Animal and Plant Based Proteins

Vegetable ProteinUsing Animal And Plant Based Proteins For Healthy Cooking is a cause of concern for many people because there is so much information out there it can become very discerning. What is to much, when is it not enough, what is the best protein, can you get the protein your body needs without eating meat, and on and on……

Proteins are referred to as body building foods. Proteins are very important as they help in building and repair of muscles, replenishing lost blood, production of enzymes and other important body chemicals. The Mayo Clinic recommends that we get between 10 and 35 percent of our calories from protein and that we get more plant protein than animal protein.

A higher intake of protein is recommended for quicker healing of wounds. Lack of protein can result in nails, skin and hair in poor condition; in addition lack of protein can lead to a poor immune system putting one at a higher risk of communicable diseases.

Protein is categorized into animal and plant based proteins. Animal Proteins include all fish, poultry, red meat and pork. Plant based proteins are non-meat products, such as, vegetables, grains, and beans, and are listed in detail below.

Why Include Protein In Each Meal

Weight Loss

Proteins give a fuller feeling, which, discourages overeating, which, is necessary in weight loss. Since proteins are digested steadily they provide continuous energy which gives the body more endurance when working out for a firm and fit body. It is recommended to include a lean protein for breakfast for more energy throughout the day.

Build Muscles

Proteins help in the building of strong muscles when working out. Strong cartilage that occurs from intake of proteins supports the muscles properly for a great physic. Protein is also necessary for the creation of gorgeous skin and strong bones. Remember to eat proteins in moderation as the excess is stored as fat.

Brain Function

The brain requires amino acids for its daily functions. It is necessary to eat a variety of proteins so that the brain can gain the most benefits.

Promotes Healthy Metabolism

Metabolism slows down as one ages resulting in unwanted weight gain. Including a small portion of lean protein in all your meals promotes healthy metabolism. The age and the gender of a person will determine how much protein should be consumed for better health.

Replenishment of Lost Blood

Women of child bearing age lose a small amount of blood every month through their menses. Someone involved in an accident may lose a large amount of blood. For that reason protein is required to replenish the lost blood. It also helps in boosting immune and nervous system for better quality of life.

Factors To Consider When Cooking Animal Based Protein

Do Not Overcook or Undercook Animal Proteins

Overcooked animal proteins become tough and difficult to digest; furthermore exposing Proteinthem to high temperatures for a long time may cause change in their character that may be toxic to the body.

Undercooked animal proteins may contain bacteria that may cause illness. Learn how to cook animal protein properly for maximum benefit.

Trim Off Fat Before Cooking

Fat is usually stored under the skin of chicken and other animal proteins. As a result, it is necessary to cut it off before cooking to stay away from consuming unhealthy fat. The leaner the protein the better it is for your health.

Divide Into Easy to Cook Portions

Most animal proteins need to be frozen before cooking so that they do not go bad. It is necessary to pack it into easy to cook portions to avoid defrosting the whole piece every time. Bacteria may develop on food when it is defrosted and putting them back in the freezer can cause food poisoning.

Plant Based Proteins

• 1 cup spinach has 5 grams protein
• 2 cups cooked kale has 5 grams protein
• 1 cup boiled peas has 9 grams protein
• 1 avocado offers 10 grams of protein
• 1 cup broccoli has 5 grams protein
• 1 cup cooked sweet potato has 5 grams protein
• 2 ounces of walnuts offer 5 grams of protein
• 1 ounce of pistachios offers 5.8 grams of protein
• 2 tablespoons of almonds offers 4 grams of protein
• 1 ounce cashews offers 4.4 grams of protein
• 3 tablespoons of tahini offers 8 grams of protein
• 1 cup Quinoa – 9 grams protein
• Brown rice, oat bran and wheat germ
• 1 cup oatmeal – 6 grams protein
• Sprouted grain breads – 7-10 grams protein
Lentils and Beans
• 1 cup of lentils has 18 grams protein
• 1 cup garbanzo beans/hummus have 14.5 grams protein
• 1 cup of black beans, pinto or white kidney beans have 13-15 grams protein
• 1 cup of soybeans has 28 grams protein
• 1 cup of tempeh has 30 grams protein
Non Dairy Milk
• 1 cup of soy milk offers a whopping 11 grams of protein

protein from nutsPlant based proteins are good for you because;

a) They are low in fat that may clog your arteries.
b) They are high in fiber which is necessary for a healthy digestive system.
c) Plant based proteins are cheaper and are easily available.

