Rhubarb has some great health benefits. This vegetable is rich in anti-oxidants that is responsible for its bright red colour, it’s a source of fibre that may help with lowering cholesterol levels, and a source of Vitamin K in which it’s known for wound healing and blood clotting to list a few.
Rhubarb is known for its tartness and normally cooked with sugar to reduce the bitterness. However, you can add natural fruit juices to help with the sour taste & to reduce the calories that come from sugar. Definitely adds more of a natural sweetener.
Rhubarb leaves are inedible and should not be eaten due to their high levels of oxalic acid which is an organic compound found in most plants. There is literature explaining when oxalic acid binds with minerals, can cause health issues in kidneys and other parts of your urinary tract. There are lower levels found in the rhubarb stalk, but it is ok for consumption, and be mindful of eating rhubarb in moderation. You would need to eat a lot for it to meet toxicity that would be concerning.
Rhubarb stalks are prepared and cooked in making jams, tarts, and pies. I have made stewed rhubarb which I use for toppings on desserts and on my oatmeal.
Here is a quick Rhubarb Chia Jam recipe:
3 cups of frozen cut up pieces of rhubarb
5 Tbsp of Honey
1/4 cup of water
Place the above in a saucepan over medium heat and stir occasionally until liquid (water) has been absorbed for about 10 minutes. Should look like a stewed texture and rhubarb becomes soft, but not mushy.
2 Tbsp of Chia seeds
Now add the chia seeds, and continue to stir for 5 minutes or until you get a nice gel like texture or until it’s thickened.
1 Tbsp of Pineapple Juice or (Orang juice)
Remove saucepan from heat and add your juice and stir occasionally and set aside until jam has cooled.
Transfer your rhubarb chia jam to a small jar. Store in refrigerator and good for 1-2 weeks.
Makes about 1 cup.
Nutritional: 1 serving (35g)
29 Calories | 6g CHO | 0g Pro | 0g Fat | 1 g Fibre
Let me share a JCJ story...
Growing up, I was introduced to so many foods and it is most likely why I was such a good eater as a child and one of the reasons why I studied food & nutrition.
I remember watching my mom make these yummy empanadas. Watching her prepare the dough (old school) with no Kitchen Aid mixer, she is definitely an OG when it comes to making everything from scratch! 😉
As a kid, I would pull up a chair to the counter and just watch her make these and pretty much anything. These handheld empanadas are a process to prepare, but are worth the time making because they are so damn delicious.
In the recipe that I am currently developing, I’ve reduced the sugar and added some spinach to the filling. (Again trying to reduce my food waste). I used ground Turkey for a much leaner protein choice also.
Traditionally, you add diced potatoes and frozen peas with the ground meat. So, I did keep these vegetables in the filling. For sweetness, raisins are added too. My preference, is to chop them into smaller pieces and add to the filling mixture. It’s definitely different, but the flavour is so good within that first bite!
If you want to learn more about foods around the world, drop a thumbs up in the comments box below! 👍🏽
#jcjnutrition #FilipinoFoodFriday #foodculture
Daikon - Pickled Asian Radish
Love this Asian radish, Daikon. I like to prepare it as a side dish with meals, and love the tanginess it gives on the palate.
This root vegetable originates from Southeast & East Asia. It is known for its healing, anti-inflammatory, and digestive aiding properties. With its rich source of vitamin C and calcium, it may help repair the body’s cells and support bone health.
It is low calorie, but high in fibre, (4 g per 100g) which can help keep you full and may help with weight management. This vegetable has similar enzymes that are naturally found in our digestive tract and may help with gut health.
It’s commonly served in salads, soups, various condiments and a side dish. This is why I love and encourage to try new food items and recipes because you discover how cool food & nutrition facts can be (especially this unique vegetable).
I like to prepare this radish as a side dish with this easy recipe:
1 lbs of diced, 1/2 inch cubed & peeled Daikon radish (small size)
1/3 cup plus 1 Tbsp of white vinegar
1/3 cup granulated sugar
1 cup of warm water
1 tsp of salt
1. Place diced Daikon in a large glass jar.
2. In a medium pot, add vinegar, water, sugar and salt. Cook on medium heat and stir until sugar and salt is fully dissolved.
3. Pour pickling liquid over the diced Daikon until the liquid fully covers the cubed Daikon. Once cooled (few minutes & jar uncovered), then seal the jar with the lid & place in the refrigerator. Enjoy and serve cold as a side dish to add to your meals.
#asianradish #jcjnutrition #easyrecipes #daikon
Let’s finish the last week of February strong! 💪🏽
1️⃣ If you have a setback, it’s okay, continue to stay focus on your goals. Shift your mindset when you start to have those negative thoughts.
