DIETARY CHOICES PLAY AN IMPORTANT ROLE IN REDUCING CANCER RISK
Thinking about cancer is something most of us would rather avoid, but today we know that paying more attention to our cancer risk is something that can yield real dividends. Researchers tell us the majority of cancers we face are preventable—not through new drugs or medical breakthroughs, but through simple lifestyle choices.
The foods you choose each day are one of the most important factors in protecting you and your family from cancer. Most Americans eat a diet that is far too high in fat and calories. Even more important is what the average U.S. diet lacks: a variety of vegetables, fruits, beans and other plant-based foods.
Olive or canola oil spray
1/2 cup whole raw almonds
3/4 cup halved raw walnuts
3/4 tsp. ground cumin
1/2 tsp. paprika
1/2 tsp. garlic powder
1/8 tsp. salt
Cayenne pepper, to taste (optional)
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Place nuts in small bowl. Spray lightly with oil and toss to coat. Add spices and toss to blend thoroughly.
2. Spread nuts on baking sheet. Roast until fragrant, about 15 minutes. Serve warm or at room temperature. Store in airtight container. Makes 5 servings.
Per 1/4 cup serving: 181 calories, 18 g total fat (1 g saturated fat), 4 g carbohydrate, 5 g protein, 1 g dietary fiber, 58 mg sodium.
Canola oil spray
1/2 cup skim milk
1/2 cup canned pumpkin
1/4 cup canola oil
1 tsp. dried grated orange zest
1 1/2 cups unbleached flour
1/2 cup sugar
1 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. cinnamon
3/4 tsp. nutmeg
1/4 tsp. salt
1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Spray muffin tin lightly with spray oil.
2. In a medium bowl, beat egg, milk, pumpkin, oil and grated orange zest, mixing well.
3. In a separate bowl, mix together dry ingredients. Mix into pumpkin mixture.
4. Spoon batter into greased muffin tin, filling each 1/2 to 2/3 full, and bake until pick inserted in middle of muffin comes out clean, about 20 to 25 minutes.
5. Remove from oven and set on wire rack to cool, about 5-10 minutes. Remove muffins and allow to cool completely on rack.
6. Serve immediately or store in plastic bag or other sealed container, but do not refrigerate. (If making more than one batch, extras can be frozen.) Makes 9 muffins.
Nutritional Information: Per serving: 191 calories, 7 g. fat (less than 1 g. saturated fat), 29 g. carbohydrate, 4 g. protein, 1 g. dietary fiber, 134 mg. sodium.
BULGUR SALAD WITH RAISINS AND PUMPKIN SEEDS
1 cup bulgur wheat
2 cups boiling water
1 large celery rib, finely chopped
1 medium green bell pepper, finely chopped
1 cup canned chickpeas, rinsed and drained, or 1/2 cup crumbled feta cheese (optional)
1/2 Granny Smith apple, peeled and finely chopped
1 cup loosely packed parsley, chopped
1/3 cup raisins
2 tsp. extra virgin olive oil Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
3 Tbsp. toasted pumpkin seeds, coarsely chopped
1. Place bulgur in large bowl. Add water. Let stand until bulgur is al dente, about 20 minutes. Drain well in strainer, pressing gently on bulgur to remove most of the moisture. Transfer bulgur to dry serving bowl.
2. Add celery, bell pepper, chickpeas or cheese if desired, apple, parsley and raisins. Stir to combine.
3.Add lemon juice and oil. Toss with fork to coat well. Season with salt and pepper, if desired. Just before serving, toss with pumpkin seeds. Makes 4 servings.
Nutritional Information: Per serving: 215 calories, 4 g. total fat (<1g. saturated fat), 44 g. carboydrates, 6 g. protein, 9 g. dietary fiber, 28 mg. sodium.
BARLEY, TURKEY AND BUTTERNUT SQUASH CASSEROLE
2 small butternut squash
2 tsp. olive oil
1 green bell pepper, seeded and diced
1/2 cup minced onion
1 tsp. dried sage
Freshly ground black pepper, to taste 2 cups fat-free, reduced sodium chicken broth
3/4 cup quick-cooking barley*
1/2 lb. cooked turkey breast, cubed or diced
1/2 cup crumbled feta cheese
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Coat a 4-quart baking dish with cooking spray.
2. In a large pot of rapidly boiling water, boil squash halves 5 minutes or until not quite tender. Drain. When cool enough to handle, scoop flesh from each half and dice. Set aside.
3. In a large saucepan, heat oil over medium heat. Add green pepper, onion and diced squash. Sauté 3 minutes.
4. Add sage and pepper and stir to coat. Add broth and bring to a boil. Add barley and return to boil. 5. Reduce heat to low, cover and cook 10 minutes, until barley is tender and liquid is absorbed. Mix in diced turkey.
6. Transfer mixture to prepared baking dish and top with feta cheese.
7. Bake, uncovered, 30 minutes, or until cheese is golden. Makes 6 servings.
*Most supermarkets and health food stores carry quick-cooking barley.
Per serving: 275 calories, 5 g. total fat (2 g. saturated fat), 42 g. carbohydrate, 18 g. protein, 10 g. dietary fiber, 368 mg. sodium.
The American Institute for Cancer Research (AICR) is the nation’s third largest cancer charity, focusing exclusively on the link between diet and cancer. The Institute provides a wide range of consumer education programs that help millions of Americans learn to make dietary changes for lower cancer risk. AICR also supports innovative research in cancer prevention and treatment at universities, hospitals and research centers across the U.S. The Institute has provided more than $65 million in funding for research in diet, nutrition and cancer. AICR’s Web address is www.aicr.org