Terre Pruitt's Blog

In the realm of health, wellness, fitness, and the like, or whatever inspires me.

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Posts Tagged ‘curry’

A Possible Help For Alzheimer’s

Posted by terrepruitt on July 12, 2014

I recently came across some information I thought was interesting.  I had heard it before, in fact I mentioned it in my post Turmeric – Flavor With Benefits, but this time I decided to look into a bit to see what is being said.  One of the compounds found in turmeric is curcumin.  Turmeric is a product of a ground root of the Curcuma longa plant.  It is a relative of ginger.  The curcumin is what gives turmeric it’s yellow color.  So basically it is the stuff in turmeric that stains everything it touches.  While in the middle of typing this I needed to make dinner.  I used some turmeric.  This spice has been used in other cultures as a spice to flavor foods, and a medicinal spice.  It has been used as a dye.  It is a subject of study and research as it is thought to have anti-oxidant and anti-inflammatory properties.  There is information that has been published regarding using curcumin as a possible prevention and treatment for Alzheimer’s.  The National Center for Biotechnology Information,  U.S. National Library of Medicine’s website has information regarding a paper disclosing such information.  The UCLA Alzheimer Translation Center website also has information regarding how it might help prevent Alzheimer’s.

Alzheimer’s is thought to begin with inflammation.  So, as I have stated often in my post, I believe that chronic inflammation in the body is a disease catalyst.  It is as if the body is so busy fighting the inflammation, other things go wrong.  Chronic inflammation is being viewed as a serious health problem.  So again, as I have stated before, things, foods, that can reduce inflammation can be good to add to our diets.

The NCBI article states that the idea that curcumin might help with Alzheimer’s comes from the fact that it is less common in India where they eat a lot of food with curry with turmeric.  This idea was supported by a study in which macrophages (A type of white blood cell that ingests foreign material) was treated with curcumin.  The white blood cells treated with the curcumin were able to clear the type of plague that is thought to contribute to Alzheimer’s.  The article also indicates that since curcumin can pass through the blood brain barrier it can help at the neurological level.  Also, neurotoxicity caused by cadmium and lead was prevented.  Additionally, curcumin might help lower cholesterol.

The bioavailability of the curcumin is not very high.  So eating enough and getting enough could be an issue . . . especially at this point there might not be enough information to know what amount “enough” is.

Another post on The National Center for Biotechnology Information,  U.S. National Library of Medicine’s website claims that three patients with Alzheimer’s showed significant signs of behavioral and psychological improvement after being treated with turmeric powder capsules.  A change was seen after just 12 weeks, but a large improvement of recognizing family members was seen after a year.

There is always risks with anything if one is to use it as a treatment for a specific condition, so before you go out and purchase curcumin capsules please do some research and seek professional advice.  I do think that my adding it to my food would not be a problem.  I know in my post about turmeric I said I would, but I really dislike that it turns my dishes yellow.  But I really think the possible benefits outweigh that.  I prefer to try to use food, herbs, spices, and movement to provide nutrition and health benefits so that I can keep it healthy and hopefully not need medication.

Do you like curry dishes?  What type of curry dishes do you make?  What do you add turmeric to?  Do you have a trick to keeping it from turning things yellow?

Posted in Misc | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 6 Comments »

Special Cooking On Special Occasions

Posted by terrepruitt on February 19, 2013

My husband claims he can only cook three meals.  The three things do not include him cooking meat and veggies on the grill.  The meals that he will cook are beef stroganoff, taco salad, and curry.  On special occasions I will request that he make dinner.  When I first met him I told him that I would not cook dinner every night.  And if I were still working a 40+ hour a week job OUTSIDE of the home, I probably would not.  But as my current 40+ hour a week job has me at home more often than not, I have been cooking almost every night.  But you know how I love leftovers so I do take advantage of that when I can.  For Valentine’s Day, Birthdays, and wedding anniversaries I usually request that he cook.  Most often I prefer that rather than going out.  The past couple of times that he has cooked I have asked for curry.  To me I only know curry the way he cooks it and serves it.  He buys beef and cooks it with curry seasonings.  He makes rice and we put the meat over that.  The best part is all the toppings.  And one of the reasons I like when HE makes it is I don’t have to chop up all the toppings.

For our curries we use raisins, peanuts, sunflower seeds, carrots, bell peppers, brocoli, mango chutney, cucumbers, onions, and coconut.  I don’t put peanuts or coconut on mine, but he puts it on his.  On the plate pictured I didn’t put onions, but on the next night’s plate I did. The meat was cooked with onions so you still might see some in the photo, but not the raw ones.

