Vegetarian Fresh Fruit Low Shang

Yusheng , yee sang or yuu shang (simplified Chinese: 鱼生; pinyin: yúshēng) is a Chaozhou-style raw fish salad. It usually consists of strips of raw fish (most commonly salmon), mixed with shredded vegetables and a variety of sauces and condiments, among other ingredients. Yusheng literally means “raw fish” but since “fish ()” is commonly conflated with its homophone “abundance ()”, Yúshēng (鱼生) is interpreted as a homophone for Yúshēng (余升) meaning an increase in abundance. Therefore, yusheng is considered a symbol of abundance, prosperity and vigor.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Yusheng

This dish is usually eaten on the seventh day of the New Year, but is eaten throughout the Chinese Lunar New Year nowadays. Most restaurants in Malaysia offer it even before Chinese New Year and at some places it is available throughout the year.

“Lo Hei” — tossing yusheng — is a Singaporean/Malaysian Chinese New Year custom for families and friends to gather around the table and, on cue, proceeding to toss the shredded ingredients into the air with chopsticks while saying 吉祥话 (Jíxiáng Huà, auspicious wishes) out loud to mark the start of a prosperous new year. It is said that the higher you toss, the more prosperous or more of what you wish for the year will be more likely to come true..(in a mad competition of out tossing, you will normally find pieces of good food flying out of the plate, so much for abundance.)

Here’s a yee shang recipe for those who like a new twist to the general fare and very suitable for vegetarians, by the courtesy of Nathalie Chu of Kepong, Malaysia who operates 2 holistic health clinics in Malaysia.

Ladies and gentlemen, may I present you with the Fresh Fruit ‘Low Shang’!

fresh-fruit-low-sang

The fresh Fruit ‘Low Shang’ Ingredients

Apple – 1pc
Beetroot – 1pc
Carrot – 1pc
Cucumber – 1pc
Jambu Batu -2pc
Mango – 1pc
Grapefruits – 1pc
Kombu Toku
Walnut
Sesame(black/white)
Peanut
Longan Honey
Neu Vida Oil/Udo oil
Pineapple sauce
Lemon ¼ pc
黄梨酱 Pineapple sauce
黄梨半粒 Pineapple – ½ pcs
蔗糖适量 Cane Sugar

Slice all the fruits and arrange it in a circular manner as per picture

Then add the pineapple sauce and cane sugar on top of it to taste

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Start to mix or ‘low’ in Cantonese…while repeating ‘Shang hei’ which means ‘better fortune for the new year repeatedly or any other auspicious wishes like good health for the coming year and smooth sailing in all endeavours.

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‘Low Hei’ in action…. toss it high high in the air !!!!

Meat or Veggie? Your choice!

Are you a vegetarian? Are you a meat lover?

I am both. And if you are me, we are classified as omnivore.

Fancy thinking that the way we eat will lead us towards a healthy life free of illness. How ignorant can we be. As humans we are creatures of habits. Giving up meat!? Are you crazy!? I would starve half way through the day! You will fall ill and develop muscular degenerative disease without meat! My uncle died because he didn’t take meat.. the doctor said so… and loads and tons of, what I call, excuses.

Consider these facts below (the protein referred in these cases are casein protein)..

In an experiment involving liver cancer and protein consumption in two groups of laboratory rats. One group was given AF (aflatoxin, fungus produced carcinogen) and then fed with 20% protein. The second group was given the same level of AF and then fed diets containing only 5% protein. Every single rat fed 20% protein got liver cancer or its precursor lesions, but not a single animal fed a 5% protein diet got liver cancer or its precursor lesions. It was not a trivial difference; it was 100% versus 0%.

In another study, it was observed that foci development was almost entirely dependent on how much protein was consumed, regardless of how much aflatoxin was consumed.

Foci are precursor clusters of cells that grow into tumors. Although most foci do not become full-blown tumor cells, they are predictive of tumor development.

By watching foci develop and measuring how many there are and how big they become, they were able to indirectly learn how tumors also develop and what effect protein might have.

