Increasingly, I hear conversations that go something like this:
Fred: I don’t eat carbs any more — they make me feel so bloated.
Ginger: I know! I have a kale smoothie every morning; it’s so much better than all those carbs.
Fred: Oh, that sounds good. I had this great kale salad for lunch yesterday — I feel so much better when I don’t have carbs at lunch.
Just so we’re all clear on this . . . KALE IS A CARBOHYDRATE! There are three categories of macronutrients that we humans consume: protein, fats and carbohydrates. Most food has a complement of these nutrients, as well as water, fiber and splatterings of micronutrients (vitamins and minerals and such). Kale is no exception — there are small amounts of protein and some trace fatty acids in kale, plus vitamins and minerals, but it is primarily a carbohydrate. In fact, most fruits and vegetables are primarily carbohydrates. If you are eating lettuce and radishes, you are eating carbs. If you are eating blueberries and Brussels sprouts (not together, I hope), you are eating carbohydrates. Swiss chard, collards and spinach? All carbs. Have I made my point? I hope so, and I hope that you will continue to eat a range of these wonderfully healthy plant-based foods. Read more
Image by Leslie Kuenne
The grumpy adolescent boy looked at the kale and quinoa on his plate and then stared me down with indignant brown eyes. Mum, you’re going to have to choose between your cute little vegetables and me. I’m a growing teenage boy and I NEED MEAT.
My own offspring was reading me the Riot Act. Never mind that I had been preaching the gospel of less meat, more lentils, less meat, more greens, less meat, more carrots, kohlrabi and cabbage. Possibly because of all my preaching (he is a teenager after all) this progeny was begging for a steak, a hamburger, meatballs, OMG, Mum, SOMETHING with meat in it! Since this is a kid who will happily munch on fennel, endive and sushi, I figured he wasn’t being finicky. I put it down to a growth spurt and gave him some beef. Read more
Quinoa is often referred to as a grain, but in fact, it is a seed. Some compare it to couscous, but I think it is lighter and more flavorful. Favored by the Incas, quinoa cooks up quickly, is high in protein and delicious. Quinoa (pronounced KEEN-wah) has recently made the leap from the health food store to the grocery store with good reason. Vegetarians love it because of the protein content; I love it because it is yummy and cooks in about 10 minutes.