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A better way to diet.


If man could live by bread alone, he'd be better off and probably slimmer. Contrary to conventional dieting lore, grains and other complex-carbohydrates are part of nature's recipe for losing weight. Most nutritionists now recommend that rather than shedding bread, rice, and pasta at a diet's outset, dieters should increase their consumption of carbohydrates and reduce their dependence on meats and other fatty foods.

Gram for gram, carbohydrates have only half the calories of fat. In addition, the fiber in many grain dishes gives a feeling of fullness that further inhibits calorie consumption.

The hitch is that you can't lose weight simply by filling up on bread and potatoes. Energy output must exceed energy input--and that requires exercise. Exercise burns up excess calories that would otherwise turn to fat. Even more important, it builds lean muscle tissue, whose cells burn more calories for simple maintenance than fat cells do. In the long run, people who exercise and increase their percentage of muscle tissue burn more calories even sitting still.

Glycogen, our main source of body energy, comes primarily from carbohydrates. Carbohydrates may also help produce serotonin, a neurotransmitter whose calming effect plays a role in sleep. When dieters who avoid carbohydrates feel on edge, a reduced level of serotonin may be partly responsible.

If you contemplate losing weight, don't leap into the first attractive quickie program that comes along. Instead, step comfortably into a life-time plan of physical activity and increased carbohydrates, especially grains. A good weight-loss program need not be strict either in the kinds of food consumed or in exercise performed. The following receips show how good a high-grain diet can be. For quickness and convenience, they can be made in the microwave, except for Apple Honey Griddle Cakes, which should be prepared in a pan or a griddle.

Apple Honey Griddle Cakes

(Makes 24 cakes) 3 large eggs 2 cups skim milk 1/4 cup cooking oil 1/4 cup honey 2-1/2 cups whole-wheat fluor 5 teaspoons baking powder 1 teaspoon cinnamon 1 teaspoon nutmeg 1/4 teaspoon salt 1 cut unsweetened applesauce

Beat eggs until well combined. Beat in milk, oil, and honey. Blend in flour, baking powder, cinnamon, nutmeg, and salt. Heat griddle and lightly grease. Pour batter onto hot griddle and cook until browned. Flip cakes and cook underside until golden brown. Spread each pancake with applesauce and roll up with sauce in center. Serve warm.

Shrimp and Cracked Wheat Salad

(Makes 4 servings) 1 cup cracked wheat 1/2 cup chicken stock 3 tablespoons vinegar 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard 3/4 teaspoon salt, if desired 1 clove garlic, minced 1/4 teaspoon pepper 1/2 pound cleaned, peeled shrimp 1-1/2 cups broccoli pieces 1/3 cup sliced real radishes 1/4 cup green onion

Combine cracked wheat, chicken stock, vinegar, mustard, salt, garlic, and pepper in 2-quart casserole. Microwave at High (100%) 5-7 minutes or until most of stock is absorbed. Add shrimp and broccoli. Microwave at High 5-6 minutes or until shrimp are opaque. Stir in radishes and green onion.

Wild Rice and Woodland Mushrooms

(Makes 6 servings) 1 cup wild rice 1/2 cup brown rice 3-1/2 cups water 1 ounce dried mushrooms or tree ears 3 shallots, thinly sliced 3 green onions, sliced 1/2 pound sliced, fresh mushrooms 2 tablespoons margarine 3/4 teaspoon salt, if desired 1/4 teaspoon pepper 1/3 cup chicken stock

Microwave wild rice, brown rice, and water at High (100%) in 2-quart casserole 6-8 minutes or until boiling; reduce to Medium (50%) and cook 35-40 minutes or until rice is tender; set aside. Soak dried mushrooms in hot water for 30 minutes or until tender. Cut mushrooms into pieces if very large. Combines shallots, onions, fresh mushrooms, and margarine in small bowl. Microwave at High 3-4 minutes or until mushrooms are tender; stir once. Add rehydrated mushrooms, shallot mixutre, salt, pepper, and chicken stock to rice; toss gently until well-mixed.

Linguini with Fresh Tuna

(Makes 4 servings) 3 tablespoons olive oil 1/2 cup chopped sweet onion 1/2 pound fresh tuna, cut into 1" pieces 6 small tomato slices 2 tablespoons fresh minced basil 2 teaspoons fresh garlic 1/2 teaspoon salt, if desired 1/4 teaspoon white pepper 1/4 pound cooked linguini 2 tablespoons capers

Combine olive oil and onion in 1-quart casserole. Microwave at High (100%) 1-2 minutes or until onion is tender. Add tuna, tomato, basil, garlic, salt, and pepper. Microwave at High 3-4 minutes or until tuna flakes easily with fork; stir gently once during cooking. Spoon over linguini and garnish each serving with capers.

New Potatoes with Fresh Asparagus

(Makes 6 servings) 1 pound fresh asparagus 10 tiny new potatoes 2 tablespoons water 1/4 cup nonfat yogurt 1/4 cup mayonnaise or salad dressing 1/2 teaspoon salt, if desired 1/4 teaspoon pepper 1/2 cub bran-cereal crumbs 1 tablespoon margarine 1/4 teaspoon paprika

Remove tough ends of asparagus stalks and break into 1" pieces; set aside. Remove a ring of peel around center of each potato. Combine potatoes and water in 1-quart casserole; cover. Microwave at High (100%) 5 minutes. Add asparagus; cover. Microwave at High 4-5 minutes or until tender-crisp; drain. Combine yogurt, mayonnaise or salad dressing, salt, and pepper. Pour mixture over vegetables. Combine cereal crumbs, margarine, and paprika in small dish. Microwave at High 1-2 minutes; stir once. Sprinkle crumbs over begetables. Microwave at High 2-3 minutes or until heated through.
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Copyright 1988 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

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Title Annotation:recipes for grain dishes
Author:Nyenhuis, Jacquelyn
Publication:Saturday Evening Post
Date:Mar 1, 1988
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