2️⃣ Ensure that you are eating enough throughout the day. (Feed those hunger cues).
3️⃣ Knowing your goals, either it be weight loss, maintaining weight or gaining weight for muscle mass, understand the type of snacks you need. You can seek help with a certified nutritionist/ registered sports dietitian.
4️⃣ Cut yourself some slack. I always tell my clients that, “don’t worry about it, life happens”. Again, any stumbling blocks, just be aware, learn from them and move on.
#finishstrong #seekhelpifneeded #nutritioncoaching #jcjnutrition #nutritioncheerleader
February 23 is #CdnAgDay
Let’s have fun and celebrate the foods we love that are produced locally in Canada!
Why is it good to support local?
1️⃣ It helps our Canadian economy.
2️⃣ Reduces our carbon footprint, so, less travel time and a bonus of getting fresh food products from local farmers & food suppliers.
3️⃣ Creates jobs and employs our friends, family and neighbours.
4️⃣ Builds stronger communities, where these local businesses give back to the community.
My letter to Cancer.
We met in 2007. You changed my world and you touched my family and closest friends. You slowed my life and I had to put running, my workouts, walks, entertaining & cooking good food for my family & friends on hold.
But, you didn’t take my creativity.
I walked laps in the hospital with my family & friends pulling an IV pole to maintain some physical activity to keep me strong. When my platelets were good, I did body squats in a chair & push-ups on the counter in my hospital room.
You didn’t stop me there, my family ordered take out, so I could celebrate a wedding anniversary and a milestone birthday in the hospital.
When my blood counts were good, I went on a weekend pass and planned a freezer food party, so that I was prepared and strong enough to go back at it again for another round of intense treatment.
So, cancer, I’m just letting you know, you can be beat and we will bring you down! Together, we will stay strong & live long. 💜🙏🏽💜🙏🏽
#worldcancerday2021 #beatcancer #bloodcancer #leukemia #leukemiawarrior #leukemiasurvivor #jcjnutrition
How to decrease inflammation and strengthen your immune system.
There are many good tips to reduce inflammation & that support our immune system.
I wanted to share the 4 that I try to incorporate for my own health and well-being.
#jcjnutrition #health&wellbeing #immunesupport #decreaseinflammation #eatvarietyoffoods #nutritionhealth #sleepandrestwell #hydrating #refueladequately
Did You Know?
February is heart health month. ❤️
Foods that your heart will love & keep you on beat!
1️⃣ Fruits & Vegetables. To help with inflammation, body function and weight management. Add more fruits and vegetables to your meals as they provide antioxidants, vitamins & minerals and fibre to help keep you feeling full.
2️⃣ Whole Grains. Choose whole grains more often as they provide fibre and help reduce cholesterol.
3️⃣ Choose lean cuts of meat (chicken, pork & beef). Look for “loin” or “round” which our leaner meats, poultry without skin & fish. Try alternatives like beans and lentils, to incorporate plant based protein into your meals. Variety is key, so next time try a vegetarian lasagna.
4️⃣ Include dairy products and alternatives too! Choose unflavoured or plain yogurts. But if you need to add a sweet taste, add dried fruit & nuts to make it interesting. With the key nutrients that cheese, other milk products & alternatives have (vitamin D, calcium, & magnesium, just to name a few) these may help reduce cardiovascular risk.
5️⃣ Reduce your sodium intake. Consuming too much sodium from processed foods or adding salt to your meals can increase your risk of heart disease and stroke. Try to add flavour by exploring with fresh & dried herbs or using low/no sodium seasonings, such as Mrs. Dash.
6️⃣ Move! Get up & go for a walk, play a sport, have fun at the playground with your kids. Keep active & have fun!
For more information about heart health refer to
#hearthealthawareness #hearthealth #lowsodium #eatvegetables #eatfruits #fibreiskey #foodandnutrition #leanmeats #plantbasedfood #goodfats #omega3 #nuts
Did You Know?
The benefit of healthy snacking is to help meet our nutritional needs by providing us energy to concentrate at work, school, playing sports or any type of physical activity you love to do.
Healthy snacking helps us satisfy our hunger cues between our next meal. They may help with muscle recovery when training/playing a sport activity & may help stabilize our blood sugars which may prevent over snacking in the evening.
Some small snacks include, a piece of fruit, a yogurt cup, or some trail mix. Larger snacks are 1/2 PBJ (or any nut butter) sandwich, hummus & pita wedges, cheese string & an apple. These are just a few snack options to help plan your day for success.
Remember to choose nutrient dense food items that are high in fibre, have healthy fats and are lean protein sources. And know the difference between a snack vs a treat.
Want to learn more about food & nutrition? Check out my other food and nutrition blogs at JCJNutrition.com