Scientists Serve Up World's Healthiest Meal
Toss out those rice cakes, there's a new healthy meal plan in town. The folks at Leatherhead Food Research, an independent research company in the United Kingdom, have used 222 food health claims approved by the European Commission to create the world's healthiest meal.
Sifting through some 4,000 health claims used by manufacturers and supermarkets to tempt shoppers into buying their products, the researchers identified the few hundred that had scientific merit and set about creating a meal to include as many as possible.
Like Us on Facebook
The 3-course menu includes many 'superfoods' - those high in nutrients but low in saturated fats or artificial ingredients - and starts with a salmon terrine made of fresh and smoked fish, which has Omega 3 fatty acids and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) that are good for the arteries, heart and brain. Then on to a mixed leaf salad with extra virgin olive oil dressing, which is packed with vitamins that encourage skin health and is good for maintaining normal blood cholesterol levels.
For the entrée, a chicken casserole with lentils and mixed vegetables and a side of high-fiber rolls. The protein in the main dish contributes to growth in muscle mass and the pantothenic acid found in lentils can help reduce tiredness and improve mental performance.
And yes, there's even dessert. The yogurt-based custard topped with walnuts and sugar-free caramel sauce is good for digestion and can also have benefits for teeth and glucose control. Walnuts also contain antioxidants, which may suppress the growth of cancers, according to The Huffington Post.
The inspiration for the meal, which began as a challenge to create a healthy airline meal, came while Leatherhead CEO Paul Berryman was in flight.
"I thought of the airline meal concept when flying back from Vitafoods in Geneva," he said, according to ABC News. "I had spent three days talking about health claims and at a round table event I suggested that Leatherhead could make a product with all 222 claims, no problem! It wasn't that simple, but we did it within one week!"
The researchers also made suggestions for healthy snacks, including a 30-gram pack of walnuts, a mineral electrolyte sports drink of their own concoction with cranberry, raspberry and elderflower, and a mixed berry meal replacement shake for dieters.
'We have also shown that healthy foods do not have to be dull,' Berryman told The Daily Mail. 'We carry out thousands of consumer taste tests a year and one thing is clear. No matter how healthy, if foods do not taste good they will not sell.
© 2012 iScience Times All rights reserved. Do not reproduce without permission.