Keep it vegan until six, then eat whatever you want. No calorie counting and no banned foods; lose weight and get healthy, with a side-bonus of supporting a more sustainable food system. Sounds pretty good, right? Mark Bittman has been building toward this diet for years now, and released his manifesto, VB6, a few months ago. I read the book. I tried the diet. Here's what happened.
Q: What are some good ways to up my veggie count for the day without smoothies? My blender broke down and I'm looking for ideas to get my family and myself eating more vegetables while we wait to make the investment in a heavy duty blender.
Recently a friend and I stopped in to try out a new sushi bar setup inside our neighborhood Whole Foods. We started with a mandatory carafe of sake and a seaweed salad, a particular favorite of mine as of late. When the first round of orders came out, my friend commented how the seaweed salad wasn't bright green, as we're used to seeing. We then realized this was because the salad wasn't dyed for visual appeal. That got me thinking about what other food is commonly dyed to the point where its natural color is unexpected.
Public Health Department inspector Rob Acquista explaining health and safety practices.
It all started with an email from Mary, a reporter at The Columbus Dispatch, the local newspaper in my town. "We are looking to have a health inspector examine a home kitchen the way they might a professional kitchen," she said. And she had immediately thought of me — not because I have a dirty kitchen, she hastened to add, but because I write about food and, she said, I seemed "like the kind of person who might be game for this."
Oh really? Let a health inspector run his gloved fingers over my kitchen? Was I brave enough? I couldn't turn down a dare, and a few weeks later two city health inspectors, a photographer, and a reporter showed up at my door. Here's what happened.
I'm a big tea drinker and so when friends shared a post from Food Babe on what's really in the tea that we drink, I was very interested. I took a look at the post and according to Food Babe and her sources, depending on the brand, there might be a lot of chemicals and pesticides not only in tea, but in the tea bags as well. Have you read about this? Do you pay attention to the ingredients in your tea?
The calorie calculations you see on the back of a food label are based on a system developed in the 1800s, one that doesn't take into account individual variables like the type of food, whether it is cooked or raw, or how it has been processed. And did you know that even the types of bacteria you have in your gut can affect how many calories you get from food? Scientific American explains why the calorie counts we rely on may not be so reliable after all.
Earlier this summer, I spent a week in Boston, staying with some good friends in their cozy Somerville apartment. A short walk from their house, I discovered 3 Little Figs Bakery & Cafe, and their roasted sweet potato sandwich quickly became a lunchtime ritual. This sandwich is one of those incredible combinations that's so perfect, you can't believe you never thought of it before: roasted slices of sweet potato, sun-dried tomatoes mixed with goat cheese, a mound of peppery arugula, and chewy wholegrain bread to hold it all together.
I have vivid memories of Turkey Gravy Day. And Pepperoni Pizza Fridays. My mom always packed our lunches growing up, but she did let us choose a day we'd like to get hot lunch, and those were my go-to favorites. Looking back, I realize that the nutrition factor was low although the flavor factor was, apparently, quite high. Today there are still Pepperoni Pizza Fridays, to be certain. But things are slowly changing in school cafeterias as well. For the better.
Do you wash your raw chicken before cooking it? This is a common practice encouraged by cookbook authors from Alton Brown to Michael Ruhlman to the great Julia Child herself. We've told you before why we're not big fans of washing raw chicken, but in case you're not convinced, watch this all-too-horrifying Germ-Vision video from a health researcher at Drexel University. You may never look at raw chicken the same way again.
Here at The Kitchn we get a lot of requests for recipes and ideas for those with diabetes and pre-diabetes — there seems to be a growing number of cooks out there looking for healthy, appealing meals and trustworthy advice about planning diabetes-friendly menus. This week we are asking experts to share their foolproof dinner menus for all kinds of diets and situations, and today, registered dietitian and certified diabetes educator Rachael Hartley has a full five days of fresh dinner menus sure to safely satisfy anyone's hunger.