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Things you eat only for their "health" benefits

Today at a business breakfast with a client, the following exchange occurred.

ME: Something wrong with your grapefruit juice?

CLIENT: No, it's fine.

ME: But your nursing it like it's castor oil.

CLIENT: Oh, it's just that I don't like grapefruit juice at all. I only drink it for its health benefits. I need the Vitamin C and its antioxidants. Suppose to cure cancer!

ME [bites tongue]: Oh, ok. I was worried there for a minute.

ME [bubble thoughts]: "Cure" cancer? Doesn't he mean prevent cancer? Whatever. And don't alot of fruits have Vitamin C, as well as antioxidants. Life's too short to eat something unappetizing merely for health benefits. Who wants to be healthy, but miserable? Note to self: make sure to buy client big bottle of Vitamin C for the holidays ...

Anyhow, as I finished off my eggs benedict I sat there for a moment and thought if there was anything I ate ONLY for their health benefits. Nothing came to mind. Sure, I eat lots of things that are healthy, but those healthy things I also enjoy eating even if they weren't healthy.

So, 'hounds ... are there things you consume ONLY because of their reputed health benefits?

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  1. raw garlic it's suppose to be real good for your heart but who can eat raw garlic i can't

    8 Replies
    1. re: bigeater15

      I actually eat raw garlic cloves all the time.

      I shell them and pop them into straight into my mouth like, well, jelly beans.

      1. re: ipsedixit

        I love raw garlic, too, and add it to salad dressings whenever I can. To answer your original question, I think the reverse is more common: a lot of folks exclude (rather than include) various ingredients, dishes, etc. from their diets for health reasons (and their potential health benefits).

        I always forget to put those flax seeds in my smoothies/morning cereal, even if they're supposed to be good for you...so, I'm with you on this one, there are so many things that I enjoy eating and also happen to be healthy, that I don't see a need to intentionally add something tasteless or something that I don't like just for health reasons alone.

        1. re: jeni1002

          Sometimes I add flax seeds to oatmeal -- they fall under the category of tasteless but entirely inoffensive, so why not.

          1. re: Amuse Bouches

            Definitely true, IMO - that's why I keep forgetting them :)

        2. re: ipsedixit

          Mon Dieu! I love raw garlic but if I ate it like that, I'd be popping Altoids just as frequently.

          1. re: ipsedixit

            I put raw whole garlic cloves in a jar with jalapeno slices and the brine from the jalapeno slices. Makes the garlic cloves hot and spicy! And are they ever fun to just munch down on! :)

            1. re: Morganna

              OMG, great idea!!!! How long does it take for the garlic cloves to become pickled? A few days? I always keep a jar of jalapeno slices on door of fridge.

              1. re: Val

                Not very long. They're usually fine to start eating in a few days. I buy big containers of peeled garlic and huge cans of really hot jalapenos at Costco. I used canning jars, tossing in the pepper rings and garlic together, then pouring in the brine/juice and gave some to friends, too. :)

                I also put some in just a plain saltwater/vinegar solution in order to preserve them. I put some others into olive oil. I kept ending up with huge amounts of moldy/useless garlic. Now I have all I need and it lasts a good long time!

        3. Unfiltered, unsweetened cranberry juice. Just thinking about it makes me shudder.

          6 Replies
          1. re: adrienne156

            for those of us that love our bladder and need to take care of it! UTI's beware - - this is a necessary evil for those of us who are prone to infections. I just suck it up and gulp it down just like medicine. aaah, it sucks to be a woman.

            1. re: eebudee

              I have since switched to taking cranberry pills... up to 4 a day! No flavor and it keeps those pesky infections away.

              1. re: wino22

                yes, thank god for cranberry pills!! I used to drink the super-mega-strong cranberry juices and would shudder at each sip (even though i love "normal" cranberry juice)! I'm unfortunately very prone to UTIs, so yep, stuck with the stuff, lol.

            2. re: adrienne156

              No kidding! I got a UTI the day before a recent camping trip - a weekend so no MD for me. I won't take those sulfur pills anyway so no big deal. I had to drink 3 quarts of that nasty stuff (plus goldenseal & echanacia extract and a grapefruit seed extract) while my husband sucked down beers. Oh the injustice!

              1. re: SweetPea

                Not that I really wanted to broadcast my health to CH, but go to TJ's and buy a bottle of their unfiltered, unsweetened cranberry juice and drink the whole thing whenever you feel one coming on. It's gold.

                1. re: adrienne156

                  Last time I had that problem, all I had around was Ocean Spray, so I drank the whole bottle and it worked instantly. Lucky for me. Although maybe the vodka I added to the last few glasses helped too! (I really couldn't take it anymore plain)

            3. None whatsoever. I eat very healthily, but I enjoy every single one of those foods. I'm the girl who drools at the thought of macrobiotic meals. :-)

              The only stuff I'll consume purely for its health effects is medication.

              10 Replies
              1. re: piccola

                ahh, a kindred soul! glad i'm not alone in my belief that one can genuinely crave regular servings of vegetables and still consider oneself to be a foodie and/or chowhound :)

                we're fortunate to love healthy foods...life's too short to eat things you don't enjoy, and by regularly enjoying the healthful things, we just might be rewarded by living a little longer...

                1. re: goodhealthgourmet

                  Huh? I don't know any chowhounds who rule out any food group, veggies included. If anything, I think of people who dislike veggies as unadventurous, meat-and-potatoes anti-chowhounds. That said, one could still dislike a particular healthy item.

                  1. re: tatamagouche

                    no, no, it's not about ruling out a food group. i just meant that i typically enjoy healthier preparations. i'd rather have my salad with just a squeeze of lemon than a heavy dressing, and to me, cooked vegetables usually taste better steamed with fresh pepper, herbs and a hint of salt & than they do slicked with oil, butter or cream.

                    the point i was trying to make was that i don't feel the need to force myself to eat 'healthy' foods, because i actually enjoy - and often prefer - the things others feel nutritionally obligated to choke down.

                    1. re: goodhealthgourmet

                      I was wondering about that, can't imagine a true gourmet not appreciating the beauty of fresh veg... But it is true, I usually prefer vegetables stir-fried in a wok (with a scant amount of oil) than steamed, and find them easier to digest. Idem a bit of extra-virgin olive oil on salad, though I also love lemon and hate heavy dressings.

                      1. re: lagatta

                        I'd take a nice roasted salmon fillet over any steak, I'd take roasted veggies over any fried starch, I'd take steamed broccoli over any potato (except maybe a baked sweet, lol). I love healthy food, and can't imagine it any other way. My favorite (quick easy no prep) lunch at work is a can of amy's split pea soup with a bit of chili powder added, and a salad i create myself with some green garlic (raw garlic included) dressing. I seriously eat it every day. Add a veggie stirfry for dinner (no oil) and I'm a happy girl. Oh and for breakfast? scrambled egg whites with spinach, tomatoes, onions, and cremini mushrooms. But..... I do force myself to add flax seed oil to stuff, even though its a bit off putting for me

                    2. re: tatamagouche

                      as for your contention that chowhounds don't rule out entire food groups, jnstarla just posted on this very board that she hates fruit...

                      1. re: goodhealthgourmet

                        There are a lot of things I do that "no self-respecting chowhound does!!!!" :)

                  2. re: piccola

                    Same here. Except I'm not sure what macrobiotic means. I like to eat almost everything (love fruit and veg), so I don't see any reason to eat/drink anything I don't like. And there are other sources of vitamin C than grapefruit juice!

                    1. re: Kagey

                      macrobiotic refers to a specific type of 'whole foods' lifestyle. i don't follow a macribiotic diet, but certainly do apply some of the principles to my nutritional lifestyle. [then again, i'm a nutritionist, so most foodies/hounds think i'm nuts anyway.]


                      1. re: goodhealthgourmet

                        Yeah, I'm certainly not macro - for one thing, I'm veg, which rules out fish - but for some strange reason I crave those big whole grain-beans-steamed veggies-seaweed bowls...

                    1. re: hrhboo

                      Indeed. I hear it does wonders for cholesterol.