To add more weight to the theory that protein is the determinant in cancer growth, two groups of rats was given different doses of aflatoxin. The high-aflatoxin dose group was given low-protein diet and the low-aflatoxin toxin group was given high-protein diet. The results were remarkable!

Animals starting with the most cancer initiation (high-aflatoxin dose) developed substantially less foci when fed the 5% protein diet. In contrast, animals initiated with a
low-aflatoxin dose actually produced substantially more foci when subsequently fed the 20% protein diet.

The study was taken a step further by setting up a step-by-step sequence of experiment. All animals were dosed with the same amount of carcinogen, then alternatively fed either 5% to 20% dietary protein during the twelve-week promotion stage. This twelve-week promotion stage was divide into four periods of three weeks each. Period 1
represents weeks one to three, period 2 represents weeks four to six, and so on.

When animals were fed the 20% protein diet during periods 1 and 2 (20-20), foci continued to enlarge, as expected. But when animals were switched to the low-protein diet at the beginning of period 3 (20-20-5),there was a sharp decrease in foci development. And, when animals were subsequently switched back to the 20% protein diet during period 4 (20-20-5-20), foci development was turned on once again.

Several experiments were done simultaneously and they found that foci growth could be reversed, up and down, by switching the amount of protein being consumed, and at all stages of foci development.

The next question that you might be asking is, plants have protein too especially soy. Should I avoid that too?

In the experiments, the protein used was casein protein, which makes up 87%of cow’s milk protein. In another study, plant protein did not promote cancer growth even at higher
levels of intake. Gluten, protein of wheat, did not produce the same result as casein, even when fed the same 20% level! Soy protein diets also produced the same plant protein results.

Thank God for the China Study. People who read this book could look forward to better understanding of nutrition and how conventional medicine might not be the first choice when it comes to preserving your health. I am particularly taken in by the amount of effort put into this study that aims to prove that you can be healthy by eating the way you are supposed to.

I, for one, am changing to more veggies and whole food (whole food does not mean eating the whole chicken) and less on meat especially during dinner. Go get the book. It’s costs like RM61.00 but what it is about to reveal to you might save the life of you and your loved ones.

On another note … “Veggies are so boring. So tasteless.” If you are this type…. Go out and try some dishes from organic shops around your neighborhood, you will surely discover that natural plant based food can be tasty and adventurous at the same time. Remember though, if the dish comes out bland, it is the problem with the cook not the veggies…

FLEX with FLAX

I consider flaxseed as the best source of plant-based Omega 3 fatty acid which is also known as Alpha linolenic acid (ALA). I use it when available in my whey protein mix to help boost up in my essential fatty acids intake. I also find it particularly useful to ground some flaxseed to be added into cooked or steamed veggie dishes. The use of flaxseed in our diet is limitless. (have always wanted to try coating pieces of fish fillet or chicken fillet with flaxseed, wonder how it will turn out)

Let’s see what has flaxseed got to offer.

Well for a history lesson, flaxseed has been around for the last 4,000 years and has been known for its healthful benefits. Although gone into obscurity throughout the years, flaxseed is making a comeback with a vengeance. Many modern scientific studies concludes or suggests that flaxseed can be effective in combating LDL cholesterol, reduces triglycerides, blood pressure and even lower incidence of breast cancer.

Besides ALA, flaxseed has 2 other components lignan and fiber. Lignan is a type of phytoestrogen (antioxidant). This powerful property can bind estrogen receptors, hence inhibiting the onset of estrogen-stimulated breast cancer.

In a small Canadian study of 39 women, for example, researchers from the University of Toronto found that flaxseed may boost conventional treatment for breast cancer. In the study, reported in the American Institute for Cancer Research Newsletter in 1998, postmenopausal women with breast cancer ate either a plain muffin or a muffin ocntaining 25 grams of flaxseed oil every day for approximately five-and-a-half weeks. Of the 29 out of the 39 women who ate both muffins, researchers found reductions in the growth of their tumors.

There  is also research on populations which has higher amounts of lignan in their diets has lower incidence of breast cancer and colon cancer. Flaxseed is 100 times richer in lignan content than any other whole grains!

