Posts Tagged ‘Jenny Matthau’

NGI President Jenny Matthau, Chef Rich LaMarita, and grad Colin Zhu

Our Chef’s Training grad Colin Zhu was kind enough to report to us on NGI’s recent collaboration to teach a nutrition class with NY Coalition for Health School Food at PS 184 in Chinatown . . . 

On Friday, May 25, the Natural Gourmet Institute had the good fortune to do cooking demonstrations at P.S. 184, Shuang Wen Elementary School in Chinatown. The NGI team consisted of Chef Instructor Rich LaMarita, Chef’s Training Graduate Colin Zhu, Chef’s Training student Steven Stewart and NGI President Jenny Matthau.

NGI collaborated with Healthy School Food in teaching nutrition to two 5th grade classes. As each nutrition class ended, Colin and Steven assisted Chef Rich in the set-up of the food demonstration. As enthusiastic as the students were with each nutritional class, they could not help being totally enticed by what the chefs were preparing.

The NGI team made three dishes for the students: sticky brown rice cooked with coconut milk and star anise; black beans with onions, tomatoes, toasted cumin and oregano; and a hearty guacamole made with red onions, chopped Beefsteak tomatoes, cumin and cilantro served with crisp sticks of jicama.

During the presentation, Chef Rich displayed all the ingredients, talked about the unique origins of each food item, showed how to sauté the toppings for the black beans and how to make guacamole.

The students were eager to try each dish. Having just learned about macronutrients the class before, they were excited to have their senses amused by an actual cooking demo right in their own classrooms. The combination of nutrition class and a fantastic cooking demonstration created the perfect recipe for each student’s culinary curiosity.

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On April 18, 2012 Natural Gourmet Institute again supported the annual gala event to benefit Healthcorps, hosted by Dr. Mehmet and Lisa Oz. Founded by the Ozs’s in 2007 to combat childhood obesity and “mental resilience crises” among youths, Healthcorps has to date placed peer mentors in over 80 schools for the purpose of educating students about mental and physical fitness as well as nutritional education.

The gala was held this year at the Waldorf Astoria Hotel and attended by NGI Founder Annemarie Colbin, NGI President Jenny Matthau, NGI Vice President and Director Merle Brown, NGI Public Program Director Judith Friedman, and Instructor Elliott Prag. Chef Instructor Barbara Rich presided over the Natural Gourmet table during the cocktail hour where we served up vegan and gluten-free hors d’oeuvres alongside our friends from Candle Café and Pure Food and Wine, among others.

NGI Chef's Training students (left to right) Lauren Friedman, Maudie Green, and Gabriel Anderson

Chef Instructor Barbara Rich

The event is in its 6th successful year, and Natural Gourmet has been proud to be there every step of the way for this important cause.

Merle Brown, Jenny Matthau, and Annemarie Colbin (left to right)

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Natural Gourmet Institute’s President, Jenny Matthau, is our resident expert and lecturer on issues relating to heart disease, healthy and harmful fats, and dietary approaches to achieve heart health.

NGI President Jenny Matthau

People continue to ask me the best way to lower cholesterol with diet and lifestyle to lower their risk of heart disease. I tell them the issue is not as simple as it appears to be. The following are my recommendations for cholesterol “management” . . .

There is mounting evidence that raising HDL cholesterol is more important than lowering LDL cholesterol, particularly in women.  To raise HDL:  most effective is aerobic exercise.  For maximum benefits, burn at least 1200 calories weekly.

With respect to diet:

Consume . . .

  • Moderate alcohol (one drink for women, one to two drinks daily for men)
  • Coconut products
  • Omega-3 fatty acids from cold water fatty fish, meat, milk and eggs from grass-fed animals, flax, chia, hemp and algae
  • Saturated fats from healthy animals (organically raised and grass-fed)
  • Soluble fiber found in oats, barley, legumes, carrots, apples, pears, citrus, berries, flax seeds
  • Raw onion
  • Green tea.

Avoid . . .

  • Trans fats (they lower HDL and raise LDL and the more atherogenic LPA)
  • Sugar and refined carbohydrates (they raise triglycerides, which are inversely related to HDL)
  • Excessive omega-6 fatty acids found most abundantly in these oils: grapeseed, safflower, sunflower, corn and soy
  • Commercially-raised animal foods.

While LDL cholesterol is a “risk factor” for young and middle-aged men, it is not for women, or for people aged 70 or older regardless of gender.  Note that the term “risk factor” does not connote causality, only a positive association.

Lowering cholesterol, without addressing the inflammatory causes of heart disease does not result in lower mortality rates.  That being said, to lower LDL:

Avoid foods rich in . . .

  • Saturated fats (they tend to raise LDL)
  • Concentrated sugars (they raise triglycerides, which can cause the liver to produce very small, dense particle LDL, the most dangerous kind).

Consume . . .

  • Legumes
  • Whole grains
  • Vegetables
  • Foods rich in monounsaturated fats (olives, avocados, nuts, particularly macadamias)
  • Foods rich in omega-3 fatty acids.

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