                    2. Green tea...I really don't like it and am buying Sen-cha green tea now which I find more palatable...I alternate that with my beloved oolong tea which I drink straight...I have to add a little honey to the green tea in order to drink it...oolong I love just straight, no sweeteners...the green tea I just don't like very much...not a big deal, though, as long as I alternate between the two. I believe green tea is still considered the more healthy of the two.

                      10 Replies
                      1. re: Val

                        Same for me with the green tea although I did just find a blueberry green tea at Trader Joe's that's much more palatable to me than the regular stuff.

                        1. re: mollyomormon

                          wow...no kidding? Blueberry green tea? Very interesting (we don't have Trader Joe's here in SW Florida! alas!) ..ginger green tea I also like but cannot find it everywhere, sister in law sent me an assortment of Wissotzky Teas from Home Shopping Network--Hey! I really liked it!...I like plain ginger tea just fine, in fact I LOVE it when I have a cold or just don't feel good which isn't often...combining ginger with the green tea is okay, at least more acceptable...get my drift? I just don't like green tea unless I ADD something else to it! hee! I've tried and tried...the Sen-cha is about the closest I can come to drinking it straight...and I STILL need a little honey added to it!

                          1. re: Val

                            adding a few drops of pure, undiliuted juice or concentrate might do the trick for you. you can try blueberry, pomegranate, cranberry, black cherry...

                            1. re: goodhealthgourmet

                              Thank you; the concentrates I CAN find at a local health food store...I always feel like I'm "cheating" by adding a little (1/2 teaspoon) honey to the green tea but I believe it is better than white sugar; see that? I can't find much justification of what I just said..honey vs. white sugar; if you research it, it really isn't THAT different...I just don't look forward to drinking it but I try to have some every day instead of coffee in the afternoons.

                              1. re: Val

                                just know that you'll still want to sweeten your tea...the concentrates are typically very tart. but they will enhance the flavor and add fruity notes, likely making it much more palatable and enjoyable for you.


                                1. re: goodhealthgourmet

                                  Heh, reading this thread again made me want to update: I tried genmaicha tea while in San Francisco in January and really loved it...that toasted rice flavor clinched the deal. So I bought a large bag of loose genmaicha and have been enjoying green tea this way ever since, no more honey needed; plus, it expanded my horizons, brewing loose tea now. <snerk> There's hope for me yet!

                                  1. re: Val

                                    i love genmaicha. you're so right - the toastiness is what makes it!

                            2. re: Val

                              I know exactly what you're saying. It tastes a little like drinking dirt to me which I don't find enjoyable.

                                1. re: mollyomormon

                                  I tink it tastes like smelly old gym socks. :)

                          2. High fiber, no sugar organic cereal - can't remember the name of it. looks like cheerios, tastes like cardboard. But the health benefits of fiber are more than reputed, I often don't get enough in my regular diet, and I figure this is better for me than a fiber supplement. so most mornings I work my way through a small bowl of cardboard bits and vanilla soy milk (and then I have my real breakfast).

                            5 Replies
                            1. re: cookie monster

                              sounds like you're eating "simply fiber." is that it? although it bears closer resemblance to the food pellets we fed to our lab rats in grad school than to cheerios...

                              1. re: goodhealthgourmet

                                That's it! I should say that the picture on the box makes it looks kind of like Cheerios, but the actual stuff does resemble gerbil feed.

                                1. re: cookie monster

                                  i knew it :)

                                  here's a tip. try mixing it into yogurt or cottage cheese. add: a drizzle of honey and a sprinkle of cinnamon; or a couple of spoonfuls or your favorite fruit spread; or some microwaved frozen berries with their juices. let the mixture sit in the fridge for a while before eating. the cereal absorbs some of the moisture & softens & expands, and it lends an interesting texture.

                                  the other alternative is to have it as you already do - plain with your vanilla soy - but nuke it before eating. it's actually not bad as a softened hot cereal.

                                  1. re: goodhealthgourmet

                                    Wow, this is too funny. I also eat Fiber One cereal, purely for the health benefits, and had a conversation with someone just this morning about how it resembles food pellets you'd feed a pet. And I also have discovered that pretty much the only way to make it appetizing is to do as GHG described: I mix it with fresh berries and thick yogurt the night before. By the time breakfast rolls around, it has softened to a texture almost like oatmeal, and and absorbed the other flavors. I actually am at the point where I kinda like/crave it like that.

                                    1. re: charmedgirl

                                      yup, it was sort of an accidental discovery for me that turned into a treat when i used to eat that stuff!

                            2. There are many things that are good for me that I don't like so I mix it in food I do like so I can't taste it. Flax seed oil in my smoothie, carrots in my soup, protein powder in my baked goods...

                              1. Oatmeal. How boring is that?

                                Flaxseeds soaked in a glass of water. Big Gulp o' Slime.

                                3 Replies
                                1. re: Anonimo

                                  wait, are you using whole flaxseeds or ground? i hate to be the one to tell you this, but if they're whole, you've pretty much been torturing yourself for no reason. the body derives very little nutritional benefit from whole flaxseeds because they're extremely difficult to digest/break down.

                                  you're better off sprinkling ground flaxseeds on your salad, or using flax oil.

                                  or better yet, stir ground flax into your oatmeal and you won't even notice it.

                                  btw, oatmeal is so NOT boring if you get creative and jazz it up with different flavors/seasonings...sweeten it with honey, maple syrup or agave nectar; sprinkle in some cinnamon or pumpkin pie spices; add a little vanilla and a dash of instant espresso powder for cappuccino oatmeal; stir in a tablespoon each of your favorite nut butter and fruit spread or preserves; add 1/2 cup of fresh or frozen berries and a tablespoon of sliced almonds; slice in 1/2 banana, and add a drizzle of honey and some chopped walnuts...the possibilities are endless!

                                  1. re: goodhealthgourmet

                                    like i've posted many times before, my boyfriend is the most sheltered eater i've ever come across, so i have to continuously come up with new ways to "sneak" nutrition into his food. I put ground flax seed in stuff, use soy-nut butter instead of peanut butter, put agave syrup and flax seed oil in his oatmeal, sub half cauliflower in his mashed "potatoes", so i bet he'd be posting on this thread if he cared, lol

                                  2. re: Anonimo

                                    I beg your pardon? I eat a bowl of steel-cut Irish oatmeal for breakfast most winter mornings. I love the stuff.

                                  3. I add flaxseed oil to dressings and such, though it has no flavor whatsoever of its own. Ingredients with no flavor seem like a waste.

                                    1. The issue does not come up for me because I enjoy such a wide variety of fruits and veggies that I am getting probably every possible "good" anti-oxidant. What bugs me is that my 85 year old father who is in excellent health and takes no medications will make comments about a food I prepare and say "Oh I read that is so good for you" or tell me they are eating something because of the "health" benefits. Usually it is something they already like, but it is as if he doesn't trust his own instincts (the instincts that got him where he is) and has to have an outside source approve of his diet. Choking something down because of reputed benefits rubs me as wrong since there is usually another item that would accomplish the same result- if the health claim is even valid.

                                      1 Reply
                                      1. re: torty

                                        how ironic, my 86 yr old grandmother is the same way. loves to talk about how she always preferred healthy food, and now pushes flax seed on me - how about salmon for omega-3 I ask? it's not enough, flax seed is so great b/c you can eat it in your cereal, see? have you been drinking your apple-cider vinegar? well, i eat yoghurt for the good bacteria. but apple-cider vinegar is so great - even the stars use it!
                                        in some ways that generation is more sceptical, in others it is less so. funny cycles of culture.

                                      2. i get those shots of wheatgrass, whenever i pass a juice shop. They aren't so terrible after awhile. It basically tastes like what you think your yard tastes like. I am still trying to choke down yogurt for the health benefits, but can't quite get past the sour milk taste.

                                        5 Replies
                                        1. re: cmarie

                                          Mix non fat plain yogurt with bananas and non fat milk and a smidge of chocolate syrup. The yogurt tates good then!!!

                                          1. re: cmarie

                                            i've tried to choke down wheatgrass, but my stomach literally rejects it... wish it weren't so merely for the health benefits... can't stand the idea of burping wheatgrass for the next 12 hours either... fortunately i love all vegetables, green and otherwise, and get more than my daily dosages of greens by standard ingestion processes.

