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Feed Your Noggin

Yesterday, I called my husband “Louie”. The only problem is, my husband is Steve and my dog is Louie.

Was my mind going already? Before I started making plans for assisted living and my last wishes, I had some research to do.

The bad news: scientists are scrambling to figure out why the incidence of Alzheimer’s and dementia are on the rise. The good news: you can give your brain a healthy hand with something as simple as good nutrition.

The AARP is a great provider of practical advice on the diseases of aging, regularly sharing wisdom with its 40+ million members (me included!). Here are two foods I liked hearing were a boost to brain health.

Berries: A lifetime of stress, environmental toxins and poor diet trash our brain cells. Berries contain the cleanup crew known as polyphenols – the antioxidant that gives berries their bright colors. Blueberries are considered the number one pick for antioxidant power.

Curry: This spice from India isn’t the first one I reach for when I’m whipping up a quick dinner, but here’s something to consider. Curry is consumed daily in India, and the incidence of Alzheimer’s there is one-fourth the rate of that in the U.S.  How? Curry is shown to help break up the brain plaques that are one of the early signs of Alzheimer’s. I think it’s time to eat more curry.

Ideas on how to add these foods to your diet, compliments of The  6 o’clock Scramble. (See the “special offer” from The 6 o’clock Scramble below)

CURRIED CHICKEN SALAD WITH GRAPES

This fresh chicken salad has just the right combination of creaminess, sweetness and crunch to keep my family happy.

Ingredients for main dish

1-1 1/2 lbs. boneless, skinless chicken breasts

1/2 cup plain nonfat yogurt

1/4 cup reduced-fat mayonnaise

1/2 lemon, juice only, about 2 Tbsp.

2 Tbsp. mango chutney or apricot jam

2-3 tsp. curry powder, to taste

2 stalks celery, finely diced

1 cup seedless red grapes, halved, or use chopped apple, mango or pineapple

1/4 cup shelled and unsalted pistachio nuts, or use slivered almonds or coarsely chopped pecans (optional)

12 slices whole wheat bread (optional)

1 head lettuce (optional)

Rinse the chicken under cold water until it is cool.  Dice the chicken into 1/2-inch pieces.

Meanwhile, in a large bowl, combine the yogurt, mayonnaise, lemon juice, chutney or jam, and curry powder.  Stir in the chicken, celery, grapes and nuts (optional).  Serve it immediately on whole wheat bread, over greens, or chill it for up to 48 hours.  (Start the kale about 30 minutes before you plan to serve the chicken salad.)

Do Ahead or Delegate:  Poach and dice the chicken, combine the yogurt mixture, dice the celery, halve the grapes.

Scramble Flavor Booster:  Use hot Madras curry powder in the salad.

Servings & Prep Time

25 minutes Prep + Cook Time + time to marinate or chill

Servings: 6 · serving size: about 1 1/2 cups

If you read my newsletter, you know that I am vigilant about finding recipes that taste good and can be put together with lightning speed.

That’s what I love about The Six O’Clock Scramble website. Aviva Goldfarb (creator) has done all the work for you. She creates the recipes and the shopping list and I’d happily pay her to come over to my house and cook it, but that’s another newsletter…

She is kindly offering a $5 off coupon for her menu subscription series. I highly recommend this service.

Use the code: ENOS to get your $5 off coupon. Visit www.TheScramble.com

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