Tuesday, February 28, 2012

(Not) Pumping Iron

When Kitty first visited her specialist, he prescribed iron in response to her blood test results.  When the supplements didn't raise her numbers significantly, and her doctor said that she would probably have to be given iron by IV, I decided to try to improve her iron levels through diet in addition to the supplements.  This article from the Office of Dietary Supplements at the National Institute for Health came in handy.  It includes separate tables for sources of heme iron (comes from hemoglobin, a protein in red blood cells, and is readily available to the body) and non-heme iron (comes from plants, and is not absorbed as well), and it gives suggestions to improve iron absorption.

Here are some iron-rich foods we enjoy:
11 mg./serving - Chicken Livers - fry them up in butter or olive oil
5.7 mg./serving -  Canned Oysters - try the smoked ones from Trader Joe's with a salad
5.2 mg./serving - Beef Liver - we like it cooked up with onions
6.6 mg./serving - Lentils - make a hearty soup or serve with  Spicy Tunisian Sauce (diced tomatoes, olive oil, cumin, red pepper flakes, fresh crushed garlic, chopped parsley, and salt)


Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Roasted Winter Vegetables

Here is one of our favorite cold-weather dishes.  It is warm, satisfying, and SCD-friendly:

Roasted Winter Vegetables

1.  Preheat oven to 400-425 degrees Farenheit

2.  Fill a roasting pan or oven-proof dish with any combination of the following fresh vegetables:
Acorn squash, seeded and cut into 2 in. chunks
Beets, peeled and cut into 1-2 in. chunks
Brussel sprouts
Butternut squash, peeled and cut into 1-2 in. chunks (you can use a regular vegetable peeler for this)
Carrots, peeled and cut into chunks
Garlic cloves (unpeeled), or toss in an entire head with the end trimmed
Parsnips, peeled and cut into chunks
Turnips, peeled and cut into chunks

3.  Drizzle with plenty of extra-virgin olive oil and toss with fresh rosemary (if you have any on hand).  Add sea salt and black pepper to taste.

4.  Bake for 30 minutes

5.  Take out of the oven and toss veggies.  Return to the oven for another 30 minutes, or until fork-tender

This goes well with lentils and a green salad.  Enjoy!

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Fighting Inflammation

As part of our effort to lower inflammation marked by CRP and Sed rates, we followed some recommendations from Dr. Art Ayers, who holds a PhD in Molecular, Cellular and Developmental Biology (U. Colo. Boulder), has done postdoctoral research in Sweden and the U.S., and has been a faculty member of several institutions of higher learning (including Harvard University). He has written many posts about inflammation in general and some on inflammatory bowel disease in particular. You can peruse his blog, Cooling Inflammation, and view his guidelines for an anti-inflammatory diet here.