Greens, Vegetables, Fruits, and Memory

(Josh Cohen) #1

Eating leafy greens, dark orange and red vegetables and berry fruits, and drinking orange juice may be associated with a lower risk of memory loss over time in men, according to a study published in the November 21, 2018, online issue of Neurology .

The study does not show that eating fruits and vegetables and drinking orange juice reduces memory loss; it only shows a relationship between them."

If anyone is looking for ways to eat more vegetables, I’ve been using a system to make sure I eat healthy food. Every few days I steam a large batch of vegetables and put them in containers like in the images below. Then when I go to eat something, I can take a few things from each container and quickly make a healthy meal. I usually make a sauce out of tahini, serve with brown rice, and put chopped parsley, cilantro, and scallions on top. I also make bean soups and put a variety of vegetables in them. The system works really well.

(Silvio B.) #2

I find your system interesting and I have a few questions, if you don’t mind me asking:

  • Do you use only fresh vegetables or also frozen ones?
  • Do you reheat the vegetables (and if; how?)
  • For how many days can you keep them in the fridge until they start going bad?

When work is stressful, I always tend to eat unhealthy because I feel exhausted and don’t feel like cooking in the evening. I really need to change my nutrition and I’ll try your system.

(Josh Cohen) #3

I use fresh vegetables, because I think they are more nutritious, but frozen vegetables would probably be better than no vegetables.

I usually try to eat a variety of different species and colors. The colors of the plants (red, yellow, green, blue, etc.) provide clues about the nutrition. The number of species of plant foods seems to be related to the diversity of gut microbes, so I try to eat as many different plant species as possible (30+ species per week).

One of my staple foods is Brassica oleracea (brocolli, cauliflower, Brussels sprouts, and cabbage are all the same species). I’ve only watched part of this video, but even just the first few minutes should be enough to get a general idea about its value. It’s easy to base meals on that plant.

I usually don’t reheat them, but you could. When I do reheat food, I just put the chopped ingredients in a pot with a little water. If I have soup in the refrigerator, then I take a little soup and add my vegetables to it and heat it up, though I still usually eat things cold, unless eating the food right after cooking it.

I don’t worry about making food taste good as much as making it as healthy as possible. I don’t have certain kinds of breakfast or dinner foods but just eat whatever is healthy and available.

Two of my favorite quotes about food are:

  • “Eat to live, don’t live to eat.”
  • “Food is not a recreational drug.”

Junk food is addictive – the less junk I ate, the less I wanted it, and the better that healthy food started to taste. There might be an adjustment period.

If I’m away from home and need some food, I sometimes buy a little fresh cabbage or broccoli and eat it raw – it’s cheap and prevents me from eating less healthy things. (See the video above for the nutritional benefits of raw cruciferous vegetables.)

I think 4-5, maybe more.

Another easy way to eat healthier without much effort is to make bean soups. Legumes are some of the most nutritious foods out there.

A list of ingredients like the one below can be put into a pot or slow cooker for a couple of hours to make 5+ days’ worth of food:

  • some beans (soak them overnight, except for things like lentils, split peas, adzuki beans, mung beans)
  • water
  • a parsnip or two (chopped into 3-4 pieces)
  • a chopped onion or leek
  • some garlic
  • some ginger
  • a few carrots
  • a few stalks of celery

A little while before it’s done add some leafy greens, like chopped kale or cabbage. Things like turnips, rutabaga, sweet potatoes, and squash are also good additions near the end.

I don’t add salt during cooking, but before eating soup, I usually add these things (4+ more plant species):

  • chopped fresh Italian parsley
  • chopped fresh cilantro
  • a chopped scallion (a.k.a., green onion)
  • crushed fresh garlic
  • a spoonful of vinegar
  • a spoonful of olive oil (a small amount of fat helps with nutrient absorption)
  • salt & pepper
  • chopped steamed vegetables
  • chopped leafy greens (lettuce, etc.)
  • seeds or nuts
  • raw sauerkraut and/or sauerkraut juice

After you have the soup and the steamed vegetables, you can have more variety by mixing them in different combinations.

Rice cookers are useful for cooking rice without spending much time on it. I usually eat brown rice. Buckwheat/kasha, amaranth seeds, oats, and quinoa are also easy grains to cook.

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(Silvio B.) #4

Thank you very much! :smile:

(Josh Cohen) #5

I cooked more soup last night and took a few photos in case it might be useful to anyone.

I usually take some beans and put them in a slow-cooker like this. These are mung beans, because they don’t need to be soaked. (I didn’t have any soaked beans ready.)

The bowl on the right has some vegetables in it – parsnip, onion, garlic, celery. Those go in the soup. I baked the sweet potatoes. The purple ones on the bottom left are sold as “satsuma sweet potatoes” here.

This is the soup with some turnips, rutabagas, and spices added, before cooking.

Right before it was done I added some spinach for extra nutrition.

I put some brown rice in the rice cooker at the same time.

Between the soup, rice, steamed vegetables, and some fruit and nuts, it’s many days worth of healthy fast food. For breakfast this morning, I took a scoop of rice and some soup and ate it cold with some seeds and nuts (for a little fat content). It took only five minutes to prepare. :slight_smile:

(Silvio B.) #6

Nice :slight_smile:

I’ll slowly start to substitute unhealthy foods with some healthier alternatives.

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As some people call it, ‘plant forward’ diets help people and the planet in the long run. I read up about this diet ( a while ago. Since then I started keeping track of small things - interesting vegetables, simple recipes, places for great fresh produce, easy to forage for plants, edible seed list, things my grandma tells me about food in her childhood etc. After all food is key to life. I created virtual flash cards with this information to make it easy for me to pull up information as and when required. It has not been easy, but I’ve stayed with eating better. This is change I need to make. It’s good for my brain and body. Keeps me light and sharp!

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