Many people with multiple sclerosis (MS) have heat and temperature sensitivity. Hot weather, running a fever, strenuous exercise or taking a hot bath or shower can cause a temporary worsening of symptoms. The last thing you probably want to do the mercury rises this summer is turn on your stove or stand over a hot burner. Fortunately, many healthy meals can be made quickly without ever cranking up the heat in the kitchen.
Each week for the next four weeks, I will share a new no-cook recipe; each with in a healthy, low fat diet. Each recipe will highlight one ingredient as a nutritional standout with an explanation for why these foods should be included in your diet. They all make about 4 servings, but can be adjusted up or down as needed, and are ready in 20 minutes or less.
This summer, don’t let the heat be an excuse for skipping a healthy meal and going to the drive through. Instead, enjoy the air conditioning at the grocery store and pick up supplies for one of these healthy meals.
Let’s start with a simple salad containing nutritious whole grains:
Recipe: Zucchini and White Bean Salad with Whole Grains
Super food ingredient: Whole Grains
Whole grains are a great source of fiber, vitamins and minerals. Studies show that whole grain intake is protective against cancer, cardiovascular disease, Type 2 diabetes and obesity.
- ¼ cup olive oil
- 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
- ¼ teaspoon (or to taste) black pepper
- 2 medium zucchini, halved and thinly sliced
- 1 15.5 ounce can low sodium white beans, drained
- 1 small shallot, thinly sliced
- ½ cup roasted almonds, chopped
- ¼ cup fresh dill
- 1 cup quick cooking whole grains such as bulgur or quinoa
- 4 ounces fat free feta cheese crumbles
- In a large bowl, whisk together the olive oil, vinegar, and pepper. Add the zucchini, beans, shallot, almonds, and dill and toss to combine. Let stand, tossing occasionally, until the zucchini slightly softens, about 10 minutes.
- Meanwhile, place your whole grain in a large heatproof bowl. Add 2 cups boiling water, cover and let stand until tender, about 15 minutes, drain if not all the water as been absorbed.
- Serve your grain topped with the zucchini salad and a sprinkle of the crumbled feta cheese.
For more nutrition and wellness tips for multiple sclerosis, check out my other blog posts or visit the Swedish Multiple Sclerosis Center.