                                            1. re: cmarie

                                              I actually love wheatgrass shots! lol Am I that weird?

                                              1. re: kubasd

                                                I love them too. I almost taste a level of sweetness in them. You aren't alone! Or, maybe we're both weird!

                                                1. re: BaltoPhilFood

                                                  we might both be weird, but we are getting some awesome health benefits!!

                                            2. All Bran extra fiber cereal. Yuk, a bowl of twigs with soy milk.

                                              10 Replies
                                              1. re: burntcream

                                                Hey, burntcream...try adding it to yogurt, not so bad! I use Fage 2% or 0% yogurt, some strawberry preserves and the All Bran...stays with me most of the morning too!

                                                1. re: Val

                                                  cottage cheese is another good vehicle for it. you can also get creative/sneaky with it...crush or grind it, and use as a substitute for bread crumbs or cookie crumbs in everything from breadings to pie crusts.

                                                  for breakfast, try microwaving for a few seconds it after you add the milk. it's not bad as a hot cereal.

                                                  1. re: goodhealthgourmet

                                                    I agree, I started turning my Fiber One/TJ's fiber twigs into a hot cereal and it was much better.

                                                    1. re: janethepain

                                                      I do the same (except I love ABEF even dry... I'm weird like that), but I'll mix either hot or cold water into the cereal, then mix in some cinnamon, vanilla, and a little splenda.

                                                2. re: burntcream

                                                  I can top that. In fact, I do. All Bran Extra Fiber cereal WITH a scoop of psyllium. And nonfat soy milk. I mean - oatmeal has about 4 grams of fiber. This little bowl of cardboard will give you a whopping 17 grams. About half your daily need. But we've actually gotten used to it, so it is no big deal anymore. We have both basically been following a cholesterol-reducing diet devised and tested (numerous times) by David Jenkins. I think it goes by the name of Portfolio Diet, and it reduces cholesterol as much as statins. However, it calls for okra. We drew the line at okra.

                                                  1. re: Just Visiting

                                                    the portfolio diet is extremely effective. i put a client on it a couple of years ago and he was able to reduce his dosage of statins big time! good for you.

                                                    but why no okra? have you ever tried it? i know some people find the texture a bit off-putting [if you overcook it or puncture the inner capsule when raw it can get slimy]...but if it's prepared well it can be delicious. one of my college roommates was southern, and thanks to her family i developed an appreciation for stewed okra with onions and tomatoes. it's a terrific natural thickening agent.

                                                    1. re: Just Visiting

                                                      Oat Bran. By itself - awful. But put a bunch on ice cream (low fat of course) and I love it. Reminds me of my younger days when I would put wheat germ on ice cream (still don't know why).

                                                      1. re: HunterJay

                                                        i used to put wheat germ on ice cream too! started sprinkling it into my cereal after i saw my grandfather do it, and it just evolved from there. also liked it mixed into cottage cheese or yogurt. the toasted stuff was best. added a nice nuttiness.

                                                        oat bran is so versatile...i would always cook up a thick, satisfying batch and then stir in my favorite flavored protein powder plus any other complementary flavorings, fruits, nuts or extracts. one of my favorite combos was chocolate protein powder & instant espresso powder...mocha oat bran! but i learned pretty quickly that the trick is to blend the protein in AFTER it's fully cooked, just before eating. if you try to cook whey isolate, it curdles and you end up with a clumpy, grainy mess.

                                                      2. re: Just Visiting

                                                        cooked okra is too googly for some people.
                                                        try pickled okra-- you might be surprised.
                                                        the pickling doesn't make it as ooey gooey, and it has a nice crisp texture (not to mention the tang of the pickling juices, etc).

                                                        1. re: dinaofdoom

                                                          mmm...yes! pickled okra is delicious!

                                                    2. My mom adores acai, the unsweetened 100% kind. She puts it in smoothies with frozen banana and soy milk. I haven't managed to try it yet, based on it's appearance--it's so purple and seedy, bleh. She says it makes her feel energetic. I'll stick with caffeine for now.

                                                      I cannot imagine drinking grapefruit juice if I didn't like it. It's flavor is just so distinctive, why would you do that to yourself? Eat an orange, client.

                                                      3 Replies
                                                      1. re: amyzan

                                                        acai is just really tart fruit, sort of like unsweetened sour cherries or tart blackberries...so when it's sweetened it's really very tasty. does your mom not sweeten her smoothies with ANYTHING? yikes. maybe she uses sweetened soy milk? some brands actually contain a lot of sugar.

                                                        1. re: goodhealthgourmet

                                                          She uses just frozen banana for sweetener, that's it. She drinks unsweetened Silk, too. I actually don't usually sweeten smoothies except for fruit, but those acai smoothies she makes have no appeal to me.

                                                          1. re: amyzan

                                                            the acai drinks i've tried have been ok palatable to icky (higher acai %). I find the oily look and the pruney taste off putting

                                                      2. Whenever I feel my red blood cell count is down, which is rare, but happens occasionally (it's a female thing), I eat liver and onions. I really love liver and onions, served with a bunch of Heinz 57 sauce, which I also never, ever eat, except with liver and onions. But I never make it because my husband hates it and I try to avoid seperate dinners as a rule. I saute some spinach with shallots in olive oil from time to time for the same reason, but when I'm really rundown, it has to be liver and onions.

                                                        9 Replies
                                                        1. re: Fuser

                                                          I did the liver thing during pregancy, purely for health benefits, until I read that the iron in liver cannot be absorbed in the presence of fat... so until you're planning to eat boiled liver, you're really just torturing yourself!!

                                                          I did the wheatgrass thing for a while.. chugged it down and then bit into a fresh slice of orange to take away the flavour.

                                                          Think doing shots of lawn clippings.


                                                          1. re: purple goddess

                                                            Random non-food related tangent, but PG I just looked at your profile page and realized that your avatar is a picture of dishes on a white tablecloth. I never studied it closely, but all this time I'd imagined it was a deformed, white cat.

                                                            1. re: purple goddess

                                                              But doesn't liver contain a lot of fat?

                                                              1. re: purple goddess

                                                                i didn't know that! my red blood cell count is low and my doc told me to try to eat liver once a week (too much for me even though i like liver).

                                                                i've read the iron in spinach is more digestible/absorpable but there isn't much in a couple reg size servings. is this correct?

                                                                1. re: purple goddess

                                                                  Actually, a high-fat diet increases iron absorbtion. http://jn.nutrition.org/cgi/content/a...

                                                                  So the best vehicle for fighting anemia might be my homemade pate--basically a pound of chicken livers and a stick of butter!

                                                                    1. re: chocabot

                                                                      I am prone to sports induced anemia, and will often make a steak and liver sandwich just to make sure my iron levels are ok. Good thing for me is that I really like both steak and liver.

                                                                      I'm also told that pork's blood is high in iron ...

                                                                      1. re: ipsedixit

                                                                        in some pho variations you can get blood jello, which is made of pork blood i think. it's not bad tasting but i can't really do more than a 2-3 cubes. i usually make calf's liver w/ onions and a balsamic sage reduction or chicken liver pate. other than that i don't get much liver. the bf will not go near the stuff and says "liver is a dirt sponge". i think i need to find some recipes...

                                                                        1. re: chocabot

                                                                          The Chinese stir fry cubed pork's blood with green onions.

                                                              2. Kashi cereal. With soy milk. The 13g protein one. If you like to wake up in the morning to a bowl of dirt with a helping of mud, this cereal is for you. I choke it down every morning because I don't eat much in the way of grains otherwise and because I need the fiber and protein. Some mornings, though, I just can't do it to myself.

                                                                12 Replies
                                                                1. re: Agent Orange

                                                                  AO, lay of that kashi stuff, it's affecting your brain!!!

                                                                  here in OZ, we have this stuff called Benefibre and what you do is sprinkle it on everything... in yer coffee... over yer stews, in yer curry's.. hell.. over yer ice cream...

                                                                  Get your fibre fix without eating something that tasts like mud and, clearly, affects your eye sight and mental health!!!