A balanced diet is necessary to ensure your body gets all the nutrients it requires. Therefore make sure to include your healthy carbohydrates with lots of fruits and vegetables served together with the recommended amount of lean Animal and Plant Based protein. Of course if you are a vegetarian and do not eat animals it is very important that you eat a wide variety of vegetables to get your complete proteins.

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Ninja Blender Smoothie

SmoothieI have gone back to making a smoothie for breakfast or maybe I should call it brunch as I never seem to get to it until a few hours after I have started my day..My Ninja Blender Smoothie is a one – two and done process that I love. It contains a lot of green vegetables but because I have the habit of adding a slice of fresh beet to it I get a strange color. As anyone who has done that knows, the red beet color takes over everything and unless you use a lot of beet the color is a little less than exciting, but the flavor is great..

It is now only two weeks until we return to our home in Mexico and as part of the last minute buying process, I have purchased the Ninja Mega Kitchen System Ninja Mega Kitchen System (BL771) New Price: $207.69 Old Price: $249.99 You Save: $42.30 to take with us. I have wanted a Ninja system for a long time because I believe in using all of the produce when I make a drink. I have a juicer but it removed all the fiber and just gives you clear juice…not that is not always bad, but when I start my day I want all the nutrition I can pack into my smoothie….Here is the recipe I am presently using to start my day…

5.0 from 1 reviews
Semi-Green Smoothie
Recipe type: Smoothie
Cuisine: All
  • 1 kale leaf including the stem
  • 1 large swiss chard leaf including the stem
  • 1 beet leaf including the stem
  • 1 large or two medium carrots
  • 3 or four sprigs of parsley
  • ⅛th wedge of fresh beet from medium sized beet
  • 1 piece fresh ginger, I use a piece about the size of a quarter, ¼ inch thick
  • 1 Granny Smith Apple
  • 1 medium sized ripe banana
  • 1 scoop protein powder
  • 8 ounces fresh spring water
  • Ice
  1. Put everything into the large 72 ounce blender jar, cover it press blend, that's all there is to it.
  2. The Ninja system is so powerful that you can put everything into it at once, including the ice and it will blend you a perfect drink in a matter of a couple of minutes.

The energy level I feel from this smoothie is much more than I expected when I started making it a couple of days ago….I also have a recipe for a great tropical fruit smoothie that I will share with you in the next article.

I use a protein powder called PlantFusion PlantFusion Protein Vanilla Bean 2lb New Price: $32.76 Old Price: $52.99 You Save: $20.23 but there are many others available at your local health food store. I happen to like this one because besides being a complete protein, it is Gluten Free, GMO free, has not soy and is made with sprouted Amaranth and Quinoa.

Kale gives us vitamins K, A and C as well as omega-3 fatty acids, and  copper, potassium, iron, manganese and more.

Swiss chard is a store-house of many phytonutrients, rich in B-complex group of vitamins plus protein, calcium, thiamine, selenium, zinc, and more.

Beets bring to the smoothie Potassium, magnesium, fiber, phosphorus, iron; vitamins A, B & C; beta-carotene, beta-cyanine; and folic acid.

Fresh Ginger has anti-inflammatory properties and is a powerful natural painkiller that fights many ailments including clods and the flu.

Carrots are an excellent source of vitamin A and the antioxidant beta-carotene as well as fiber, vitamin K, potassium, folate, manganese, phosphorous, magnesium, vitamin E and zinc.

Parsley brings us chlorophyll, vitamin A, B, C, and K, folate and iron as well as calcium, magnesium, manganese, phosphorus, potassium, sodium, vanadium, and zinc.

Granny Smith Apples  are rich in carbohydrates and fiber as well as Potassium and vitamin C.

Bananas are a great source of potassium as well as vitamins B-6 and C.