To appreciate the benefits of flaxseed, I would recommend that you look up Essential Fatty Acids andread more about it.

Other benefits of flaxseed includes:

  1. Helps protect the body against high blood pressure, inflammation, water retention, sticky platelets and lowered immune function.
  2. Studies show that Omega-3 fatty acids help lower cholesterol and blood triglycerides, and prevent clots in arteries, which may result in strokes, heart attacks and thromboses.
  3. Shortens recovery time for fatigued muscles after exertion.
  4. Increases the body’s production of energy and also increases stamina.
  5. Accelerates the healing of sprains and bruises.
  6. Eases weight loss in people afflicted with obesity.
  7. Stimulates brown fat cells and increases the metabolic rate making it easier to burn off fat.
  8. Improves the absorption of Calcium.
  9. Strengthens finger and toenails.
  10. Can improve eyesight and perception of colors.
  11. Can often improve the function of the liver.
  12. Can relieve the side effects and stop development of many forms of cancer.
  13. Can relieve some cases of Asthma.
  14. Helpful in the treatment of Eczema, Psoriasis, and Dandruff.
  15. Can relieve the symptoms of Rheumatoid Arthritis. It can relieve the symptoms of Diabetes Mellitus.
  16. Can alleviate some allergies.
  17. Helps prevent Atherosclerosis (the accumulation of fatty deposits inside the blood vessels, especially the large and medium-sized arteries, that many people experience during the aging process).
  18. Lowers high blood pressure in Hypertension sufferers.
  19. Has been scientifically proven to treat some cases of depression.
  20. Can improve the mental function of many old age pensioners.
  21. Can help in the treatment of Multiple Sclerosis.
  22. Has been proven to improve the behavior of Schizophrenics.
  23. Can relieve some cases of Premenstrual Syndrome (PMS) in females.

Point to note

alpha linolenic acid (ALA) found in flaxseed, an omega-3 fat that is a precursor to the form of omega-3 found in fish oils called eicosapentaenoic acid or EPA. Since the fats are found in their isolated form in flaxseed oil, it is a more concentrated source of ALA than the seeds themselves (although it doesn’t have the other nutrients that the seeds do). ALA, in addition to providing several beneficial effects of its own, can be converted in the body to EPA, thus providing EPA’s beneficial effects. For this conversion to readily take place, however, depends on the presence and activity of an enzyme called delta-6-destaurase, which, in some individuals, is less available or less active than in others. In addition, delta-6-desaturase function is inhibited in diabetes and by the consumption of saturated fat and alcohol. For these reasons, higher amounts of ALA-rich flaxseeds or its oil must be consumed to provide the same benefits as the omega-3 fats found in the oil of cold-water fish.

Sounds good? Try some today! Get it at your local organic store or if you prefer supplementation get your flaxseed oil from your reliable supplier.


In-depth nutrient analysis:

Flaxseeds
(Note: “–” indicates data is unavailable)