                                                                  Ed to add: and yes, it really IS tasteless...

                                                                  1. re: purple goddess

                                                                    we do have benefiber here...and a zillion other brands/types of fiber supplements and powders. they're convenient, but i still think it's best to eat whole foods. however, if it's a choice between using a supplement or nothing at all, sprinkle away!

                                                                    1. re: purple goddess

                                                                      Benefibre is sooo easy to take. Love it but can't tell if it's doing anything fibre wise. I take it because inulin is increases calcium absorption and intestinal flora (probiotic). Metamucil makes a cheaper version of the same.

                                                                      1. re: chocabot

                                                                        In terms of getting my fiber intake, I really love gnu bars. They can be found at TJ's or WF and are actually becoming pretty widespread now. Even little delis in NYC carry them.

                                                                        I believe they have 12 grams of fiber and I find them really tasty. Perfect for a filling afternoon snack!

                                                                    2. re: Agent Orange

                                                                      take a look at the tips i gave to cookie monster and anonimo above...maybe you'll find some inspiration.

                                                                      1. re: Agent Orange

                                                                        Ooh, I actually really like that Kashi stuff. I got into it because my aunt bought three boxes of it (must've been a sale?) and then hated it, and I inherited them. Sorry you don't share my enthusiasm!

                                                                        I would imagine that oatmeal with 1/4 cup of walnuts or almonds would probably have about as much protein and fiber as Kashi, and maybe you'll like it better. That's another favorite breakfast of mine. Especially when I add raisins, too.

                                                                        1. re: eastvillgirl

                                                                          Hey, I've got two boxes on top of my fridge; if you wanna swing down through Tampa, they're yours.

                                                                          I think I'll try getting creative with oatmeal as you and ghg suggested. I just need to get over unhappy Quaker oats memories from childhood. Wait, wouldn't chocolate chip oatmeal cookies be a great way to get those grains, fiber and nuts? Yeah, a dozen of those every morning would be a TON of oatmeal! Alright, I'm signing off to go make a batch right now for the next couple of breakfasts...

                                                                          1. re: Agent Orange

                                                                            I'm trying to eat more oats too. I make my oatmeal cookies with olive oil (instead of butter) and egg beaters (instead of eggs) and whole wheat flour (instead of white). I also add in an additional cup of oat bran. They're actually pretty good - they puff up a little more than normal, but they don't last more than 2 days in our house.

                                                                            1. re: HunterJay

                                                                              I'm intrigued. It's hard to balance one's love for chocolate chip cookies with one's need for a nourishing diet. Do you adjust the amount of sugar? And do you add dark chocolate or do you just live the chips out of the equation?

                                                                              I might try this with Quaker's recipe for "Choc-Oat Chip Cookies."

                                                                              1. re: Agent Orange

                                                                                there's always room for chocolate...as long as it's dark/semisweet :)

                                                                                it's fine to leave the chips in, particularly if you reduce the amount of sugar in the recipe. you can usually cut it by 1/4 to 1/3 without much noticeable difference in flavor...many recipes contain more sugar than they need. if you don't have sodium issues, add a pinch of salt to enhance the sweetness.

                                                                                the other option is to switch the type of sugar used. i personally do all my baking with agave nectar. it's sweeter than table sugar, so you use less...and the glycemic index is much lower so it's gentler on insulin & blood sugar responses. of course since it's a liquid you sometimes have to adjust the other proportions in the recipe, but when you add extra dry ingredients like oat bran - as hunterjay does - it works out perfectly.

                                                                                regarding the chocolate, use mini chips or baking 'bits' [or chop some really good semisweet or dark chocolate into tiny pieces] instead of using standard chips or large chunks. it makes it easier to distribute bits of chocolate throughout the cookies so you can still get the flavor while using less.

                                                                        2. re: Agent Orange

                                                                          Agent Orange, is that the one with twigs? The kashi with twigs seemed over the top for me.

                                                                          1. re: free sample addict aka Tracy L

                                                                            Yes to the twigs. Fortunately I get my whole grains from other sources nowadays, happily.

                                                                        3. orange juice, or any other fruit juice if a feel a cold or sore throat coming on. Otherwise I do not drink juices.

                                                                          3 Replies
                                                                          1. re: swsidejim

                                                                            oh, and water, I hate water, but after mowing the I am dehydrated, and know it is better tha chugging a soda or beer.

                                                                            1. re: swsidejim

                                                                              swsidejim...my heart goes out to you...i can't imagine a life of hating water!

                                                                              1. re: amanda3571

                                                                                To me water is flavorless, and boring. No caffeine, no sugar. I go days without having a glass of water.

                                                                                I find it kind of funny when i see the people who are attached at the hip to a water bottle myself.

                                                                                to each there own.

                                                                          2. I eat a lot of things while conscious of their health benefits, but I generally enjoy them (or find them inoffensive). I know when we were trying to have a baby, I did drink unsweetened grapefruit juice, which isn't my favorite (but I generally like grapefruit and grapefruit juice, so it wasn't a huge sacrifice) and during pregnancy, I'll add some soy powder to my smoothie for the protein boost, which makes it taste a little funky. Generally I like healthy food (as well as unhealthy food -- I'm no saint!) and if there's something I don't like, I find a substitute.

                                                                            1. Wheatgrass juice (and carrot, and tomato....)
                                                                              Green tea, though I do like it, just not every single day
                                                                              Goji berries

                                                                              3 Replies
                                                                              1. re: marmite

                                                                                you don't like goji berries? i think they're great!

                                                                                you know, they're also available covered in dark chocolate. extra sugar, yes...but additional antioxidants from the cacao too.

                                                                                one of those lower-guilt treats :)

                                                                                1. re: goodhealthgourmet

                                                                                  I've tried them both plain and with the chocolate, but all the chocolate made me feel like I was counteracting the health benefits. I should probably just chalk it all up to antioxidants anyway, since I don't really eat dark chocolate in any other form.

                                                                                  1. re: marmite

                                                                                    i love goji berries but i have to b careful becaue i can down a whole packet in one go! its not bad becasue a whole bag is packed with calories or anything (i am growing and need all the healthy calories i can get) but because they are 27 dollars a bag here in australia ;-)

                                                                              2. Food. It keeps me from dying of starvation. I figure since I'm stuck eating it pretty frequently, I might as well make sure it tastes good, which is why I'm here.

                                                                                As for things that taste less than wonderful with good benefits... shots of wheatgrass juice. It tastes exactly like you think it does. I find that a 2 ounce shot of it keeps me going way better than coffee ever can.

                                                                                1 Reply
                                                                                1. re: JK Grence the Cosmic Jester

                                                                                  "Food. It keeps me from dying of starvation."

                                                                                  I love that. I'll have to quote you when my family/friends give me evil looks from eating too much! :D

                                                                                2. Nope. I tried having semi-regular vegan lunches (with tofu!). I tried eating yogurt. I tried eating oatmeal. I tried lots of stuff that I don't particularly like because they're good for me. The one thing I have refused to do is soymilk.

                                                                                  I love food. Eating is a huge pleasure for me. I came to the conclusion that life is too short to waste eating things that you don't like just because they're good for you. I have a pretty nutritious diet to start with. I'm in good physical shape and don't smoke. I'm not going to waste a meal just because it may not always provide maximum health benefits.

                                                                                  1. Compared to all of the exotic and truly, factually tasteless stuff like bran twigs, mine are going to seem weird. I only eat peppers (bell peppers, red, green, yellow, orange, etc.) and onions for their benefits. I don't know, I just never liked them, but I'll eat them because I know they're good for me.

                                                                                    1 Reply
                                                                                    1. re: janethepain

                                                                                      i hate peppers cooked in most ways. try the non-green peppers roasted in your oven at 450 for 1hr, until entirely black. peel off skin after they've cooled. et voila, good tasting peppers with a nice texture. (in case you've never doen this -they taste nothing like the jarred roasted peppers).

