Red Lentil and Pumpkin Soup

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This lovely recipe comes from one of our amazing Balgowlah clients Pam. Pam reports that it absolutely delicious! Pam has been enjoying eating the soup as a good way to pack more veggies in. Thanks for sharing Pam :)

Serves 4

Ingredients

450g pumpkin, peeled, chopped (oven roasted)

2 teaspoons olive oil

1 brown onion, chopped (or 1 leek, sliced)

2 cloves garlic, crushed

1 large carrot, grated

1 cup dried red lentils, rinsed, drained

3 cups reduced-salt vegetable stock

400g can no-added-salt diced tomatoes

1 teaspoon turmeric

1 teaspoon ground ginger

Pepper to taste

4 slices grainy sourdough bread

1 small avocado, sliced

1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley

1/3 cup low-fat natural yoghurt, to serve 

Instructions

1.     Preheat oven to 200oC / 180oC fan-forced.  Place cut pumpkin in a bowl and mix with a little olive oil.  Line a large baking tray with baking paper and add pumpkin.  Bake for 40 minutes or until pumpkin is golden and tender. 

2.     Heat oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add onion / leek and cook for 5 minutes or until soft. Add garlic, carrot, lentils, stock, 2 cups water, tomatoes and pepper to taste.

3.     Bring to the boil, reduce heat and simmer, covered, for 15 minutes.  Add warm cooked pumpkin and simmer for another 10 minutes.

4.     Remove from heat and puree using a stick blender.

5.     Meanwhile, toast bread and top with sliced avocado. Sprinkle soup with parsley, dollop with yoghurt and serve with avocado toast.

Nutrition:

Kilojoules: 1,842kJ               Total fat: 16g                           Dietary fibre: 12.8g

Calories: 440cal                   Saturated fat: 3.6g                Sodium: 958mg

Protein: 23.2g                        Carbohydrates: 45.3g         Calcium: 138mg

Sugars: 15.2g                         Iron: 5.1mg

Nutrition to get you to your Nineties!

Do you want to live a long life? Do you want to live a comfortable life? (Minimised stressful life events like heart attacks, falls and injuries or even bothering stomach upsets or sickness) If you like me, I'd like to think I was still skydiving at age 85 ;)

I was very honoured today to have a visit from a beautiful client who is just about to turn 93. This is the second time within a couple of years I have been graced with the presence of someone who can sit in front of me and talk about living through the second world war!

The longer our consult went on, the more I began to admire her sense of health and positive daily habits. It soon became apparent to me WHY she had lived so long. Ok yes, genetics have some say in your risk of disease pathways but this woman was living proof of dietary choices impacting profoundly upon longevity.

Some simple things I observed (and from which we can all learn from):

- She grew her own vegetables in her own garden. Every day she would pick only as much as she needed for her meals (No food wastage, she gets food sustainability points too!). These were seasonal vegetables free of pesticides and full of fibre, vitamins and minerals.

- She ate regular meals and included afternoon and morning snacks of fresh fruit, yoghurt or nuts. High quality nutrients to maintain bone integrity and immunity

- She ate fresh fish 4-5x/week for lunch with her garden vegetables and a couple of potatoes. Fish has always been regarded as a phenomenally nourishing choice due to is Omega 3's which support cognition, maintain healthy cholesterol levels and support healthy joints. Potatoes are a good source of carbohydrate, B6 which supports the nervous system and vitamin C, an antioxidant which reduces cellular damage.

- She didn't drink any coffee but mostly tea and a glass of water every meal

- She was in bed by 830pm every night and slept a solid 8 hours

- Although 93, she still participated in bowls 2x/week and gardened most days out in the sun (Our primary source of vitamin D!)

This client and I had a fantastic education session. She is now implementing some of my advice to tweak her diet further. I just love that she is so open to this even at her age.

So, I ask you. How do you want you health to be and what do you want to be doing with your life at age 93? Why not act now?