An increasing number of young Kenyans are getting diagnosed with gout.
What was once called a rich man’s disease is now affecting a large number of both men and women.
Factors that may increase your chances of developing gout include family history ,being overweight,consuming more than 2 drinks a day if you are a man and more than 1 drink for women,diets high in meat and fats which are high in purine and result in production of uric acid.
Gout develops when your body produces too much uric acid.
Uric acid is a waste product the human body produces,when produced in excess by the body it finds its way into crystallizes and joints where it causes the swellings commonly associated with gout.
A simple blood test at a medical facility will confirm if you have gout.
For anyone with a family history of gout or already having the condition some guidelines on living with gout and managing it with diet are:
1. Avoid alcohol especially beer and distilled spirits,if you have to drink take just a glass of wine.
2.Take meat,meat products,sea food,poultry in moderation.
3.Keep a high intake of water,6-8 glasses a day is ideal.
4.At every meal ensure you have vegetables and fruit..
5.If you are over weight ,exercise and adopt healthier food choices.
Weaning is a really exciting time for both mother and baby.
After 6 months your baby’s nutritional needs cannot be adequately catered for with just breast milk or formula.
That is why a careful choice of first foods is important
Your little bubba at 6 months is ready to be introduced to solid foods….gradually.
Breast milk should still remain the main source of nourishment for your baby but she needs some extra nutrients which is why t is very important to make informed choices on what the best foods for weaning your baby are.
You will find a lot of ready made baby food,ignore them.
Nature provides some of the best foods for baby,remember too that you are also setting the foundation for future food choices.
Always follow the lead pattern of your child when it comes to introducing solids to your baby,introduce a teaspoon or two of just one kind of food at a time.
Sauteing or steaming your baby food are the best methods when it comes to preparing your baby’s food.
Here is a guide on foods that are perfect starter foods for your baby.
When introducing cereals to a baby when introducing baby porridge always make sure it is of a thin consistency and should be mixed with your breast milk/formula as cereals do tend to be pretty bland.
Cooked green baby bananas not the matoke variety are also a very common and easily accessible first food for babies within the east African region.
Because they are low in calories ,once cooked puree them and add some breast milk till you have a thin consistency your baby can swallow.
With time you can mix your bananas with vegetables like pumpkin ,peas,carrots in order to increase their nutritional value.
There is no need to add any sweeteners to your baby’s cereal at this point.
This should be added when baby is already used to solids,most babies take to fruits like fish to water.
Fruits like pawpaw,bananas which should be really ripe then mashed with a fork and some breast milk/formula added to thin it out,also do try avocado.
Stay away from citrus fruits till your baby is one year.
Other fruits like apples and pears can be introduced after 8 months need to be steamed to make it easier for your baby digest them.
Peas,pumpkin,carrots and even sweet potatoes are a great source of nourishment for baby during the first months.
Cook then then strain or blend making sure you add milk to ensure your baby is able to swallow them.
stay away from strong tasting vegetables like cauliflower and broccoli till a little later when your baby has formed a consistent eating pattern.
Watch the stool pattern of your baby when you start them on vegetables and in case of any loose bowel movements or mucus in their stool omit it and try again after a month.
Amazing things happen to your body body in your second trimester which covers week 13-week 28.
Read more on pre – pregnancy nutrition and your first trimester here and here.
Your blood flow will increase by at least 50 % ,that is why you need extra iron.
The 300 extra calories you need daily……that is for the rapid growth spurt you and your baby are in.
Baby will be be four times bigger than they were when your first trimester ended.
You need to amp up not only your calorie intake but to also ensure you increase the amount of protein,iron,folate and calcium to cater for the extra nutritional needs your body demands.
And the constipation and heart burn that characterizes this period…..well it is because the pregnancy hormone progesterone has slowed down your digestive system.
By ensuring your meals are smaller,snacking on healthy foods when you are hungry and making sure you take your water between your meals rather than with your meals your digestive system should be pretty happy.
To ensure you are meeting your daily nutritional requirements during this time,your meals should be composed of foods from all food groups,make your plate a colorful one.
During your snack time,eat healthy foods like fruits,vegetable sticks with your yogurt,nuts and seeds or carry a healthy sandwich with you to work.
I love the earthy smell of turmeric and the fact that my star sign is Virgo may have something to do with it.
Virgos are said to be very health conscious and are known to have very refined palates,this may explain my obsession with preparing food well.
I love potatoes a lot and my kids seem to have taken after me,they eat potatoes in all their forms,fried,baked,roasted and they especially love mashed potatoes.
Yesterday i decided to indulge them with their favorite food but this time i would add some turmeric and it worked like a charm…they cleaned their plates.
You can read about turmeric benefits and why for me it defines Indian cuisine for me.