                                                                                    2. Fruits. Except for watermelon, I just do not find fruits appealing in any form, any concoction.

                                                                                      1 Reply
                                                                                      1. re: gloriousfood

                                                                                        gloriousfood, I am the same way but substitute "bananas" for "watermelon" in your post. I hate fruit; I will eat what my husband buys because I know it's good for me, but I would so much rather have vegetables than fruit any day.

                                                                                      2. cream of wheat to build iron back up. Not milk I make it with water. Not awful, but I just do it.

                                                                                        1 Reply
                                                                                        1. re: chef chicklet

                                                                                          Did you know that calcium inhibits the body's absorption of iron?

                                                                                          Cream of wheat is supposed to be high in both calcium (even when made with water) and iron. Never understood why fortified products would have non-complementary supplementation. Most fortified cereals are the same way.

                                                                                        2. I occasionally take shots of ginger, which burn my mouth, because it one of the most effective ways to reduce nausia and it breaks up mucus. I also take shots of blue-green algae for the nutrients, which taste gross.

                                                                                          1. One thing I learned about milk on NPR caught me by surprise. The pasturization process binds the calcium to an amino acid called KC. Our stomachs can't break up this combination, so while milk is full of calcium, or body won't absorb most of it!! Also, taking Tums to increase calcium is counterproductive, because calcium absorption requires the very stomach acids that Tums reduces!

                                                                                            1. Green tea and soy milk. That's about all I can think of in terms of food/drink which I occasionally force down but never enjoy. I really like my fruits, vegetables and whole grains. On the other hand, there are plenty of foods that I now enjoy, but only began eating for their health benefits... until I realized that I like them! These include wheat bran and high-fiber cereals, spinach, and plain (unsweetend) yogurt.

                                                                                              1. I also forgot to add ginger - my parents have cut up fresh ginger for me to choke down, and they try to make it more palatable by mixing it with honey. I guess it's good for me because I seem to have poor circulation, but ughhh I don't like anything ginger-flavored (except ginger ale, cos it doesn't taste like ginger).

                                                                                                2 Replies
                                                                                                  1. re: katiepie

                                                                                                    I always make brown rice with stock -- chix or veggie. Not so boring then and with minimal non-nutritious additives.

                                                                                                1. probiotic yoghourt. Specifically, this stuff: http://www.biokplus.com/ It does NOT taste very good, but it does wonders in terms of improving intestinal function.

                                                                                                  4 Replies
                                                                                                  1. re: lagatta

                                                                                                    It's my personal belief that those yogurts are marketing scams. I mean, yogurt already contains probiotics, so I don't think it's worth the higher price for one more little bacterium.

                                                                                                    1. re: piccola

                                                                                                      piccola - true for the most part i think

                                                                                                      cbc did bacterial counts of some yogurts and supplements to compare with label claims:


                                                                                                      1. re: chocabot

                                                                                                        Well, I cleaned up a nasty digestive problem with the bio K stuff, and many doctors recommend it. Do read the site and google other info on the stuff; disclaimer, I have NO financial interest in that firm. I don't want to go into the rather unsavoury details on a foodie site! Let's just say it is easier for me to eat legumes and other nutritious stuff than it was.

                                                                                                        I usually consume ordinary goat's milk yoghourt (I don't eat cow's milk). I take the Bio K stuff only when my tummy and nether regions are upset.

                                                                                                        1. re: chocabot

                                                                                                          The CBC checked bacterial counts in regular yogurt and found plenty of active bacteria. That pretty much confirms my earlier comment that the so-called probiotic yogurts (like Activia), which are supposedly better, aren't worth the higher price - at least, not for the average person.

                                                                                                          It's like when the low-fat craze started and pretzel companies started writing "fat free!" on the bag, not mentioning that pretzels have always been fat-free.

                                                                                                    2. Green tea. I drink at least 2 cups a day, as many as four (decaffeinated). I really do not like the taste of it at all. I wait for it to cool and then gulp it down all at once. I keep thinking if I drink it regularly I'll come to love it, but so far (about 4 months) it hasn't happened. I don't wish to sweeten it, which makes it more tolerable, as there's no good way to as far as I'm concerned, you're either getting chemicals via artificial sweetener, or additional sugar, which I don't want or need.

                                                                                                      Also most fish I eat purely from a health perspective. While some of the fish I order ends up being pretty good, if given free choice between fish and pretty much any other item on the menu, including a vegetarian entree, I would choose the other things. I order it just because of the health benefits. It also offers automatic portion control for me, because while the first few bites might taste pretty good, by the time I get halfway done with a piece of fish, that's about all I can stomach. I had a new year's resolution to try to get it in twice a week but I haven't been able to make it happen.

                                                                                                      Once I get a little older and don't have to worry as much about mercury (I'm still of child-bearing age and am trying to conceive), I will add more canned tuna, which I actually like, but right now my max is once a week and a small serving. I actually switched to the chunk "light" instead of the solid white albacore that tastes better to me simply because it's supposed to have much lower mercury than the albacore, so that's another example.

                                                                                                      1. Red wine - the resveratrol might be beneficial, but it just pains me so much to knock back a bottle.

                                                                                                        1. jfood takes vitamin and mineral pills.

                                                                                                          As far as eating something only for it's health reason jfood is pretty simple:

                                                                                                          He eats NOTHING for its health benefits only. If it does not taste good, forgetaboutit. If jfood wants Vit -C plenty of 1000Mg tablets he can buy, a few anti-oxidents, out of the jar and into the mouth, other min/vits, multimin/multi vit pill.

                                                                                                          And WRT grapefruit juice, it should be the most carefully consumed juice out there because it is contraindicated with so many drugs that jfood believes the FDA will eventually place a lable on grapefruit juice as a warning

                                                                                                          13 Replies
                                                                                                          1. re: jfood

                                                                                                            Actually there is something to be said about getting your vitamins/supplements from whole foods rather than a jar.

                                                                                                            Lots of times it will be more easily absorbed and contain unknown vital nutrients that scientists haven't yet discovered to put in a pill.

                                                                                                            Nature knows best.

                                                                                                            1. re: ipsedixit


                                                                                                              there's a reason they're called "supplements' and not 'replacements.' they should be viewed as more of an 'insurance policy' to fill in the blanks in case you've missed or fallen short on some nutrient in your daily diet.

                                                                                                              single nutrients tend not to be the most effective...the majority of them work synergistically [i.e calcium plus vitamin d], so if you take them alone you don't get the full benefits. plus, certain foods and/or other nutrients can enhance absorption, as is the case with the fat-soluble vitamins [a, d, e & k], so downing a ahndful of pills with a glass of fat free water or juice won't really do much for you.

                                                                                                              then there's the issue that you CAN have too much of a good thing with supplements. certain vitamins & minerals can be toxic at high doses.

                                                                                                              but that's an entirely different thread.

                                                                                                              1. re: ipsedixit

                                                                                                                jfood keeps hearing that the molecule "XYZ" found in a sprig a nature is different or absorbed differently or more effectively that the molecule "XYZ" from the bottle but has never seen in print from a scholarly article.

                                                                                                                Do you have a reference or an article online he can read. always interested learning.


                                                                                                                1. re: jfood

                                                                                                                  jfood...i'd love to give you some references, but it might take me a while. if i can't get them to you before sundown, be sure to look for them after the holiday.

                                                                                                                  1. re: goodhealthgourmet

                                                                                                                    take your time, hittingthe road for the holiday and out til >novey on bagels tomorrow

                                                                                                                    happy holidays

                                                                                                                    1. re: jfood


                                                                                                                      Try this http://www.organicconsumers.org/artic...

                                                                                                                      It references an article from Nature.com (but it's a premium site).

                                                                                                                      Not saying it is definitive, but just more food for thought I suppose ...

                                                                                                                      1. re: ipsedixit

                                                                                                                        thanks ip, but jfood is always skeptical on self-promoting sites. he would love to see real research versus sites like this. for example a few weeks ago on the butter popcorn lung thing, jffod was a skeptic until someone pointed him the a NEJM article on the subject. Not statistically perfect but it was more than the Today Show.

                                                                                                                        Any help always appreciated.

