The New Mayo Clinic Cookbook

October 29, 2013 at 2:21 pm

CookbookHealthy eating doesn’t have fall into a lifetime of boring, flavorless foods.  The New Mayo Clinic Cookbook, Second Edition offers recipes that create dishes rich in flavor with nutritious ingredients that may actually lower your risk of developing many diseases, from heart disease to cancer.

The New Mayo Clinic Cookbook provides 50 new recipes based on the Mayo Clinic Healthy Weight Pyramid principles. While the pyramid was designed as a weight control tool, it also showcases eating wisely for better health.

All the recipes offer great-tasting meals that are low in “energy density”  providing satisfying meals low in calories. From simple to fancy, familiar to adventurous, the 200 dishes demonstrate that flavor comes first. The philosophy of the cookbook reflects saying yes to a variety of foods using a sustainable pattern of healthy eating. The recipes are not complicated or expensive and are built around using seasonable, colorful produce.

The Mayo Clinic Healthy Weight Pyramid represents six food groups. The wide base encourages ample servings of vegetables and fruits. The next level includes plenty of high-fiber carbohydrates, with the next levels adding smaller portions of lean protein, low-fat dairy and healthy fats. Top off the pyramid by going easy on sweets and engaging in daily physical activity.

Goals for servings follow the healthy weight principle of eating only as much food as your body can burn in a day: 1,600 to 2,800 calories for most adults. Each recipe shows exactly how a portion of a dish moves you toward reaching your servings goal. A second chart provides a standard nutritional analysis that includes calories and other important nutrients, such as protein, carbohydrates, total fat, sodium, cholesterol, and fiber.

Serving sizes are described for each pyramid level. For example, a vegetable serving is about 25 calories – about two oz. of leafy greens, fruit serving is 60 calories, carbohydrate serving is about 70 calories, protein at 110 calories, and fat at about 45 calories. The Pyramid has no limit on daily servings of fresh and frozen vegetables and fruits.  Dried fruits and fruit juices are the exception as they are higher in calories than the fresh fruits from which they are made.

The New Mayo Clinic Cookbook offers tips to help you make a few simple changes to make a big difference in the nutritional profile of your daily meals. For example, add at least one fruit serving at each meal and as a snack. Include at least two servings of vegetables at lunch and at dinner. Serve fish as a main course at least twice a week. Replace high-calories sweetened beverages with water, iced tea, or unsweetened fruit juices.

Menu planning ranges from Flavors of Italy, Asian Sampler, Taste of the Mediterranean, to Middle Eastern Flavors or an Entertaining Evening. A Wintry Weekend Supper suggests beef stew with fennel and shallots, baby beets and carrots with dill, two-potato gratin, and baked apples with cherries and almonds.

Recipes tantalize with creations such as Fresh Spring Rolls with Shrimp, Almond and Apricot Biscotti, Spicy Beef Kabobs, Orange Sesame Snow Peas, Strawberry-Mango Salsa, Gingery Chicken Noodle Soup, and Peach-Glazed Salmon with Raspberries.

The Glossary describes the ingredients which can be found in most well-stocked supermarkets and natural-foods stores. Terms for preparing the recipes are also included. For example, julienne is a culinary term for vegetables cut evenly into matchstick-shaped strips. Braising meats refers to browning meats and vegetables in a bit of oil, then simmering them slowly with minimal liquid.

The New Mayo Clinic Cookbook helps you discover a new philosophy of cooking and eating healthy, along with practical insights on the ingredients themselves. As this philosophy suggests, eating well can be as simple as helping yourself.

Debbie L. Feuhrer, LPCC
Coordinator/Counselor-Mind Body Medicine

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