Warm Vegetable Chowder for a Cold Winter Night

By: Dorine Lam, RDN, MS, MPH


A great meal choice for adrenal fatigue is our vegetable chowderThis chowder is great to drink during a cold night. If your digestion is poor or if you are in a catabolic state, you can blend all the vegetables in soup to help improve the absorption of many nutrients.

Most people are aware of the health benefits of olive oil, but you may not be aware that it is not just a great choice for a salad dressing, it’s an excellent choice for cooking and frying. Studies show that it is more resistant to heat damage than many other cooking oils, so it retains its health benefits.

When heated, the fatty acids found in many common vegetable-based cooking oils tend to react with oxygen, which can damage the molecules of polyunsaturated fats. It is thought that this is due to the many double bonds in the molecular structure. Olive oil consists primarily of monounsaturated fats, which means the structure of the molecules contains just one double bond.

While extended heating, or very high heat, can still cause damage, studies show that olive oil can be heated to over 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 36 hours before showing signs of damage. Another study showed that olive oil could be used in deep frying for over 24 hours before showing enough damage to be harmful.

Other studies have found olive oil helps to reduce depression risk. Those who consume diets high in trans-fats, such as those found in many fast foods, are more likely to suffer from depression than those who consume diets high in unsaturated fats and were significantly more likely to be diagnosed with depression than those who consumed diets high in olive oil and other sources of poly- and monounsaturated fats. The results held true even when adjusted for other lifestyle-related risk factors.

Although many frown on heating oils like the ones used in this vegetable chowder recipe, studies suggest that olive oil can withstand the heat for prolonged periods before sustaining damageOlive oil may help protect the brain against Alzheimer’s disease. Rates of Alzheimer’s diagnoses are lower in Mediterranean countries than anywhere else in the world. Scientists found that oleocanthal, a phenolic compound found in olive oil, reduced the plaques associated with the development of the disease. Other studies have found that frequent use of olive oil could also protect against other cognitive difficulties.

The oleocanthal in olive oil has also been shown to have anti-inflammatory properties and can help reduce pain in much the same way as ibuprofen.

Traditionally doctors have recommended low-fat diets to reduce the risk of diabetes and other chronic diseases. It turns out that the type of fat one consumes is more important than the amount. Recent research shows that monounsaturated fat like that in olive oil actually lowers the risk of many of these diseases.

Olive oil can help keep your liver functioning and removing toxins effectively. Researchers have also found olive oil can protect the liver from cell damage caused by oxidative stress. In one study, rats were exposed to a toxic herbicide. The rats that had been fed a diet high in olive oil showed less liver damage after exposure than those who had not received olive oil.

Finally, olive oil can help protect your digestive system. Studies have shown that those who consume the most olive oil reduced their risk of ulcerative colitis, cancers of the digestive tract, and other digestive issues, by as much as 90%.

While most doctors prefer that you avoid fats, the healthy fats in vegetable chowder can aid in detoxificationIngredients A:

  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 tbsp butter
  • 1 large white or yellow onion, diced
  • 2 medium red bell pepper, seeded and diced
  • ½ tsp dried thyme

Ingredients B:

  • 3 cups almond milk
  • 2 ½ lbs potatoes, peeled, cut into small cubed
  • 5 cups vegetable stock

Ingredients C:

  • 4 cups corn (frozen or fresh)
  • Salt and Pepper to taste

Ingredients D:

  • 1 lb green beans, trimmed, cut into 1 ½ in length

 
Method:

  1. Put Ingredients A in large soup pot, cook over medium heat until vegetables are softened, around 8-10 minutes. Stir occasionally.
  2. Add in Ingredients B. Bring to boil then reduce to low heat. Cover and simmer for until the potatoes are almost tender, 8-10 minutes.
  3. Add Ingredients C. Simmer till corn is tender, 3-5 minutes.
  4. Transfer 4 cups of the soup to a food processor or blender, blend until smooth.
  5. Return to pot. Add Ingredients D. Simmer and cook until green beans are tender, 5-8 minutes.
  6. Serve hot.

Serves 6-8
Calories: 266 calories
Fats: 7.1 gm
Protein: 7 gm
Carbohydrates: 48 gm

© Copyright 2015 Michael Lam, M.D. All Rights Reserved.




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