                                                                                                                  2. re: jfood

                                                                                                                    Most of the commerical vitmains are from synthetic origin and are mirror images of the natural, so the body has to convert time to be used by the body. A biochemical problem, that you are not told limits the usefulness of most of the products on the market. The best vitamins and minerals are made from fermented foods and the body can utilize them immediately without the trouble to convert the mirror images. The there is a marked difference in the tissue response in the body.
                                                                                                                    In addition, to the 'fermented food' sourced multiples along with many herbal extracts, glandular extracts and effective amino acids, I eat all fresh foods with the most nutrients available for HEALTHY reasons. It is necessary to avoid processed and refined foods to appear and function at a younger age. Tropical fruits are far more effective and results will be seen in the skin. The same circulation to the skin is supplying the brain, and other organs. SO you have to eat well to be well.

                                                                                                                    1. re: nutrition

                                                                                                                      jfood is not arguing the points but just looking for credible scientific evidence to the results. There is a huge difference between correlation and causation. little jfood is a nutritional fireplug and has taught her dad a lot and looking at her, it works.

                                                                                                                      But jfood is a reasearch dog by nature and likes to read scientific studies that were performed to prove these theorums, other than visully saying her skin is better, and eat well to be well. Not disagreeing just looking for data.

                                                                                                                      And given your handle jfood is hoping you can guide this dog to a bowlful of articles so he can read in hotel rooms over the next few weeks.


                                                                                                                      1. re: jfood

                                                                                                                        hey jf

                                                                                                                        as a nutrition professional and an academic it makes me so happy that you're actively seeking valid data to formulate your own conclusions. so often, people are either all too willing to accept what
                                                                                                                        they're told out of hand without questioning, or quick to refuse to acknowledge that there might be some validity to another opinion.

                                                                                                                        i dug up several articles from the journal of nutrition to get you started. each of them actually touches on a different one of the various issues that we've raised/mentioned throughout this discussion.


                                                                                                                        suggests that antioxidants/bioactive compounds are best acquired through whole food consumption rather than supplements


                                                                                                                        compares effects of different levels of supplementation & dietary intake; my primary interest in this one is the conclusion that lower supplemement levels are better and safer [i've said before that more is not necessarily better, and high-level supplementation can be dangerous with certain nutrients



                                                                                                                        a discussion of how dietary factors affect bioavailability & absorption of carotenoids


                                                                                                                        another one about absorption


                                                                                                                        more support for my theory about the synergistic activity of foods...how adding certain dairy foods to a plant-based diet influences absorption of minerals

                                                                                                                        many more where these came from...you can do your own search on the journal's web site. it's a great resource, and much of the content is free [just click on 'full text' to read online or 'pdf' to download].

                                                                                                                        hope you had an easy fast.

                                                                                                                        happy reading!

                                                                                                                        1. re: goodhealthgourmet

                                                                                                                          this is beautiful. have to download all the pdf's and read at the pool this afternoon. the jfoods are always chatting on what to each with what onthe interaction of fats, proteins, minerals and vitamins and this looks like some great benchmarks.

                                                                                                                          thanks so much.

                                                                                                                          fast was good, break was better, saw a bunch of old friends. hope yours was as well.

                                                                                                                  3. re: ipsedixit

                                                                                                                    Nature knows best , but farmers and supermarkets may not. Soil depletion, pesticides, travel and storage time, oxidation, etc. all play a part. It's a sad thing but I agree with jfood - you really need the stuff from a jar to supplement, provided it's a jar with a good reputation.

                                                                                                                  4. re: jfood

                                                                                                                    "He eats NOTHING for its health benefits only. If it does not taste good, forgetaboutit. "

                                                                                                                    Hear!~ Hear!~Hear!

                                                                                                                    As we must eat to live, we may as well enjoy it.

                                                                                                                  5. Rolling Stone had an article on George Clinton of Funkadelic/Parliament in the 70s. Clinton said he drank a glass of prune juice everyday. Someone had asked him about the stuff being disgusting and a turn-off to the chicks. He replied, "I'd rather loose some p*%%# than be all clogged up with s&*%"

                                                                                                                    1 Reply
                                                                                                                    1. re: Sam Fujisaka

                                                                                                                      I love to think of the Mothership being stocked with cases of prune juice.

                                                                                                                      Goldenseal may be the worst tasting substance known to humanity.I take it when I am getting a cold, thank God they now stuff it into capsules.

                                                                                                                    2. I can't think of anything that I eat solely for the health benefits. I eat a varied diet, supplement with vitamins and stay away from processed foods and soda. I don't run out and buy something because the latest study says it will keep me alive forever because in 6 months there will be another study that contradicts the first or promotes another product.

                                                                                                                      I did, however, make an exception for dark chocolate and red wine. Like my father always says, "Sacrifices have to be made".

                                                                                                                      1. Cruciferous vegetables. Don't like any of them and never have done (unless you count the pickled cauliflower in giardiniera or that salad that's made with broccoli, mayo and cheese!), but I eat them a few times a week.

                                                                                                                        1. Well, probably beet greens count, because I wouldn't bother eating them PURELY out of frugality. But combine all that nutrition with the fact that they come free with tasty, pretty beets, and I end up eating them out of guilt. Bitter, tough, nasty things.

                                                                                                                          Other than that, not much. I like wheat bread a lot, though I probably eat more of it than I would if it had equal nutritional value to white. I definitely put down the chewy white sourdough and pick up the heavy whole wheat loaf with some regularity (and regret). I like most vegetables, and I love fruit probably more than any other type of food. I don't eat a lot of extreme-health-food - not wheatgrass juice or other such. I did deliberately develop a taste for carrot juice by adding it in increasing quantities to orange juice. Now I like it better than orange juice and drink it all the time, which is good - lower in calories than orange juice. I love my morning oatmeal, and I've slowly been lowering the quantity of brown sugar I add to it. I always disliked liver, but I've figured out some ways to prepare that are good, and I'm learning to like it, which I wouldn't have bothered doing if liver weren't very high in iron (I tend to be anemic). So sometimes I guess I gently modify my preferences for the sake of health, but rarely do I consume something I hate outright.

                                                                                                                          13 Replies
                                                                                                                          1. re: curiousbaker

                                                                                                                            My whole family hates liver, but love this stuff. If you have room in your diet for a few extra fat calories, you might give it a try:

                                                                                                                            Soak a pound of chicken livers in a cup of milk for an hour. Drain.

                                                                                                                            Sweat a roughly-chopped onion and a few cloves of garlic in half a stick of butter until the onions are translucent. Increase heat and add the chicken livers, a healthy pinch of salt, and some thyme and bay leaves. Saute until the livers are nearly done, then deglaze with port or brandy.

                                                                                                                            Remove from heat and let things cool until they're comfortable to handle. Toss everything in the food processor and puree, working in another half stick of butter. Mix in any goodies you want (mushrooms, peppercorns, etc.) and pack the puree into one or more containers. If you want to serve it as a pate, line the bottom and sides of the container with plastic wrap, gelatin, clarified butter, or schmaltz so that you can turn it out. If you want to serve it as a terrine, just cover the top with one of the afore-mentioned substances.

                                                                                                                            Refrigerate overnight. Serve with crusty bread and cornichons.

                                                                                                                            1. re: alanbarnes

                                                                                                                              hate to be the voice of dissension here, but adding a stick of butter to the preparation pretty much negates any 'health benefit' you might derive from consuming liver.

                                                                                                                              i'm not saying don't eat it...i loved chopped liver during the holidays as a kid. i just think you're kidding yourself if you believe it's 'healthy.'

                                                                                                                              1. re: goodhealthgourmet

                                                                                                                                Who says butter is unhealthy? Yeah, it packs a real wallop in terms of fat and calories, but that's not to say it shouldn't be consumed. And if you want a low-fat diet, never mind the butter, you shouldn't be eating liver in the first place.

                                                                                                                                1. re: alanbarnes

                                                                                                                                  I don't think goodhealthgourmet was objecting to the butter itself, but to the "stick of" part. That much butter - or oil, or chocolate, or whatever - in one sitting is not good for anyone.

                                                                                                                                  I'm all for real food vs. diet food, but let's not push the pro-butter argument to extremes.

