New Vegetarian and Vegan Snacks

Satisfied Snacks, a new-to-market snack food company, is debuting its first product called Roughs.

The company says Roughs takes the healthy ingredients of a salad and turns it into a light crispy wafer. It contains no potato, corn, wheat, rice, oil or added sugar and the snacks are dried not fried.

The range includes: Beetroot and Goat’s Cheese, Tomato and Feta, Red Pepper and Walnut (vegan) and Carrot and Kimchi (vegan). All are handmade in the production kitchen in the UK.

Founder and chief executive of Satisfied Snacks, Heather Daniell, said: “Driven by the lack of healthy and tasty snack options I had to choose from – I created a solution which is delicious, convenient to eat on the go, packed full of healthy and natural ingredients and doesn’t make any compromises.”

Source: Talking Retail

Artichokes with Beans and Almonds


2 cups shelled broad (fava) beans
4 large globe artichokes
1/2 cup olive oil
juice of 1 lemon
2 tsp sugar
3/4 cup blanched almonds
1 small bunch of fresh dill, chopped
2 tomatoes, skinned, seeded and diced
sea salt


  1. Put the beans in a pan of water and bring to the boil. Lower the heat, then simmer for 10-15 minutes or until tender. Drain and refresh under cold running water, then peel off the skins.
  2. Prepare the artichokes. Cut off the stalks and pull off all the leaves. Dig out the hairy choke from the middle using a teaspoon, then cut away any hard bits with a small sharp knife and trim into a neat cup shape. Rub the cup-shaped bases – called bottoms -with a mixture of lemon juice and salt to prevent them from discolouring.
  3. Place the prepared artichokes in a large, heavy pan. Mix together the olive oil, lemon juice and 1/4 cup water and pour the mixture over the artichokes.
  4. Cover the pan with a tight-fitting lid and bring to a simmer. Cook the artichokes in the lemon juice and olive oil mixture gently for about 20 minutes.
  5. Add the sugar, prepared broad beans and blanched almonds to the pan. Cover again with the lid and continue to simmer gently for a further 10 minutes, or until the artichokes are tender.
  6. Toss half the chopped dill into the pan and season with sea salt. Mix all the ingredients together, then turn off the heat. Leave the artichokes to cool in the pan.
  7. Lift the artichokes out of the pan and place them hollow-side up in a large serving dish. Mix the diced tomatoes with the beans and almonds in the pan.
  8. Spoon the bean and vegetable mixture into the middle of the artichokes and all around them. Garnish with the remaining dill. Leave to cool to room temperature, then serve.

Cook’s Tip

Fresh globe artichokes should be treated the same as a bunch of fresh flowers. As soon as you get them home, place them in a jug (pitcher) of water until you are ready to use them.

Makes 4 servings.

Source: Vegan Cooking

What’s for Lunch?

Vegan Set Lunch and Sweets at Ina Living in Toyko, Japan

Today’s Lunch Menu

Today’s Sweet

Healthy Plant-based Diet (but Not Plant-based Junk Food) May Protect Kidneys

Lisa Rapaport wrote . . . . . . . . .

While a healthy-plant based diet is tied to a lower risk of kidney disease, people who fill their plates with starchy, sugary vegetarian fare may actually increase their risk of kidney damage, a new study suggests.

Researchers examined data on eating habits and kidney function for 14,686 middle-aged adults, following half of them for at least 24 years. Overall, 4,343 participants developed chronic kidney disease.

People who most closely adhered to a diet of healthy plant-based foods were 14 percent less likely to develop kidney disease than individuals who rarely ate these foods, the study found.

At the same time, participants who consumed the greatest amount of unhealthy vegetarian foods were 11 percent more likely to develop kidney disease than people who ate the smallest amounts of these foods.

“Relatively higher intakes of healthful plant foods and relatively lower intakes of less healthful plant foods and animal foods are associated with favorable kidney outcomes,” said senior study author Casey Rebholz of the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health in Baltimore.

