Omana, a dear friend, recently returned from Chile. She gave us some interesting insights into Chilean cuisine. Perhaps there’s a Spanish influence in their food, but Chilean cuisine contains 3 popular vegetables – lettuce, tomato and potato. Avocado is widely used in their dishes. Avocado is rich in mono unsaturated fats (the good variety). Meats, sea food, breads, corn form the carbs and protein sources in their diet. Pisco, aka Pisco Sour, is the local and most popular drink in Chile. Quinoa is also popular here because it’s one of their major crops. Compared to many other grains, quinoa has good amounts of protein.
If any of you have more inputs on Chilean cuisine, do share.
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A friend of mine sent me an email about an article published by a US writer about how 4 foods accelerate aging. The 4 foods named in this article are wheat, corn, sugar and vegetable oils (like soybean, canola, etc). How factual is this information?
Wheat and corn do not accelerate aging, for sure. On the contrary, they provide us with nutrients that are essential for good health. Although gluten-free foods are becoming a rage in the West, the only persons who need to avoid wheat are those who are allergic or intolerant to wheat and its products. Perhaps gluten can be a topic for another discussion!
Sugar and oils accelerate aging only if taken in large quantities and / or replace healthy foods. Sugar consumption has gone up in urban India by large amounts. Sugar robs the body of some important nutrients which can be replaced only by eating healthy foods. In that sense, sugar can be a villain. Also, extra oil intake (especially the high PUFA ones) can tilt the fatty acid balance in the body and accelerate free radical damage. In that sense, some of the vegetable oils can be seen as villains.
The bottom line is reduce sugar and fat consumption, and there’s no need to avoid wheat and corn if you are not allergic to them.