                                                                                                                                  1. re: piccola

                                                                                                                                    But the recipe serves 8 as an appetizer. That's a tablespoon of butter--14 grams of butterfat--per serving. Not diet food by any means, but not of itself unhealthy.

                                                                                                                                    1. re: alanbarnes

                                                                                                                                      Bad news Al. although this sounds wonderful let's look at the numbers and your conclusion.

                                                                                                                                      let's assume you do not use shmaltz for the "rind" and just look at the livers and the butter.

                                                                                                                                      FAT - recommended daily level 60 -75. this has 43 per serving more than half the daily amount.
                                                                                                                                      Cholesterol - recommended daily level 300 mg. this appetizer alone is close to 350 mg. Thats more than 115% of the recommended DAILY level on a couple of crackers.

                                                                                                                                      So to say it's "not of itself unhealthy" is quite an understatement.

                                                                                                                                    2. re: piccola


                                                                                                                                      chicken liver in itself is a very nutritious food. it's chock full of vitamins, minerals, protein...and relatively low in fat. but when you add all that butter, the fat content skyrockets - and it's primarily saturated.

                                                                                                                                      you said the recipe makes eight appetizer servings, so let's look at it mathematically:
                                                                                                                                      - a 2-ounce portion of raw chicken livers contains approximately 64 calories and 2 grams of fat [1 of which is saturated]. so actually, a very healthful nutritional profile to start


                                                                                                                                      - add a tablespoon of butter to that, and [not including any other additions such as onions, other veggies & liquids] your total for one serving now contains 164 calories, 13 grams of fat, and 9 grams of saturated fat.

                                                                                                                                      so not only does the butter increase the calorie count by 256%, the fat content by 650% and the saturated fat by 900%, you've also now consumed about half your maximum recommended saturated fat for the day, and between one quarter and one fifth of the recommended total fat for the day [based on a 2,000 calorie diet]...all for perhaps a quarter-cup of food.

                                                                                                                                      and that's assuming someone only eats one serving, which, as we all know, is rarely the case.

                                                                                                                                      as i said earlier, i'm not knocking the dish. it's delicious! just don't call it health food.

                                                                                                                                      1. re: goodhealthgourmet


                                                                                                                                        jfood loves chick livers but what about the >300mg of cholesterol in the 2oz of them w/o any butter? Probably need 40mg of Lipitor to counterbalance at the end of the day.

                                                                                                                                        1. re: goodhealthgourmet

                                                                                                                                          So, in other words, a portion of this stuff can only be part of a healthy diet if you have some fat calories available in your nutritional budget. Which is precicely the caveat that preceded the recipe in my original post. Which characterized the dish, not as health food, but as a way to make liver tastier.

                                                                                                                                          1. re: alanbarnes

                                                                                                                                            ahhh..herein lies the problem [i think]...

                                                                                                                                            the op asked about things we eat solely for their health benefits...not for suggestions on how to make 'healthy' ingredients more palatable.

                                                                                                                                            but as is typically the case with us chowhounds, we hijacked the thread and ran off in a different direction :)

                                                                                                                                            all i know is that this discussion now has me craving chopped liver!

                                                                                                                                            1. re: goodhealthgourmet

                                                                                                                                              You're right. I was responding to curiousbaker's comment that s/he was trying to learn to like liver because s/he's anemic. And awaaaaaay we go!

                                                                                                                                  2. re: alanbarnes

                                                                                                                                    this is really similar to the recipe i use for "pate" only i use maybe 3 tbs butter at the start and process to consistency with ff evap milk. (you could whip cream and fold in i/o evap milk but that's higher fat and i'm lazy) the end result is not as firm standing as the heavy butter recipes so you need to stop the processor to keep checking texture. if you add more evap milk it can get dip like too.

                                                                                                                                  3. re: curiousbaker

                                                                                                                                    Wow, I love beet greens! We use them in pasta, with some white beans, pine nuts, chopped sun-dried tomatoes, garlic, and Parmesan. You could mix 1/2 with spinach too, to lessen the bitter flavor.

                                                                                                                                  4. My husband keeps making me smoothies with Whey Protein- he swears that they are good for me but I really can't stand the smell and taste of the whey. I did draw the line on him adding spirulina (hawaiian algae?). Looks and smell way too weird for me!

                                                                                                                                    1. Perhaps try the 'Odorless Garlic dietary suppliment'.

                                                                                                                                      1. I love Barilla whole wheat pasta, they make all sorts/shapes (no I don't work for them). Tastes identical to most people and is a lot better for your body than white pasta (flax, vitamins, fiber etc). I'm also hooked on Silk soy milk in the red carton, organic, but not too big on the sugar free kind. I think regular milk tastes funny now! If it doesn't taste good, I probably won't do it for health reasons only.

                                                                                                                                        But since I started cooking in the last couple years I've been eating healthier in general compared to all the fast food/restaurant food I used to eat with all the salt and fat. I use more veggies and can control what goes in my belly rather than what someone else thinks should be there!

                                                                                                                                        1. I eat most vegetables because they're "good for me." Especially kale. I don't hate vegetables, but if all foods were equally nutritious, I'd be eating a lot more pepperoni and a lot less dark leafy greens and salmon.

                                                                                                                                          1. A cheeseburger.

                                                                                                                                            As an almost-vegetarian for a while, I gave up all red meat. I've stopped with that nonsense, but still very rarely eat red meat.
                                                                                                                                            However, my dr told me I do have a tendency to run iron-deficient. I now try to eat lots of dark green vegetables and nuts, but occasionally, I'll just get an overwhelming Craving for a cheeseburger.
                                                                                                                                            I assume this is my body telling me I need more iron, and who am I to deny my health?

                                                                                                                                            2 Replies
                                                                                                                                            1. re: hyacinthgirl

                                                                                                                                              Iron, calcium. micro-nutrients, potassium, protein, ...

                                                                                                                                            2. Fish Oil capsules and nibbles of dried ginseng root. Does that count as "food"? What can I say...my gramma makes me do it, and she is going on 92 and still as spry as ever. Hard stuff to choke down, but my dog loves the fish oil too.

                                                                                                                                              6 Replies
                                                                                                                                              1. re: mle1111

                                                                                                                                                Do you get... fish burps?

                                                                                                                                                I've shared the details of my piscine belching with others who take the capsules, but no one else seems to (or will admit to) having this side effect. It's not pleasant, especially for someone who only likes mild fish. Fish burps are like unwelcome manifestations of salmon roe exploding in your mouth about 1-2 hours after taking a fish pill. I've had to give forgo the omega-3. Maybe I'll try flax seeds.

                                                                                                                                                1. re: Agent Orange

                                                                                                                                                  AO, have you tried Coromega packets or Nordic Naturals soft gels? neither product is cheap, but you won't get fish burps from them (and you can get a free sample from the Coromega website)...


                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Agent Orange

                                                                                                                                                    Ao, I have not had fish burps since I switched to the capsule form (from Trader Joe's)vs the straight out of the bottle stuff. Slightly better, but still have to repress shudders everytime it goes down.
                                                                                                                                                    Now if it only did taste like salmon roe, i'd be good to go. Can't get enough of THAT stuff!

                                                                                                                                                    1. re: mle1111

                                                                                                                                                      Perhaps salmon roe was too kind. Thanks all for the burp-free alternatives; I'll be looking for then at the store (no TJ's here though.)

                                                                                                                                                      1. re: Agent Orange

                                                                                                                                                        if price is a concern, check some of the online supplement/vitamin discounters for the products i suggested, or if you have a location of Vitamin Shoppe near you, buy from them. their prices aren't always the best, but their return policy is as good as the one at Trader Joe's...if you don't like the product, you can return it. just be sure to hang on to your receipt!

                                                                                                                                                  2. re: mle1111

                                                                                                                                                    I started taking the Barlean's fish oil 'smoothie' in lemon and have not had a problem. Tastes like lemon meringue pie to me and-the best part- no burps! There are 2 flax varieties as well, I think strawberry banana and berry. I have added it to cottage cheese and oatmeal too.

                                                                                                                                                  3. I put flax oil and chia seeds in my breakfast smoothies (banana, frozen fruit, slivered almonds, chilled green tea, soy milk and juice). I wouldn't include those ingredients if my doctor hadn't recommended it.