“We believe that healthful plant foods played an important role because higher consumption of healthful plant foods were associated with a lower risk of kidney disease and slower decline in kidney function when the consumption of less healthful plant foods and animal foods were held constant,” Rebholz said by email.

A healthy plant-based diet includes whole grain foods; fruits like apples, pears, and oranges; veggies like dark, leafy greens, sweet potatoes, and broccoli; nuts and natural peanut butter; and legumes like string beans and lentils.

Study participants who had the healthiest plant-based diets consumed an average of nine to ten servings a day of these foods. These individuals were more likely to be women, white, older, high school graduates, and physically active.

An unhealthy plant-based diet may limit meat but load up on potatoes. This type of diet might also include juice instead of whole fruit, sodas and sugary drinks, and lots of candy, cake and chocolate.

Participants who had the least healthy plant-based diets consumed an average of seven servings a day of these foods. They were more likely to be men, younger, sedentary, and drink more alcohol.

The association between plant-based diets and chronic kidney risk was especially pronounced for people with a normal weight at the start of the study, researchers report in the Clinical Journal of the American Society of Nephrology.

The study wasn’t a controlled experiment designed to prove that certain eating patterns directly contribute to kidney disease.

One limitation of the study is that researchers relied on participants to accurately recall what they ate and drank, which can lead to measurement errors, the study authors note. Researchers also may not have had a complete picture of long-term eating habits.

Still, it’s possible eating more fruits and vegetables may make it easier for the kidneys to rid the body of toxins, said Dr. Michal Melamed of Albert Einstein College of Medicine and Montefiore Medical Center in Bronx, New York. Fruits and vegetables have less acid, putting less demand on the kidneys than meats which have a lot of acid.

“It could also be that the people who eat more fruits and vegetables also do other things, such as exercise more, get more sleep, or in general have a healthier lifestyle and that is the reason why this association is seen,” Melamed, who wasn’t involved in the study, said by email. “In general, multiple studies have shown that eating a lot of processed meats and red meats is probably not good for people, not just for their kidney health but also for the heart.”

Source: Reuters

Morning Exercise Kick-Starts Seniors’ Brains

Want a quick brain boost? A morning session of exercise and short walks throughout the day provide a number of brain benefits for older adults, a new study says.

The findings show that people should avoid uninterrupted sitting to maintain good mental function throughout the day. The study also indicates that moderate-intensity exercise such as brisk walking should be encouraged to maintain brain health, according to researcher Michael Wheeler.

“Relatively simple changes to your daily routine could have a significant benefit to your cognitive health. [The study] also reveals that one day we may be able to do specific types of exercise to enhance specific cognitive skills such as memory or learning,” Wheeler added. He’s a doctoral student at the University of Western Australia’s Heart and Diabetes Institute.

The study included more than 65 men and women, aged 55 to 80, in Australia.

The researchers examined how moderate-intensity exercise on a treadmill in the morning with and without 3-minute walking breaks during an 8-hour day of extended sitting affected different kinds of mental function.

Decision-making throughout the day was improved when the participants did the morning exercise session, compared with uninterrupted sitting, according to the study.

It also found that the morning bout of exercise combined with a number of short light-intensity walking breaks throughout the day led to improvements in short-term memory, compared with uninterrupted sitting.

The findings show that different types of physical activity can improve specific areas of mental function, according to the study.

A key player in the exercise-linked brain benefits is a protein called brain-derived neurotropic growth factor, which is important in the survival and growth of information-transmitting neurons in the brain, the researchers said.

They found that levels of this protein were elevated when participants did either just the morning exercise or the morning exercise and short walking breaks throughout the day, compared with prolonged sitting.

“With an aging population which is looking to live healthier for longer, these studies are critical to people enjoying a productive and satisfying quality of life,” Wheeler said in a Baker news release.

The study was published in the British Journal of Sports Medicine.

Source: HealthDay

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