Meatless, but... meh.
Sometimes I worry that something gets lost in the message of "Meatless Monday." One could follow this prescription to the letter and then ruin some of the benefits by eating a lot of processed grains, refined sugars and deep-fried stuff. Let me give you an example of a meal that is 100% meatless that I wouldn't ask you to order on a bet: grilled cheese sandwich on white bread, side of fries, a large cola to drink and twinkies for dessert. This is not what I mean when I speak of MM.
Because part of The Monday Campaign is the idea of "Healthy Monday." Keeping the focus on whole grains, fruits, vegetables and legumes will make for healthier choices for your Monday eats. A new meta-analysis of previous studies has concluded that each daily serving of white rice increases diabetes risk by 11%. Other foods with a similar high glycemic load, such as white potatoes, white bread and white pasta (see chart here), are equally implicated in both weight gain and diabetes risk. When you remove the bran and germ from the whole grain, you not only remove most of the protein, fibre and nutrients, you also turn it into almost pure sugar in its impact on the body. Whole grains digest more slowly and provide more balanced nutrition. Here are twelve great examples to get you started.
There's a reason fast food restaurants push these kinds of crappy foods - profit. The markup on soda pop is 1200% - 500% on french fries. No wonder they're always harping at you to eat the stuff. Some drive-thru employees get disciplined if they don't say "fries and a coke with that?" That's why the new ban on large "sugar sweetened beverages" proposed by New York Mayor Bloomberg is great news. Someone has to draw a line in the sand. Refined sugars have been called "toxic." They are certainly something we should limit as much as possible... let's make Monday the day we start trying to limit not only meat, but all unhealthy food from our plates.
This week's recipe is a great source of whole grains. You've heard of Hawaiian pizza? This has some similar ingredients, but is way better. Hope you think so, too. And I also wanted to thank my two readers from the Netherlands who provided comments from their own experience of The Vegetarian Butcher's products, featured in last week's post. It makes me wish we had a location here in London, Ontario. Maybe someday.