As February comes to an end we say goodbye to hues of red, maroon, pink and white, dangling heart decorations, chocolate and love. Why not continue to embrace the festivities of February and focus on your love for you this month by simply focusing on RED?
Add stamina, strength and years of life to your heart by adding variations of red into your daily diet. Heart disease is the leading cause of death in America. One in every three adults has some form of heart/cardiovascular disease; the majority of which are highly preventable through diet and life improvements. By enhancing your diet with red foods you can help to maintain a healthy heart, vision and immune system, and even reduce your risk of cancer. The antioxidant that gives fruits and vegetables their reddish tint is known as resveratrol.
You may be familiar with this term in reference to red wine. Resveratrol in red wine comes from the skin of the grapes that are used to make wine. Recent studies suggest that red and purple grape juices may offer some of the same heart benefits of red wine, such as reducing LDL (bad) cholesterol, reducing risk of blood clots and helping maintain a healthy blood pressure. Both red wine and grape juices contain antioxidants including flavonoids and resveratrol. Also, eating whole red or purple grapes provides the same antioxidants as red wine plus the fiver content which can aid in an overall heart healthy diet. A few other beneficial red foods to add into your daily diet as a snack or into your meal times could be cherries, cranberries, pomegranates, red or pink grape fruit, watermelon, beets, red onion, red peppers, kidney beans, rhubarb, tomatoes and even peanuts.
As a main dish, side dish or as a wrap try this resveratrol packed gluten free Wild Rice Salad recipe from Simply Recipes!
*If cooking gluten-free, use homemade chicken stock or gluten-free packaged broth.
- Put the chicken broth in a medium sized saucepan. Add the rice and wild rice, bring to a boil, reduce heat to low, cover. Let cook for 40 minutes. Remove from heat. Cool completely.
- Heat a small skillet on medium high heat. Add the peanuts. Cook, stirring frequently, until lightly toasted. Remove peanuts from pan and let cool.
- Whisk together the olive oil, red wine vinegar, sugar and sesame oil.
- In a large bowl gently mix together the cooled cooked rice, chopped celery, red onions, peas, dried cranberries, peanuts and dressing. Add salt and pepper to taste, if needed.
- Chill completely before serving, Serves 8-10.
For more information on Heart Healthy Diets Made Easy and to learn the essential changes needed to pamper your heart, join us from 6-7:30 p.m. Wednesday, Feb. 22 at Pilgrims Market for a free interactive seminar.