Archive for April, 2009

Instant Brown Rice Curry

If you like brown rice and if you like curry dishes, then you can spice up a bowl of plain brown rice with a little curry powder and a dash of salt. It’s just a simple thing you can do to add a little variety.

Instant Brown Rice Curry

  • 1 cup cooked brown rice
  • 1/4 tsp curry powder
  • Dash salt

Add 1 cup cooked brown rice to bowl, then mix 1/4 tsp. curry powder and a dash of salt. Serve while hot.

Add a cup of fresh, cooked brown rice to a bowl and mix in 1/4 tsp of curry powder and a dash of salt. This is very quick and easy. If you like curry dishes, you should like this.

Milled Flaxseed

milled-flaxseed-miniMilled flaxseed is a good natural food product that is high in Omega 3, Alpha linolenic acid and fiber. I prefer to buy Northern Edge brand because it comes in a vacuum-packed, air-tight re-sealable bag. Once the flaxseed has been flaked, it can become rancid very quickly. This particular brand is carefully milled at a cool temperature to preserve the nutrients.

For example, when making oatmeal, I will add the milled flaxseed after cooking. I will never add it to the boiling oatmeal during cooking.


Bananas are a great food you can eat either as a snack or with cereal or even in cooked dishes. They are very high in potassium. They always make me feel feel relaxed. Plus they are a good, high energy food. Bananas are perfect for a healthy eating plan.

Brown Rice

Brown rice is one of the staple foods for a healthy eating plan. Many cultures throughout history have recognized its nourishment value and you will easily find many delicious recipes that use brown rice. We decided to buy a rice cooker (see photo to left) because making rice with a rice cooker is very easy. You simply add measured amounts of rice and water, turn it on and it will cook perfect rice every time – automatically. This is an older model made by the Zojirushi company (a Japanese manufacturer). This model was about $80 several years ago. It has a built in "keep warm" cycle and has push button controls for brown rice and white rice.

Most rice cookers nowadays are fully automatic with a built-in warmer and timer with cooking options for brown rice and white rice. We recently purchased one at Costco as a gift for someone for about $30. That was a pretty good deal, but we don’t have any actual experience with it. Just reading some of the online reviews, Zojirushi models seem to be the best.

If you don’t want to buy a rice cooker, then you will have to use a regular stainless steel cooking pot with a good sealing lid. You add measured amounts of rice and water (approx 1.5 cups of water per cup of rice), then you set the flame high to boil the water and rice. Then you will turn down the flame and partially cover the rice (allow a gap in the lid) to allow steam to escape. After the rice has been cooking for a few minutes, open the lid and look for gaps or holes ("craters"). At this point, put the lid on tight and turn the flame way down low and let it simmer for about 15 minutes. Do not open the lid during this time. Keep it on tight. When the rice is done, open the lid and fluff the rice.

Here’s how to cook brown rice in a rice cooker. Start by measuring out the amount of rice you want to cook. I will be making 3 cups in this example.

Note: The rice cooker comes with a cup for measuring the rice. The instructions tell you to add so many "cups" of rice to the cooker. The cup is not a US cup (8 oz.), rather it is the more traditional tea cup or coffee cup which is 6 oz. (177 ml).


Rinse the rice thoroughly – several times – until the rinse water is clear.

Strain the rice after each rinse … I will usually rinse about 5 or 6 times.

After rinsing, add water. The cooker has marks on the sides of the cooking pot. I will add water up to the 3-cup mark.

Place the cooking pot in the cooker. Here it is just before closing the lid.

Set the cooker for cooking brown rice and push the button to start cooking. This model has a red LED indicating that the rice is cooking and a yellow LED for the rice to "keep warm". Just before the rice is done, the yellow LED will flash, indicating that it is almost finished cooking.

When the rice has finished cooking, this model will beep out loud to alert you. Open the lid and fluff the rice as soon as it is done to allow excess steam to escape. Close the lid back down to keep warm.

Fluff the rice and serve.

Study Shows Alpha-Lipoic Acid Reduces Triglycerides

At Oregon State University’s Linus Pauling Institute, a study was conducted that demonstrates how Alpha-lipoic acid can be effective in reducing trigycerides. The study was conducted by Dr. Regis Moreau and colleagues (Judy A. Butler and Tory M. Hagen). High triglyceride levels will often occur in obesity and can lead to liver disease, atherosclerosis and premature mortality. Triglyceride levels can be reduced with proper diet and exercise, but these measures are not always effective for everyone.

In the 5-week study, rats were bred to be obese and diabetic. When the rats were 5 weeks old, they were given 200 mg of Alpha-lipoic acid per day per kg of body weight. A control group of rats were given the same diet without the Alpha-lipoic acid. The study showed that although the triglyceride levels in the rats that were given the Alpha-lipoic acid doubled, the triglyceride levels of the control group quadrupled. This demonstrated that Alpha-lipoic acid can be effective in lowering triglycerides.

The study was cited in an articled published February 20, 2009 in the online journal: Archives of Biochemistry and Biophysics (“Lipoic acid improves hypertriglyceridemia by stimulating triacylglycerol clearance and downregulating liver triacylglycerol secretion” In the article, Dr. Moreau states,”The extent of triglyceride reduction was really dramatic, we didn’t expect it to be this profound.”