Did you catch my blooper in the video? I had to laugh when I heard it. Once in a while I get tongue tied. Lol. We ran out of time for a do over.
In the last few weeks it’s been raining so much in my area of PA. Also, we’ve had some extra cold nights when the temperature has gone down to freezing. So, planting a garden had to wait on nature. I just finished planting some of my garden a few days ago. I’m always looking for ways to make gardening easier. This year in addition to planting a couple of tomato plants in the ground, I planted a tomato plant in a pot. I also planted herbs in pots on my porch. There’s nothing like homegrown fresh herbs and vegetables.
My dad use to have a plaque that he placed in a tree behind our house that said “He who makes a garden works hand in hand with God”. I have so many great memories of the gardens my parents had each year. They each had their own garden. This always made me laugh because they each planted the types of vegetables they liked that the other didn’t like. I always told them their gardens were the garden from heaven, (my mom’s), and the garden from hell, (my dad’s). My mom’s garden was pristine. There was never a weed to be found. On the other hand, it was hard to find the vegetables in my dad’s garden due to all of the weeds. All of the vegetables eventually ended up in the same place and they were both happy they had their own space. They were married 62 years. Somehow I think that having their own space had something to do with that.
In addition to vegetables containing a lot of vitamins and minerals, many of them are high in fiber. Here are some of the wonderful benefits of fiber for your health and weight.
1. Aids in weight loss
Fiber rich foods may help you stay trim. Foods containing fiber take longer to chew. This will slow your eating time. At the same time fiber helps you feel full and slows the emptying of your stomach, therefore, you will feel full without overeating.
2. Reduces Risk of Heart Disease
Studies have revealed people who consume a high fiber diet are less likely to develop heart disease. There are 2 types of fiber, soluble and insoluble. I will discuss both types. First I’ll explain soluble. Soluble fiber dissolves in water. Soluble fiber attracts water and forms a gel, which slows down digestion. Slower stomach emptying may also affect blood sugar levels and has a beneficial effect on insulin sensitivity, which may help control diabetes. Soluble fiber can also help lower LDL (“bad”) blood cholesterol by interfering with the absorption of dietary cholesterol.
Sources of soluble fiber: oatmeal, oat cereal, lentils, apples, oranges, pears, oat bran, strawberries, nuts, flaxseeds, beans, dried peas, blueberries, psyllium, cucumbers, celery, and carrots.
3. Lowers High blood Pressure
Foods high in fiber are usually a good source of the minerals potassium and magnesium. These minerals are needed to help regulate blood pressure.
4. Manages Diabetes
Water soluble fiber helps to regulate blood sugar by delaying the time for the stomach to empty. This slows the sugar absorption after meals and reduces the amount of insulin needed.
5. Prevents Cancer
A lifetime of eating a high fiber diet may help prevent specific cancers such as colon and rectal cancers. Fiber absorbs excess bile acids that are associated with cancer. It also decreases the amount of time for waste to pass through the digestive system. This decreases the time harmful substances remain in contact with the intestinal wall. Fiber adds bulk to the stool, which dilutes the concentration of harmful substance.
6. Reduces Constipation, Hemorrhoids, and Diverticulitis
Insoluble fiber is considered gut-healthy fiber because it has a laxative effect and adds bulk to the diet, which helps to prevent constipation. This fiber does not dissolve in water; therefore, it passes through the gastrointestinal tract intact. It speeds the passage of food and waste through your gut. As a benefit, fiber prevents constipation. Also, because there is less straining with bowel movements, hemorrhoids are less likely to develop. A person whose diet is high in fiber is less likely to develop diverticulitis.
Insoluble fiber is mainly found in whole grains and vegetables. Sources of insoluble fiber: whole wheat, whole grains, wheat bran, corn bran, seeds, nuts, barley, couscous, brown rice, bulgur, zucchini, celery, broccoli, cabbage, onions, tomatoes, carrots, cucumbers, green beans, dark leafy vegetables, raisins, grapes, fruit, and root vegetable skins. The recommended daily intake for total fiber is generally between 25-30 grams daily.
1 cup cooked chicken cut into bite size pieces
1 cup cooked beans (example: Mayocoba, cannellini, Northern, etc.)
½ cup chopped tomato
½ cup diced zucchini or cucumber
½ cup finely sliced celery
2 chopped green onions
1 Tbsp. chopped fresh basil
1 Tbsp. chopped fresh parsley
1 ½ Tbsp. fresh lemon juice
1 ½ Tbsp. organic olive oil
salt and pepper to taste
If using dried beans follow the directions on the package for soaking and cooking. I always add a bay leaf and ½ teaspoon of salt to the cooking water for the beans. The amount of dried beans you are using will at least double in size when they are cooked.
Toss all of the ingredients together. That’s it! Enjoy.