amount

2.00 tbs

total weight

19.38 g

Basic Components

nutrient

amount

%DV

calories

95.33

5.30

calories from fat

59.29

calories from saturated fat

5.57

protein

3.78 g

7.56

carbohydrates

6.64 g

2.21

dietary fiber

5.41 g

21.64

soluble fiber

— g

insoluble fiber

— g

sugar – total

— g

monosaccharides

— g

disaccharides

— g

other carbs

— g

fat – total

6.59 g

10.14

saturated fat

0.62 g

3.10

mono fat

1.33 g

5.54

poly fat

4.35 g

18.12

trans fatty acids

0.00 g

cholesterol

0.00 mg

0.00

water

1.70 g

ash

0.68 g

Vitamins

nutrient

amount

%DV

vitamin A IU

0.00 IU

0.00

vitamin A RE

0.00 RE

A – carotenoid

0.00 RE

0.00

A – retinol

0.00 RE

A – beta carotene

0.00 mcg

thiamin – B1

0.03 mg

2.00

riboflavin – B2

0.03 mg

1.76

niacin – B3

0.27 mg

1.35

niacin equiv

0.27 mg

vitamin B6

0.18 mg

9.00

vitamin B12

0.00 mcg

0.00

biotin

— mcg

vitamin C

0.25 mg

0.42

vitamin D IU

— IU

vitamin D mcg

— mcg

vitamin E alpha equiv

0.97 mg

4.85

vitamin E IU

1.44 IU

vitamin E mg

0.97 mg

folate

53.86 mcg

13.46

vitamin K

0.00 mcg

0.00

pantothenic acid

0.30 mg

3.00

Minerals

nutrient

amount

%DV

boron

— mcg

calcium

38.56 mg

3.86

chloride

— mg

chromium

— mcg

copper

0.20 mg

10.00

fluoride

— mg

iodine

— mcg

iron

1.21 mg

6.72

magnesium

70.14 mg

17.54

manganese

0.64 mg

32.00

molybdenum

— mcg

phosphorus

96.49 mg

9.65

potassium

131.94 mg

3.77

selenium

1.07 mcg

1.53

sodium

6.59 mg

0.27

zinc

0.81 mg

5.40

Saturated Fats

nutrient

amount

%DV

4:0 butyric

0.00 g

6:0 caproic

0.00 g

8:0 caprylic

0.00 g

10:0 capric

0.00 g

12:0 lauric

0.00 g

14:0 myristic

0.00 g

15:0 pentadecanoic

0.00 g

16:0 palmitic

0.35 g

17:0 margaric

0.00 g

18:0 stearic

0.27 g

20:0 arachidic

0.00 g

22:0 behenate

0.00 g

24:0 lignoceric

0.00 g

Mono Fats

nutrient

amount

%DV

14:1 myristol

0.00 g

15:1 pentadecenoic

0.00 g

16:1 palmitol

0.00 g

17:1 heptadecenoic

0.00 g

18:1 oleic

1.33 g

20:1 eicosen

0.00 g

22:1 erucic

0.00 g

24:1 nervonic

0.00 g

Poly Fats

nutrient

amount

%DV

18:2 linoleic

0.84 g

18:3 linolenic

3.51 g

18:4 stearidon

0.00 g

20:3 eicosatrienoic

0.00 g

20:4 arachidon

0.00 g

20:5 EPA

0.00 g

22:5 DPA

0.00 g

22:6 DHA

0.00 g

Other Fats

nutrient

amount

%DV

omega 3 fatty acids

3.51 g

146.25

omega 6 fatty acids

0.84 g

Amino Acids

nutrient

amount

%DV

alanine

— g

arginine

— g

aspartate

— g

cystine

— g

glutamate

— g

glycine

— g

histidine

— g

isoleucine

— g

leucine

— g

lysine

— g

methionine

— g

phenylalanine

— g

proline

— g

serine

— g

threonine

— g

tryptophan

— g

tyrosine

— g

valine

— g

Other

nutrient

amount

%DV

alcohol

0.00 g

caffeine

0.00 mg

artif sweetener total

0.00 mg

aspartame

0.00 mg

saccharin

0.00 mg

sugar alcohol

— g

glycerol

— g

inositol

— g

mannitol

— g

sorbitol

— g

xylitol

— g

organic acids

— mg

acetic acid

— mg

citric acid

— mg

lactic acid

— mg

malic acid

— mg

choline

— mg

taurine

— mg

Note: The nutrient profiles provided in this website are derived from Food Processor for Windows, Version 7.60, by ESHA Research in Salem, Oregon, USA. Of the 21,629 food records contained in the ESHA foods database, most of them – including those of the World’s Healthiest Foods – lacked information for specific nutrients. The designation “–” was chosen to represent those nutrients for which there was no measurement included in the ESHA foods database.

References

http://www.healthcastle.com/flax.shtml

www.webmd.com/diet/features/benefits-of-flaxseed

www.essortment.com/all/whatisflaxsee_pfy.htm

http://www.whfoods.com/genpage.php?tname=foodspice&dbid=81

Recommended websites for further information

http://www.whfoods.com/genpage.php?tname=foodspice&dbid=81