There are a lot of other great vegetables that I will be adding or exchanging over the next few days including spinach and bell peppers…In a world where High Frutose Corn Syrup is added to just about everything we buy except fresh vegetables and fruit, I really enjoy treating my body to a home made smoothie…

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Super Bowl Food Ideas

Party FoodWe need some Super Bowl Food Ideas because Today is February 1st. the day we picked to restart our New Years Resolution for losing a couple of pounds and eating heather….The question might be, can we do it…The answer is yes.  There will always be roadblocks to work around like February 14th which is Valentine’s Day My Valentine New Price: $4.49 Old Price: $4.99 You Save: $0.50 here in the United States, which usually means roses and chocolates for someone you love…We will write more about that over the next two weeks because this year it falls on a Saturday, which could be a challenge for some of us.

So, Back to Super Bowl Food Ideas that won’t blow the diet.

Lets start by changing up the dips from the usual and make something that is a little heather… Our first item will be a Curried Sweet Potato Dip

Sweet Potato Spread

Curried Sweet Potato Dip
Recipe type: Party Food
Cuisine: American
  • 2 medium size sweet potatoes, peeled and diced small
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1 Tbsp curry powder
  • 1 tsp fresh ground black pepper
  • ¼ cup roasted pine nuts
  • ¼ cup sun-dried tomatoes, finely chopped
  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees and get out a large baking sheet.
  2. In a bowl, toss together the sweet potatoes, olive oil, curry powder, and black pepper, then spread onto the baking sheet.
  3. Bake in preheated oven for 20 minutes, stirring often, until sweet potatoes are tender.
  4. Remove from oven, let cool slightly, then put sweet potatoes into a food processor and puree until smooth
  5. Once the mix is smooth spoon out into a bowl.
  6. Add the pine nuts and tomatoes to the mix and stir to combine.
  7. Serve at room temperature.

Serve with blue corn tortilla chips or assorted fresh vegetables.

Party Dip

The other dip we will be offering at our place this afternoon is, Homestyle Sweet Onion Dip

Homestyle Sweet Onion Dip
Recipe type: Party Food
Cuisine: American
  • 2 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1 medium Vidalia or Walla Walla sweet onion, diced
  • 2 garlic cloves, peeled and diced
  • 1 can (16 oz) cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
  • 2 Tbsp fresh lime juice
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • 1 tsp dried basil
  • pinch cayenne
  • kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • ¼ cup diced sundried tomatoes, rinsed in hot water, then drained
  1. Put the olive oil in a large heavy skillet over medium-low heat, add the onion and cook until soft and light gold in color (caramelized) - this will take about 15 minutes if done correctly; stir frequently.
  2. Remove from heat and put onions in a food processor, then add the remaining ingredients and blend until smooth. Add more olive oil if the mixture is too thick.

This one also goes well with Blue corn tortilla chips Garden of Eatin' Tortilla Chips, Blue Corn, 16 Ounce (Pack of 12) New Price: $58.68 Old Price: $94.63 You Save: $35.95 as well as celery sticks.. This is a nice healthy substitute for those prepackaged onion dips.

We are also going to serve Mango Chutney Turkey Burgers

Turkey burger with mango salsa


You can find the recipe for the burgers at:


I hope you enjoy the game, just keep in mind that there are many Super Bowl Food Ideas you can enjoy and still keep your New Years Resolutions….

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Your New Year’s Resolution

New YearsAre you still following Your New Year’s Resolution or has life kind of gotten in the way of the plans you laid out to make this the year you get in shape by eating the right foods and adding a little exercise to your daily routine? For many of us, the plans made for the new year last about two to three weeks and then things happen and we miss a day, then two days and before long, that resolution is tucked away in the backs of our minds. It will remain there quietly until next December 31st when we will bring it out, dust it off and start again…..If you are one of those that have managed to keep going and are making progress toward a whole new you, Congratulations….If however you have slipped a little, read on, I will share with you some ideas that may just help you keep on track to reach those goals.

