Pumpkins&Mussels!

Just like every day, i started my day with two glasses of water on an empty stomach then had my cup of coffee (1 tsp of Nescafe, 3 tsp of fat free coffee mate, 2 tsp of sugar) followed by 30g of Bran flakes with a glass of vanilla flavored soy milk (Alpro) ! This combination is a true delicacy and is most importantly  fulfilling!

I started my lunch with a green salad then had two large bowls of pumpkin soup that i’ve prepared!

During my live episode this morning (on OTV at 9h00 am), I talked about the health benefits of pumpkins and presented different healthy yet tasty recipes that one could develop with pumpkins!

Pumpkins exist in different colors and have hundreds of different varieties; they are rich in antioxidants, high in fiber, are a good source of vitamin A, vitamin C, vitamin E, Magnesium, Potassium, Iron and are most importantly low in calories and fat! (Each cup of raw pumpkins has around 50 calories)!

Pumpkin soup is usually prepared by boiling then pureeing pumpkins and adding full fat cream, stock and sometimes butter… In order to avoid all those extra calories and to trim fat from your dish, you could simply boil the pumpkin chunks the puree them and simply add low fat milk and laban ayran to dilute them! Green onions, ciboulette, white pepper are all additional seasonings that you can also add to your bowl!

As an afternoon snack I enjoyed eating half a papaya that’s a great source of antioxidants (Carotene, Vitamin C, Flavonoids) in addition to B Vitamins, Folate and other important minerals and fiber! With one kiwi that’s also a great source of vitamin C and fiber!

Papaya contains the digestive enzyme papain !

As for dinner i had one of my favorite meals!

A portion of mussels in white wine!

Mussels are among the healthiest shellfish:

A comparison of 100 g of mussels to a 100 g of red meat have shown that mussels have more protein, more Iron, more Zinc, less fat, less saturated fats, less cholesterol and the quarter amount of calories!

A 100 g portion of cooked mussels contains around 24g of proteins and 172 calories! It is rich in Iron, Zinc,Omega-3, Manganese, Phosphorus, Selenium, Vitamin C and Vitamin B12

Zinc is an essential mineral to the immune system, the metabolism, pancreatic function and a healthy sex life. Therefore all along with the chemical compounds found in mussels, zinc improves the sexual status especially in men, regulating sperm production and increasing testosterone.From that perspective, mussels can be labeled as aphrodisiacs!

Among all shellfish, mussels have been found to have the highest rate of Omega-3.Many studies have found that a diet rich in monounsaturated fats all along with Omega-3 reduces the total mortality by 70% in patients who have experienced a heart attack.And that is all due to the virtues of Omega-3 in lowering the total blood pressure decreasing the triglycerides and cholesterol levels and thus lowering the chances of developing cardiovascular diseases. It also helps the heart beat at a steady clip and not dangerous one.

Dietitian Nicole Maftoum

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