                                                                                                                                                    I generally only eat eggs because I feel like I need more protein in my vegetarian diet. I try to cook with beans, lentils and high-protein grains regularly, but when I haven't planned ahead dinner is often a vegetable frittata.

                                                                                                                                                    1. I wouldn't want to sound sexist, but I do notice a statistically significant difference between 'us' and those health-freak women.

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                                                                                                                                                      1. re: Paulustrious

                                                                                                                                                        when you say "us," with whom are you categorizing yourself? i hope not Chowhounds in general...because i'm both a Chowhound AND a health nut...they're not mutually exclusive.

                                                                                                                                                        i'd never force myself to choke down ANYTHING just because it's supposedly "good for me." i just happen to be fortunate enough to actually enjoy eating pretty much every nutritious food on the planet :)

                                                                                                                                                        1. re: goodhealthgourmet

                                                                                                                                                          I did say "statistically significant" .

                                                                                                                                                          Abd it was tongue-in-cheek.

                                                                                                                                                      2. I'm with whoever it was said about the juices, I used to drink them years ago, but now the only reason I ever buy an OJ or grapefruit juice is if i'm trying to guzzle down some extra vitamin C while fluish. I can't say I don't enjoy them though. Same goes for the ginger I eat if i have an upset stomach.

                                                                                                                                                        For a little while I was forcing myself to drink milk because I knew it was good for me, but white milk is not for me. Chocolate milk or soymilk is another story, glug glug glug. :)

                                                                                                                                                        Everything I eat I enjoy. I may incorporate a few new things into my diet because I hear they're good for this or that, but only if I actually enjoy eating them.

                                                                                                                                                        I have been meat-free for over ten years now and I always said that the only thing that would ever get me to eat it "medicinally" for lack of a better word, was if I was pregnant and the doc told me I absolutely needed it for whatever reason, and even then i'd say i'd get a second opinion.

                                                                                                                                                        I know a couple of people right now who seem to be eating medicinally, and one eats the same things just about every day. Honestly, if I hear the word antioxidants one more time......

                                                                                                                                                        1. Great question. Here are the things I could barely swallow, but forced it anyway because they were supposed to cure. I'm a pretty good cook, so I can usually make healthy foods fairly delicious...however the following list of foul potions, tonics and 'health foods' were no match for my culinary disguises

                                                                                                                                                          Floradix herbal tonic when I was anemic due to veganism, nasty iron-rich black liquid
                                                                                                                                                          Ayurvedic tonic in India when ill with ameobic disentary
                                                                                                                                                          Fiber drinks when doing digestive cleanses after amoebic disentary
                                                                                                                                                          Plain yogurt, when I had gestational diabetes I ate it unsweetened, even with bananas and nuts the stuff just tastes SOUR
                                                                                                                                                          Kefir, again sour without any redeeming flavour, or fat or texture
                                                                                                                                                          Buckley's cough syrup. OMG that stuff is EVIL, yet works like a charm
                                                                                                                                                          Tempeh...I've tried it so many ways and gag, gag, gag...its made of rotten mouldy soy beans, no matter how you sauce it

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                                                                                                                                                          1. re: jnine

                                                                                                                                                            forgot to add unsweetened cranberry juice for bladder/kidney infections. It is the kind of unpalatability that makes you gag even if you plug your nose, and gulp it a fast as you can. I heartily agree that cranberry pills are wonderful.

                                                                                                                                                            1. re: jnine

                                                                                                                                                              a friend once described unsweetened cranberry as "tasting like unwashed ass", in a purely metaphorical sense, of course. but still apt.

                                                                                                                                                            2. re: jnine

                                                                                                                                                              "Fiber drinks when doing digestive cleanses after amoebic disentary"????

                                                                                                                                                              Why would you want more fiber and "cleanses" after having disentary????

                                                                                                                                                            3. Wow, there is a lot of fibre issue here.

                                                                                                                                                              In the winter I always add the following immune booster ingredients to my soups: organic freshly grated ginger, organic freshly grated tumeric, organic garlic and organic onions. I've now started to add organic cayenne ground pepper bought from the market. I've also started taking oil of oregano, yuck. I've been eating oatmeal made with water and added cinnamon and water for my cholesterol and poor circulation.

                                                                                                                                                              I've reduced my flax seed consumption and taking omega pills (something to do with better conversion of DHEA) but I still grind them fresh for baked goods and smoothies.

                                                                                                                                                              Carrots, yuck. I can only eat them when they are cooked with other foods that can mask the taste.

                                                                                                                                                              If health was not an issue, i would eat animal fat, butter, white flour and cream!

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                                                                                                                                                              1. re: maxmillan

                                                                                                                                                                Max, lucky you on the carrots...did you know that your body absorbs more nutrients from cooked carrots than raw? It's true. I've started adding fresh ginger to my green tea in the afternoons...love it that way!

                                                                                                                                                              2. The only thing I eat strictly for it's purposed health benefits are vitamins and supplements. Can't think of any food items I would eat just because it's good for you that I wouldn't eat otherwise.

                                                                                                                                                                1. I added flax seeds to my diet a couple of years back, grinding whole seeds to put in smoothies or oatmeal strictly for health benefits. About six months ago I discovered an Ethiopian flax seed drink that I actually enjoy.

                                                                                                                                                                  Toast whole flax seeds in a pan until fragrant. Grind into a powder and soak in water. Add honey to sweeten and you have a tasty healthy beverage. The recipe called for straining out the solids but I stir it up and drink the whole thing.

                                                                                                                                                                  Here is the recipe which obviously I do not follow to a T.

                                                                                                                                                                  1. I add chia seeds to whole oats with cinnamon when I have time to make it. Otherwise, I just put two Tablespoons of chia seeds in about a 1/4 cup of water with a splash of fruit juice, and just slurp it down.

                                                                                                                                                                    1. Dark chocolate-made the switch from milk to dark after adapting a low sugar/carb lifestyle. A little bit goes a long way.

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                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: MNLisaB

                                                                                                                                                                        I agree! I buy good dark chocolate, usually little squares, that are 40 calories or so each. Two of those after dinner and I feel sated and spoiled.
                                                                                                                                                                        I also picked up dark chocolate covered pomegranite-filled bites that Costco carries. They are really delicious.

                                                                                                                                                                      2. Fresh Grapefruit has other health benefits regarding cancer other then the Vit C, and better then Orange juice, especially the processed kind. Less sugar, which the cancer cells love and multiply wildly! Best to stay away from all white processed foods to be healthy.
                                                                                                                                                                        Did you know that Cancer is #1 in San Diego over Heart Disease of all other major cities? But Cancer is surpassing Heart Disease as the leading cause of illness, everywhere!

                                                                                                                                                                        1. I used to choke down green tea for its health benefits until I discovered genmaicha - a green / roasted brown rice tea that I think is delicious.

                                                                                                                                                                          2 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: woodleyparkhound

                                                                                                                                                                            There is delicious green tea out there, but it's not the cheapest, and you probably won't find it in teabags. Get it loose from a tea specialty place, and in season (it goes stale fast). Then *don't* use boiling water; that makes it bitter and ruins the delicate flavors.

                                                                                                                                                                            That's a good idea about genmaicha too.

                                                                                                                                                                            I drink green tea almost every day, several cups. I don't know if it's doing anything good for me, but I like it anyway, as I'm a tea fanatic!

                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: woodleyparkhound

                                                                                                                                                                              i love genmaicha! but i also love green and black tea. just don't give me anything with fruit, chamomile or bergamot.

                                                                                                                                                                              if you prefer lighter, sweeter, more floral teas, try white tea. loose is always best, but as far as bagged goes, Uncle Lee's is actually pretty good.

                                                                                                                                                                            2. I am like a child around food. I'll try anything once, but I tend to stick mostly to food I enjoy eating. Lucky for me, my taste buds tend to favor healthier food in general. The notable exception is dark chocolate. I am a sucker for dark chocolate.

                                                                                                                                                                              1. I have to admit I'm still waiting to really LIKE the sardines I eat once a week. And green tea sort of bores me...

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