Mission: Nutrition – Eating Well as You Age (Part 1)

Everyone knows the importance of staying healthy and eating well. But did you know that as we age our body requires more and different nutrients to help stave off certain age related illnesses and maladys?

 

A full and balanced diet can promote mental acuteness, help fight age related disease, help you recuperate faster from injury or surgery, and also help you to better manage any current health issues you might be facing.

 

This is the first in a series of informational articles that  will provide insight into the benefits of a healthy diet in relation to age. We will address some of the most common health issues faced by seniors, and the nutrient rich foods will help you  maintain a healthy lifestyle. The recipes listed incorporate a wide variety of ethnic cuisines that use different types of herbs and spices, because who says healthy eating has to be boring! As always please be sure to consult your doctor or healthcare provider for any extreme diet changes.

 

Anemia

 

Anemia is a common blood disorder that can occur in older adults most frequently due to an iron deficiency or chronic illness. Some common symptoms are fatigue, weakness, shortness of breath and feeling cold. Add foods rich in Vitamin B12, folic acid, Vitamin C, and Iron to your anemia fighting arsenal.

 

Spinach-

Spinach is a popular leafy green that can help prevent anemia. It’s a robust source of calcium, Vitamins A, B9, E and C, iron, fiber and beta carotene, and will contribute significantly to your overall health and well being. Yes, Popeye was right!

 

Red Meat-

There is an abundance of Iron in lamb, beef and other red meats. It contains heme-iron which is easily absorbed by the body. It’s also a great source of Vitamin B12.

 

Tomatoes-

Vitamin C is the main ingredient in tomatoes along with lycopene. Vitamin C helps the body absorb Iron easier. These delectable fruits are also rich in beta carotene and Vitamins E which will also improve your hair and skin!

 

For an exciting taste adventure using these anemia fighting ingredients, try Lamb Saag.

This delicious curry from the northwest region of India can be made with beef or lamb. Turmeric, the main component of most yellow curry powders, has also been found to help prevent certain cancers and  Alzheimer’s disease.

 

Lamb Saag (Saag Gosht)lamb saag

 

Ingredients:

 

  • 1 green chile pepper
  • 3 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 1 thumb sized piece of fresh ginger, grated
  • 3 tablespoons oil
  • 1 lb boneless lamb, cubed
  • 1 teaspoon fenugreek seeds
  • 1⁄2 teaspoon cumin seed
  • 1 teaspoon black mustard seeds
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 6 cardamom pods
  • 2 onions, chopped
  • 2 teaspoons ground turmeric
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon ground coriander
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 2 cups beef stock
  • 1 bunch spinach, de-stalked and finely shredded
  • 1⁄2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon fresh coriander, chopped
  • 1⁄3 cup plain yogurt

 

Directions:

 

  1. Remove seeds and white membrane from the chile pepper and chop finely.
  2. Set aside with garlic and ginger.
  3. Heat 2 Tbsp oil in frying pan and brown the lamb in batches, drain on paper towel.
  4. In a dry frying pan combine fenugreek, cumin, mustard, cinnamon and cardamon.
  5. Cook for 1 minute or until seeds start to pop.
  6. Set aside. Heat remaining oil and cook onion until softened, 3-4 minutes, then add roasted spices.
  7. Add garlic, ginger, chile, turmeric, cumin, chili powder, coriander and bay leaves to onion.
  8. Cook for 1 minute, then add lamb and stock.
  9. Bring to boil then reduce heat to low and cook, covered for 1 1/4 hours.
  10. Stirring occasionally.
  11. Add spinach and salt, cook for 5 more minutes or until spinach is wilted.
  12. Stir in coriander and yogurt, discard cinnamon stick and bay leaves and serve!

Eating for your health can fun as well as delicious. Be sure to follow us for the next installment of Mission: Nutrition- Eating Well as You Age (Part 2), where we take a look at Osteoporosis.