Myra's Kitchen Blog  

Eating for Radiant Skin: part 3
Wednesday, April 4, 2012

A Word about Fat:

Fat is important for skin health. It’s a mistake to be on a low-fat or no-fat diet. You need fat in order to digest, transport, and absorb Vitamin A,D,E, and K. It’s soothing to the nervous system.  Every cell in the body has a surrounding membrane – which is where communication between cells take place – that is made up of fat.

You need an array of fats. You need saturated fats to maintain structure; mono and polyunsaturated fats to maintain elasticity. All fats and oils that we consume are made up of a combination of monounsaturated, polyunsaturated, and saturated fats.

Polyunsaturated fats, also know as omega 3’s and 6’s, are the ones your body does not make. These are called essential fatty acids because you have to get them from food sources. Omega 3’s are good for countering inflammation in the body. Good sources for omega 3’s are fatty fish such as sardines, anchovies, tuna, and salmon; nuts, seeds, and organic eggs.

Because of the standard American highly refined diet, most people have far too many Omega 6’s and not enough Omega 3’s. The ideal ratio is somewhere between 1 to 4 times as much omega 6’s as 3’s. Most Americans get 20 times more omega 6’s than 3’s. Poor quality oils and feed lot meat contribute to an excess of Omega 6 fatty acids in the body.

It is easy to get good quality Omega 6’s from whole nuts and seeds, where they are less likely to be rancid. Refined polyunsaturated oils are unstable; they are exposed to high temperatures, chemical solvents, light and oxygen. The essential oils in them are destroyed, and they are rancid and oxidized. They suppress the immune system and cause inflamation. Eating a lot of polyunsaturated oil increases cholesterol in the tissues and cell membranes.

The best fats for cooking, which can take the heat without becoming rancid or oxidized, are butter, ghee (clarified butter), olive oil, coconut oil, and sesame oil.

To get a good supply of omega 3’s, I turn to the tinned fishes that I keep in my pantry. From these pantry staples I have developed nutritious, delicious meals that I can get on the table in minutes.

Wild Salmon, Mackerel, and Sardines from Vital Choice

A couple of years ago I met the folks at Vital Choice when I was at the wise traditions conference. They had a lot of samples of their fish, including everything from the tinned mackerel, sardines, and salmon to the wild king salmon. They were by far the most delicious tinned fish I had ever tasted, and I was impressed with the flash frozen salmon as well. We were served smoked cod from them as a first course as well, another delicious fish they sell. I returned home from the conference with multiple tins of each pantry staple and I ordered a lot more stuff when I returned home. Now I make sure to keep a supply of the flash-frozen salmon as well in my freezer.

(By the way, the Vital Choice catalogue is extensive, and among other products includes macadamia nut oil, dark chocolate, and a variety of different kinds of fish oil.)

One of my super quick go-to lunches is either the mackerel (or sardines) mashed with avocado, lemon, and salt on a bed of greens. I eat it on a bed of greens.

Here’s a quick video on how to make it:

Sardine-Mackerel Mash

Here’s a composed salad made with the sardines:

Composed Sardine Salad

Here’s a quick video on how to make it:

Sardine Salad

Another quick dish that I make a lot is with the flash-frozen wild salmon.

Salmon in Dashi

Here’s the video on how to make this:

Braised Salmon in Dashi

This last dish is made with the canned salmon and fresh salmon roe.

Salmon Frittata with Salmon Roe and Avocado

Salmon roe is a nutritional powerhouse, loaded with anti inflammatory omega 3’s as well as Vitamin A and D.

Here’s how to make it:

Salmon Frittata

Delicious, nutritious, fast, and easy!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Photo: Tess Steinkolk

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