Dance Exercise, Nia, Nia at the City of San Jose, Nia classes in the South Bay, Nia Teacher, Nia Class, San Jose Nia, Nia San Jose, Nia workout, Nia, ZumbaThe rice and the meat are hot (temperature) while the vegetables are raw.  I love to add a ton of vegetables to my plate.  It is so interesting because every bite is different.  You never get the same thing.  I like the veggies chopped up really small so that I can get a bite with rice, meat, and a bunch of veggies in my mouth.  If the veggies are too big then you just end up with rice, meat, and ONE veggie and that makes it seem like a regular meal, not a curry dish.

I don’t know how other curry is served but that is how my husband does it.  Also, the poor guy . . . he LOVES hot stuff, especially curry, but — if you have read a couple of my posts about food, you know I cannot tolerate spicy heat at all.  So my hubby makes our curry meat totally mild.  There is NO HEAT AT ALL.  But the flavor is really good.  I feel bad that he does not get to experience the spicy heat.  Maybe we can make up a separate dish of HOT curry sauce and he can put that on his curries.

Another thing I love about curry is that there is usually enough for at least one more meal.  If you’ve read a couple of my posts about food, you know I love to have leftovers so I can alleviate at least one night of cooking a full meal.

I really like curry.  Maybe I should request it more often.  Not just on special occasions.  Then on a special occasion I can request of his other specialty meals.  🙂

Do you like curry?  Is this how you eat your curry with a lot of different toppings piled on it?  

Posted in Food | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments »

Turmeric – Flavor With Benefits

Posted by terrepruitt on April 12, 2012

When I wrote the post regarding anti-inflammatory foods, I decided to buy some Turmeric.  At the time I was not able to claim knowing what it tasted like.  I figured since it was used a lot in curries I would be ok with it.  I thought that it would be a good thing to add to our diet.  Since there are so many things that work as an inflammatory, I am always trying to add anti-inflammatory foods and ingredients into our diet.  I wasn’t sure exactly how to use it, but I was wanting to give it a go.  Turmeric has been used in food and as medicine for centuries.  Seems like the West is doing a lot of research to see what health benefits it has.

According to the University of Maryland Medical Center:  “Turmeric has been used in both Ayurvedic and Chinese medicine as an anti-inflammatory, to treat digestive and liver problems, skin diseases, and wounds.  Curcumin is also a powerful antioxidant.”

Remember Curcumin is the phytochemcial that give turmeric its color.

And Eat This! has a list of 20 Health Benefits contributed to Turmeric including;

-When combined with cauliflower, it has shown to prevent prostate cancer and stop the growth of existing prostate cancer.

-Has shown promise in slowing the progression of multiple sclerosis in mice.

-May aid in fat metabolism and help in weight management.

Well, I’ve had it for a while now and I really like the flavor.  I’ve added it to soups, to veggies, and to meat.  You know my standard ground turkey and whatever veggies I have?  Well, it really makes that taste wonderful.  I had cooked broccoli, mushrooms, and ground turkey for dinner a few nights ago, today I decided to have the leftovers in a tortilla.  Since we have a few cucumbers I decided to use some up by slicing it really thin and putting it in the tortilla with the meat and a bit of parmesan cheese.  WOW!  The turmeric and the cucumbers were a party-in-my-mouth flavor.  It was really good.  So now I am going to serve cucumbers with my turmeric ground turkey.  Many people can describe flavors, I can sometimes, but I cannot describe the flavor or turmeric.  I would say that it is somewhat mellow so it won’t necessary overpower what you are using it with.  It is not hot or bitter.  I think it can be used with anything savory.     
 
Dance Exercies, Nia, Nia Campbell, Campbell Nia, Nia classes in Campbell, evening Nia, Nia Teacher, Nia Class, San Jose Nia, Nia San Jose, Nia workout, Nia,Wiki says “it has a distinctly earthy, slightly bitter, slightly hot peppery flavor and a mustardy smell” but I don’t agree.  Maybe I will give it the mustardy smell, but not off the top of my head.

But there is a problem with turmeric.  It dyes everything yellow!  I now have several bowls and utensils dyed yellow because I used them to stir, serve, or store something with turmeric in it.  It is just as bad as tomato sauce when it comes to dying things!

I am familiar with turmeric in its powdered form, but it is a root like ginger, so if you get it in root form you can use it just as you would ginger.  You could chop it, grate it, cut it up . . . the same as ginger. 

If you like the flavor it seems like a great thing to add to just about everything.   Since it is touted as an anti-inflammatory, an antioxidant, help in the treatment of  inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), helps treat the symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis, improves liver function, prevents some cancers, lowers cholesterol, helps treat and prevent Alzheimer’s, reduces risk of childhood Leukemia among other things — why not add it to things?

Do you cook with Turmeric?  If so what do you add it to?

Posted in Food | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments »