as we find that harsh chemicals may cause early puberty; that the fresher the food, the better and more available the nutrients; that gas-guzzling trucks and freezer burn does not win over our friendly farms' dedication to growing heirloom varieties.

There are many facets to the term 'slow food', but I like to think that this idea can benefit your health as well as others and your environment.  If you want more info on the organization, click here.  My thoughts do not follow all of their tenants, although they are awesome!  Here is my list of 'pros' to the concept:

1.  No more fast food!  It seems kind of obvious, but the definition of 'slow food' cannot ever possibly include fast food.  It can't!  Fast food is so detrimental to your health.  I just don't need to go there.  Don't eat it.

2.  Farming is really cool and not just what your grandpa did.  Farming is a lost art that so many people can be a part of (maybe in a slightly smaller scale...).  My 'mini mini' farm has helped put a dent in my grocery bill and made me feel like I had to eat plenty more veggies because it was RIGHT THERE!  Sure, there was some hard labor and dedicated time spent towards farming, but it was SO worth it!  It gave me a hobby to be outdoors and learn more about plant life.  And it wasn't even as much as I needed to know to grow even a few vegetables!  Try it :)  Even extra herbs help!

3.  Slow down your day.  Eating the 'slow' way makes you have to prepare and plan for a day of food.  Hopefully this will involve others, but even if it doesn't, getting in touch with cooking and finding creative recipes to use that local produce is fun.  Fresh foods also tend to make delicious food, in which you should slow down the chewing and enjoying process--which happens to be a healthy habit (that I definitely have to work on!  I'm a wolf!).

Hopefully some point in here will help encourage you to slow down.  It starts with the first point: no fast food!

Debrief on the day:

I had the afternoon free, and it turned out to be gorgeous, so I headed up Mt. Falcon.  I'm obsessed!
Thankfully, I started the day with a mug muffin and ate 'light' and healthy the rest of the morning: two hard-boiled eggs and a nut/fruit bar (waking up at four makes me extra hungry!).  So, I knew this trip up was already better than the last!  Time: 41:30 up, 26:30 down!

 Snowy peaks in the distance...

Made it to the top! How gorgeous is this day? Mid-October and in a tank!

A view of Red Rocks Amphitheater from the trail.

After my run, I was ravenous.  I inhaled some sweet potato fries that I made yesterday with some almond butter.  De-licious!

Dinner was a new recipe from this blog.  I had cod in the freezer and am HORRIBLE at cooking fish.  But this turned out great!

White Fish 'en Papillote'

1 fish fillet
1/4 of an onion, cut in rings)
any combo of sliced fruit (lemon, lime, orange)
spice/herbs (cilantro, garlic, parsley, ginger, rosemary, thyme, dill)
salt and pepper (after baked, to taste)
10-12 inch piece of parchment paper

Preheat the oven to 375.  Place the fish on top of onion, fruit, and herbs and wrap it up so that it steams the fish.  When the oven is ready, place parchment on a pan and put in the oven for 10-15 minutes.  Mine took 15+ a little, but I don't think it was fully thawed.

Such an easy and tasty dish: quick prep and cleanup.  Fish is high in protein and low in fat and has other great nutrients like B vitamins and iodine--good for you!  Enjoy!

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