Here's the thing. It's predicted that in the next 50 years, 1 in 3 people will be diagnosed with cancer. With those odds, I think learning everything we can about the disease now can only help. You'd think that seeing everything I've seen over the past several weeks would make me ultra paranoid about getting cancer. But it's done exactly the opposite. Knowledge is power, and I feel much more empowered than I ever have before regarding cancer. Treatment options have improved by leaps and bounds in both traditional and alternative medicine. I'll get more into both of those topics very soon.
So, obviously I've been a little pre-occupied lately. Like, so pre-occupied that I haven't actually "cooked" a full meal in weeks. I've been throwing together any ingredients I can find. My motto? The easier, the better. I've been cutting corners left and right andI've given new meaning to the words, "fast foods". But I've also come up with some super fabulous, easy, cheap meals. And this one is definitely in my top 3. Try it. I promise you'll be surprised.
Sauteed Artichoke Hearts with Lemon Pepper and Balsamic Vinegar
1can quartered artichoke hearts (organic if possible)
1-2 tablespoons avocado or coconut oil
squeeze of lemon or lime
2 teaspoons balsamic vinegar (we use gluten free)
*other vegetables of choice
lemon pepper & sea salt to taste
*additional vegetables - tomatoes (fresh or sundried), onions, zuchinni, sweet potatoes, spinach, kale, carrots, celery, etc. (I've used several different combinations, my favorite being sundried tomatoes, kale, and red onions).
Place small pan on low heat. Add oil. Drain artichoke hearts and place them in the heated pan. Cook and stir. After a minute or two, turn up the heat to medium. Add lemon or lime juice and balsamic vinegar. Sautee for several more minutes or until they start to brown a bit and then add your other vegetables (unless you're using sweet potatoes - they need to cook for about 6-7 minutes before you add the artichoke hearts). When the artichokes look browned to your liking and the other vegetables are warm and wilted, remove pan from heat. Season liberally with sea salt and lemon pepper. Serve immediately.
And just in case you were wondering...
Health benefits of Artichoke
- Artichoke is low in calories and fat, but is a rich source of dietary fiber; provide 5.4 g per 100 g, about 14% of RDA. Dietary-fiber helps control constipation conditions, decrease bad or "LDL" cholesterol levels by binding to it in the intestines and help prevent colon cancer risks by preventing toxic compounds in the food from absorption.
- Artichoke contains bitter principles, cynarin and sesquiterpene-lactones. Scientific studies show that these compounds inhibit cholesterol synthesis and increase its excretion in the bile and thus; have overall cholesterol reduction in the blood.
- Fresh artichoke is an excellent source of vitamin folic acid; provide about 68 µg per 100 g (17% of recommended daily allowance). Folic acid acts as a co-factor for enzymes involved in the synthesis of DNA. Scientific studies have proven that adequate levels of folates in the diet during pre-conception period, and during early pregnancy, help prevent neural tube defects in the newborn baby.
- Fresh globes also contain good amounts of anti-oxidant vitamin; vitamin-C (Provides about 20% of recommended levels per 100 g). Regular consumption of foods rich in vitamin C helps the body develop resistance against infectious agents and scavenge harmful, pro-inflammatory free radicals from the body.
- It is one of the vegetable sources for vitamin K; provide about 12% of DRI. Vitamin K has potential role bone health by promoting osteotrophic (bone formation) activity. Adequate vitamin-K levels in the diet help limiting neuronal damage in the brain; thus, has established role in the treatment of patients suffering from Alzheimer's disease.
- It is an also good source of antioxidants such as silymarin, caffeic acid, and ferulic acid, which help the body protect from harmful free-radical agents. Total antioxidant strength (ORAC) of artichokes (globe or french) is 6552 µmol TE/100 g.
- It is also rich in B-complex group of vitamins such as niacin, vitamin B-6 (pyridoxine), thiamin, and pantothenic acid that are essential for optimum cellular metabolic functions.
- Further, artichoke is rich source of minerals like copper, calcium, potassium, iron, manganese and phosphorus. Potassium is an important component of cell and body fluids that helps controlling heart rate and blood pressure by countering effects of sodium. Manganese is used by the body as a co-factor for the antioxidant enzyme, superoxide dismutase. Copper is required in the production of red blood cells. Iron is required for red blood cell formation.
- Additionally, it contains small amounts of antioxidant flavonoid compounds like carotene-beta, lutein, and zea-xanthin
- Annie ♥