A: Absolutely. A study published recently in the BMJ, a medical trade journal of the British Medical Association, found that eating either processed or unprocessed red meat was associated with higher risk of heart disease in American men. However, just one serving a day of healthy protein-containing plant foods (think oatmeal or quinoa) was associated with lower risk of heart disease. The study found men over 65 had the greatest benefit from the switch. Unprocessed red meat includes fresh beef, pork, lamb and venison. Processed red meat includes deli meats, bacon, ham, sausage and jerky. Substitute beans, lentils, nuts, soy products and quinoa or other whole grains for just one serving of meat a day to make a difference. It can be as easy as skipping breakfast meats in favor of yogurt, oatmeal or cottage cheese.
Spring is when I think of adding more veggies to my meals. And I've found a great way to do that is in a stir-fry. Here's a recipe for an Asian Stir-Fry, adapted from the Anti-Inflammatory Diet for Dummies.
ASIAN CHICKEN STIR-FRY
1 large boneless, skinless chicken breast, cubed
2 scallions, sliced, white and green parts
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 small zucchini, sliced
1 small yellow summer squash, sliced