Hello food delivers traditional Indian food that contains spices like turmeric ,try their amazing food and see why turmeric is such a definitive spice for this culinary style.
This recipe could be tried with baby potatoes ,just make sure you thoroughly clean them without bruising the skin and boil them as is,without peeling .
1 kilo of Irish potatoes,washed peeled.
1 small red onion,chopped.
1/4 teaspoon turmeric powder
1 cup frozen peas
salt and ground black pepper to taste.
1.In a mediums sized saucepan add,1 and a half tablespoons of vegetable oil then add your chopped red onion and saute on low heat till soft.
2.Add the turmeric to the onions and stir,let cook for 2 minutes then add your potatoes,stir the potatoes till they are coated in the oil,onions and turmeric.you get lovely looking turmeric kissed potatoes.
3.Add salt to taste and black pepper,stir ,let cook for a minute.
4.Add enough water to cover the potatoes then cover the saucepan with a lid ,bring to boil and let simmer for 15,add your frozen peas,then let boil for a further 5 minutes to cook the peas.The potatoes are ready when a fork easily passes through .
5.Remove from heat and drain the potatoes reserving a cup of the liquid.
6.Using the back of a wooden spoon mash your potatoes till smooth,then serve.
She practically smacks her lips with delight when she is having them with her favorite food so far…mashed green bananas.
So much does she seem to enjoy them that i had to buy the seeds and plant some in my kitchen garden.
Zucca is the Italian name for pumpkin and zucchini is the dimuntive form of that…which means little pumpkin.
The zucchini comes in both green and yellow varieties,though in Kenya we only seem to grow the green zucchini/courgette.
It is a vegetable that is very versatile and can be cooked in all manner of ways .You can grill,fry,add it to stews,stuff and even deep fry it.
I will be posting zucchini a recipe for zucchini pancakes soon.
Practically everything this plant has is edible,from the flowers ,leaves and the fruit itself.
The leaves are cooked in the same way you would pumpkin leaves,while the flowers can be dipped in a light batter of flour and eggs and deep fried or stuffed with precooked rice,diced vegetables,meats and also deep fried.
The zucchini fruit is rich in folate,a B vitamin that the body does not store and whose intake is needed daily for the synthesis of DNA and RNA.
Folate intake is especially important for pregnant mothers because it helps prevent neural birth defects like spina bifida.
Zucchini are also rich in potassium,Vitamin A and scant amounts of manganese .
So next time you go shopping do not dare pass these delightful little pumpkins.
Here is a picture i took of grated zucchini and carrots that use to thicken my stews…it does look lovely not to mention all the added nutritional benefits of two of my favorite vegetables.
Better English was an English grammar book we used in class 3 ..the year 19 something and it had some tongue twisters.
My favourite at the time wa all about Betty Botter and her butter.
It went something like this….
Betty Botter bought some butter, “But,” she said, “this butter’s bitter. If I bake this bitter butter, It will make my batter bitter. But a bit of better butter – That would make my batter better.” So she bought a bit of butter, Better than her bitter butter, And she baked it in her batter, And the batter was not bitter. So ’twas better Betty Botter Bought a bit of better butter.
Maybe this obsession with Betty may explain my love for butter despite what health experts say that its bad for your arteries.
I don’t use it everyday because like all good things moderation is key but when I do..
It is great especially when working with wheat and for popcorn,gives popped corn a really nice buttery taste.
And for toasted bread ,especially when you want to make garlic bread…..scrumptious.
In terms of nutritional value;a gramme of butter gives you about 7 calories .
It is rich in vitamins A and E,Riboflavin which is also known as B12 an is important for body growth and in red cell production,it also helps in releasing energy from carbohydrates.
It is also rich in minerals great for your bones and teeth like calcium,phosphorus and potassium while also containing a good amount of sodium and small amounts of fluoride,zinc and magnesium.
The Kenyan dairy market has only two types of butter ;salted and unsalted butter.
Salted butter has a longer shelf life than unsalted.
If you intend to use butter in your cooking use the unsalted one.
When using butter for any recipe scoop as much as the recipe needs and refrigerate the rest.
When making bread,cookies,cake,flat bread/ chapati or any product that calls for rubbing butter into the flour make sure it’s at room temperature before adding it to your flour.The exception would be in certain pastry recipes where it may call for using cold butter.
If you are not going to be using the butter too quickly freeze it as this will help it keep for longer.
When using butter for frying,never heat it over high heat as t burns very easily,moderately low heat is best.
When using butter with other oils like sunflower oil,first heat the pan add the oil then add your butter .
Butter can also be added to soups to give them a glossy silky smooth texture.
Here is how to make coriander or dhania butter that you can use on toasted bread/crostini.Only make as much as you can use at a time.
3 tablespoons butter at room temperature
1 finely chopped tablespoon of coriander
In a small bowl using a fork thoroughly mix the butter and coriander together .