e have talked a lot about the fact that most of us get too much of the wrong kind of fats in our diets, with the tragic consequences of very destructive disease processes like heart disease and type II diabetes.  Here we want to highlight one class of foods that bring us healthy oils that will aid our bodies in their work of living:

 Nuts and seeds are nature’s storehouse of delicious flavours as they are naturally high in oils, along with important vitamins and minerals.  Many are good raw, and most are good roasted.  Nuts and seeds can be utilized as finger foods by themselves, blended into nut butters, or added to prepared foods in a variety of ways.

One of the big things we hear much about in the nutrition of children, and women as they age, is calcium.  One of the best sources of calcium is sesame seed.  This inexpensive seed can be used in many ways from adding to breads and disserts, to grinding into butter, called tahini.  There are a number of places in Waterford that carry this product, such as Full of Beans, Holland & Barrett and Spice World.  This can be used in baking, or eaten on bread.  I enjoy tahini mixed with date syrup on toast, it’s so good you’d think it must be bad for you!

Sunflower seeds are another inexpensive seed that tastes good.  They are great lightly roasted and eaten by themselves, added as a garnish to salads, or baked into bread.  Using several seeds, like flax seed (linseed), sesame seed and sunflower seed in bread makes a delicious and nutritious product.  Pumpkin seeds are also good lightly roasted as a snack or part of a meal.  There is nothing like the crunchy texture of roasted nuts and seeds, besides being good for you, they are fun to eat!  Mixing nuts, seeds and dried fruit makes a delightful sweet treat, much healthier than the sugar based sweets that are generally given the children.  I enjoy stuffing dried dates with roasted almonds, walnuts, or Brazil nuts.  Roasted almonds mixed with raisins makes a nutritious energy boost that I like to carry along when I’m travelling.

Almonds, walnuts, Brazil nuts, hazel nuts—there are a number of different shapes, tastes and textures to choose from. Cashews, boiled and then blended with water and seasonings, make a very rich sauce or gravy which is a good replacement for cream, and cashew butter is very good on toast. But remember, fat has twice as many calories per gram as either carbohydrate or protein, so moderation is the key unless you’re trying to gain weight!  Also, because nuts and seeds are whole foods, you’re getting many high quality vitamins, especially the ‘B’ vitamins, along with minerals and other plant based goodness that are grown into the foods as they come from nature. 

Where to purchase natural foods in Waterford>> 

 

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