Executive Chef Paul Marks will be sharing some of his favorite recipes each month. To keep you eating healthy during the resolution slump, here is a fresh, spring topper to use over baked or grilled fish or chicken.
2 oranges (one just for juice)
2 green onions
Salt and pepper
1 ounce basil
• Cut off the rind of the lemon, lime and one orange, slice fruit and mix together.
• Juice one orange and add to other fruit.
• Slice green onions and add to mix.
• Toss with a little olive oil and season to taste.
• Toss torn basil with salsa just before serving.
By Allyson Marrs
The U.S. Meatless Monday campaign launched in 2003, in association with the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. Since then, it has garnered worldwide attention, as millions of people have made the pledge to go vegetarian one day each week.
Campaign organizers urge that during that one day, people bring their cultural customs and specialties to the table—providing these are meat-free, of course.
Nutrition is one part of the movement, but the other contributor is the toll it takes on the environment to produce meat. Massive amounts of land, water, fertilizer and oil are required for meat production—more than it takes to grow other nutritious options, according to supporters of the undertaking.
Sir Paul McCartney is an outspoken supporter, and he has urged the United Kingdom to adopt the meat-free practice. According to the Meat Free Monday campaign, "the UK's Food Climate Research Network suggests that food production from farm to fork is responsible for between 20 to 30 percent of global green house gas emissions," with livestock alone responsible for half that number.
So why Monday? Well, it turns out that most people see Monday as the marker of the new week—a way to start over, or start fresh. It's typically the day most people will begin their diets, quit smoking or jump into a new exercise regime. Those pesky unhealthy habits that dominated the weekend are in the rearview mirror, and positive choices feel easier to make.
The media and health experts eagerly jumped on board to encourage these changes. "Woman's Day" magazine has included a Meatless Monday recipe in their monthly recipe calendar since 2004. The documentary film "Food, Inc." included Meatless Mondays as one of the Top 10 Things You Can Do to Change Our Food System. In July 2009, "The Huffington Post Green" began running a weekly Meatless Monday recipe column. In December of that same year, Al Gore endorsed the campaign before the European Parliament, arguing that it'll improve the world's climate crisis.
Even famous chefs and TV personalities joined the table. Mario Batali offers Meatless Monday menus in all of his restaurants, and Oprah decided to have the same options in the Harpo Studios cafeteria.
The nutritional aspect boasts its own benefits, and the program is careful to follow U.S. Department of Agriculture nutrition guidelines to make sure important food groups aren't neglected.
"By going vegetarian, people can reduce their risk of diabetes, heart disease and cancer," said BC registered dietitian Laurelee Misseghers. "Additionally, the Adventist Health Study 2 recently showed that those consuming plant-based diets weighed 30 pounds less than those consuming animal products, so it can aid in weight loss as well—as long as cheese is also avoided, as that contains a lot of calories."
Laurelee also said that gram for gram, pumpkin seeds contain more amino acids that the body needs than a rump steak contains. But she does warn that "fake meats" aren't necessarily the most healthful and should only be used occasionally.
The Meatless Monday campaign offers numerous recipes to keep your days delicious, but below are the basic food types to remember if you want to feel full without meat-specific protein.
• Soy, including tofu
Both Polaris Grill and Splash offer vegetarian options if you'd like to give Meatless Mondays a try, and if you want to learn more about the movement and what it can do for you, your family and the environment, visit www.meatlessmonday.com.
Executive Chef: Paul Marks | email@example.com
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