Naturopaths will often look to the gut when determining the origin of many types of disease. Prebiotics by definition is foods or ingredients that selectively promote the growth or activity of beneficial microorganisms (gut bacteria), and are different to the bacteria themselves called probiotics. Prebiotic foods in this recipe include; onion, garlic, asparagus, chickpeas and the vegetables in general. Promoting the growth of beneficial intestinal bacteria has flow-on effects to improve digestive function, the immune system, mental health, skin health and almost every aspect of health.
Cooking time: 30 minutes | Serves: 4
- 1 red onion sliced
- 2 small cloves of garlic finely chopped
- 1 Tb extra virgin olive oil
- 1 tin of organic chickpeas (drained)
- 1 tin of organic tinned coconut milk
- 2-3 Tb of natural smooth peanut butter
- 2-3 Tb of organic tamari sauce (gluten-free)
- 1-2 pinches of dried chilli flakes
- 1/2 broccoli chopped up into florets
- 1 bunch of asparagus chopped
- 1 Tb sesame seeds
- Fresh Chilli
- Purple cabbage sliced to serve
- Handful of peanuts
- ½ cauliflower cut up into pieces
- 1 extra virgin olive oil
- ½ tsp turmeric powder
- Salt to taste
- Prepare curry ingredients as described above.
- Sautee onion and garlic in a pot with olive oil until lightly cooked.
- Add asparagus and cook further until lightly cooked.
- Add chickpeas and coconut milk and bring to a gentle simmer.
- Add peanut butter, tamari sauce and chilli flakes and mix well.
- Add the broccoli florets and leave on a gentle simmer whilst you make the cauliflower rice.
- To make the cauliflower rice, add the cauliflower pieces to a food processor and blitz until evenly shredded but not too fine.
- In a pan with olive oil, add the cauliflower and cook gently for 10 minutes until it is cooked through, stirring frequently.
- Season with salt and add the turmeric powder. Stir well until the turmeric is evenly combined.
- Serve the rice and curry components in bowls and garnish with sesame seeds, coriander, fresh chilli, red cabbage and peanuts.
It is important with each meal you eat to ensure that it is balanced. To do this, each meal should be composed of at least 50% vegetables, protein and good fats.
Protein is important for ensuring satiety by a gradual rise in blood sugar levels, rather than an immediate spike followed by a rapid decrease. To ensure intake of the 9 essential amino acids, which are always found in any animal protein known as complete proteins, or through incomplete proteins by combining of any 2 of the following: whole grains and seeds, legumes and/or nuts. This recipe has the essential amino acids by combining chickpeas and peanuts with sesame seeds.
As naturopaths, we believe that disease begins in the gut. Prebiotics by definition is foods or ingredients that selectively promote the growth or activity of beneficial microorganisms (gut bacteria), and are different to the bacteria themselves called probiotics. Prebiotic foods in this recipe include; onion, garlic, asparagus, chickpeas and the vegetables in general. Promoting the growth of beneficial intestinal bacteria has flow-on effects to improve digestive function, the immune system, mental health, skin health and almost every aspect of health.
Foods rich in polyphenols also enhance the growth of beneficial bacteria. Polyphenols are compounds found in natural foods rich in colour, particularly reds and purple foods. Polyphenol-rich foods in this recipe include red cabbage and red onion. Polyphenols are anti-oxidant and anti-inflammatory too!
Whilst naturopaths use herbal medicine in various different forms, one easy way to incorporate herbal medicine is through cooking with a variety of herbs and spices. Some examples include;
- Garlic: has potent antimicrobial properties, is an immune stimulant and has cholesterol and blood pressure lowering actions too!
- Chilli: is a circulatory stimulant, antioxidant, general tonic, antiseptic and has carminative properties in the digestive system.
- Coriander: has blood sugar regulation properties, is anti-spasmodic, decreases blood pressure, helps treat UTI’s and is anti-inflammatory.
- Turmeric: is widely known these days for curcumin and its anti-inflammatory properties. Synergistically, whole turmeric is also anti-inflammatory, anti-oxidant, lowers blood lipids and improves bile production.
Modifications: animal protein such as chicken can be added in too. Other vegetarian options include tempeh or tofu.
Chelsey is a senior Naturopathy student at Endeavour College Perth campus. Lover of all things herbs, nutrition, sausage dogs, the ocean & coffee. Chelsey is one-half of the @sugarfreesisters.
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