The first step is to remove Your New Year’s Resolution from January 1st and move it to February 1st..Your going to make the change, but you are going to wait until life isn’t quite as stressful. For many of you, December 31st is a night of partying that lasts well into the wee morning hours. For many, there are all the football games on January 1st which  includes some snack foods, perhaps a beer or cocktail or at the very least some cold soda for the head. For those with children, they are all home from school and depending on their ages, can be a stress factor all by themselves. And that’s just the first day…..Does that sound like a good time to try and make positive changes to your life? Not really…

The second advantage to moving Your New Year’s Resolution starting date to February 1st is that by the end of this year, you will have months of success to support you through all those food feasts and parties that start with Thanksgiving and continue through New Years apple pieDay…You will have developed healthy eating plans so that while you join in with your friends, you won’t over do it, destroying all that work you have put into becoming the success that you are. For many people, those 5 or so weeks between Thanksgiving and New Years Day packs on the pounds. They get the idea “Heck, I’ll just start new on January 1st so another serving of those mashed potatoes and perhaps another slice of pie won’t hurt………However, for those of us that waited until February to start, those special meals will not be resolution killers. They will be meals where we enjoy what we eat while maintaining control of the calories so that we don’t gain weight over the holidays…

It’s the end of the Month, Has January been good to you or are you ready to start Your New Year’s Resolution on February 1st? If you are ready to kick start your healthy diet and exercise program over, join me as we take the adventure together…We have some great plans, good information and enjoyable recipes to share with you over the coming months that will hopefully make the challenge easier and fun.

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Turmeric and You

turmericThere seems to be a rediscovering of Turmeric lately. Today we will talk about Turmeric and You and why it is so important, First however we need to know what Turmeric is. I wrote an article about it in July of 2011 because along with garlic and ginger I feel it should never be far from your recipes. In other words, it should be used often not only for its flavor, and added color but also for our health.  Long overlooked as a herb for health in North America, Turmeric has been held in high esteem in Continue reading

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Butternut Squash Soup

butternut squashAt this time of year, we eat a lot of squash and Butternut Squash is one of my favorites. As a soup it is one of those taste great, stick to the ribs soups that along with a chunk of homemade healthy bread slathered with butter, can make up a complete meal.

Butternut Squash is a rich source of vitamin A as well as the B-complex group of vitamins like folates, riboflavin, niacin, vitamin B-6, thiamin, and Continue reading

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Your Thanksgiving Dinner Table

Thanksgiving DinnerFor some of us, feasting at Your Thanksgiving Dinner Table will be nothing like feasting At the first Thanksgiving table. How was it back then, and what would be the difference between the two tables? Let’s take a look and see what has changes.

We’ll start with a look at our own Thanksgiving table, or take a look at an iconic American picture of this holiday feast. Chances are, in the center of the table sits a big turkey stuffed with all kinds of savory goodies. Then you’ll find bowls of whipped potatoes and hand made gravy, plus a bowl of sweet cranberry relish, alongside piping hot dishes of the ever popular Continue reading

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Enjoying A Healthy Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving TurkeyWe can Enjoy A Healthy Thanksgiving by Staying Focused on Friends and Family and not so much on the “all you can eat” offerings on the dinning room table. As hard as this might sound, keep in mind that between Thanksgiving day and New Years day there are going to be many many opportunities to eat, some of them healthy and some of them, well maybe not so healthy.


Compared to other holidays in America, it seems that our Thanksgiving has taken Continue reading

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A Little Thanksgiving History

Carving the turkeyIt’s time to share A Little Thanksgiving History and how the transformation of Thanksgiving traditions has changed over the years. The Wampanoag tribe were the Indians that helped the settlers and were there for the first Thanksgiving. We do not hear much about them except for this time of the year when most of the country celebrates Thanksgiving.

The settlers had reason to celebrate; it was their first real harvest, and they wanted Continue reading

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Water to Grow Beef

raising cattle for foodThis past week I wrote and article that included a little about the Water to Grow Beef. Namely I mentioned that between 1,500 and 3, 000 gallons of water is used to produce one pound of beef. You can read the complete article at; One of my  friends has suggested that perhaps my information is incorrect and that it takes only about 30 gallons of water to produce a pound of beef.  My friend felt that I had Continue reading

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