+ Read on below for the reasons why the "good" things in this salad, may not be good for you.
I know how it is...when you're looking for a recipe, you just want it, without having to read through all the details with how they came up with it and how they've tried different versions, etc etc. I know, I'm with you. So without further adieu, the RECIPE. And then follows all the goodness on how you can adjust it for your womanly needs and why it may or may not be good for you. Having a say as to what goes in your body.........Empowerment is cool.
1 pound red or yellow watermelon, rind removed & cut in 1 inch chunks
4 heirloom tomatoes, halved (use multi colored to add pizazz to your salad)
2 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
2 Tbsp white (or traditional) balsamic vinegar
1/2 tsp salt (to taste)
Freshly ground pepper (to taste)
2 Tbsp fresh basil leaves, roughly chopped
4 ounces mild raw goat cheese, crumbled
1/4 cup chopped, raw, unsalted cashews
Mix watermelon and tomatoes together. Divide the mixture among plates.
Mix together the olive oil and vinegar. Drizzle each serving of the watermelon/tomato mix with the dressing.
Season with salt and pepper.
Top with the basil, goat cheese and cashews before serving.
How might you adjust this Summer Salad to meet your womanly needs? The Good and The Cautious.
Watermelon & Tomatoes:
- Watermelon and tomatoes are most notable for their content of Vitamin A (beta-carotene) and Vitamin C--both anti-oxidants.
- They also contain a large amount of lycopene, a bright red carotenoid pigment (giving them their color). Lycopene is also a powerful anti-oxidant. It is fat-soluble, so the oil in the salad will help to your body to absorb it better.
- Let's not forget that watermelons consist of ~91% water and tomatoes ~94%. Seeing that most of us could use more hydration, eating foods with high water content does count in your fluid intake.
- And if you have an overactive bladder, fear not, as watermelon is not a bladder irritant.
- Watermelon is on the FODMAP (Fermentable Oligo-Di-Monosaccharides and Polyols) list. So if you have digestive issues, especially, Small Intestinal Bacterial Overgrowth (SIBO), you may want to skip this salad, or just omit watermelon. Tomatoes on the other hand are low on the FODMAP content, so feast away.
- Tomatoes, however, are known to be an irritant to the bladder so if you have an overactive bladder or incontinence, you may want to omit tomatoes. Or you can keep them in and take a Prelief prior to eating or drinking acidic, bladder irritant foods such as tomatoes in order to help ease the bladder urge.
- Tomatoes are also nightshades and if you have arthritis or joint pain, you may want to omit these, as nightshades have been shown to contribute to joint inflammation in some.
- Basil is a natural anti-inflammatory. Basil extracts reduce inflammation by inhibiting pro-inflammatory cytokines (TNF-alpha and IL-1-alpha). This may be due to it's content of omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids, which have an anti-inflammatory effect. (Though our bodies can only convert 0.5-5% of plant based fatty acids into usable fatty acids, so best to get your greatest source of omega-3's from fish oil or seaweed/algae).
- Plus, it's got a lot of great flavor without any negative punch.
I couldn't find anything out there. If there's something you know of, let me know.
- If you are are not sensitive to dairy, it can be a good way to provide calcium via your diet. They're saying that it's best to get calcium from your diet rather than supplementing. This is due to the possibility of over supplementation leading to calcium deposits, including those in your arteries and raising the risk of cardiovascular disease. And we don't need that as we're heading into peri-menopause and menopause, because as estrogen levels are naturally dropping, we lose the cardiovascular protective effects of estrogen.
- Goat Cheese is thought to be less of a digestive irritant, likely due to it having less sugar content, or lactose. So if you can tolerate some cheeses, you may be able to tolerate goat cheese.
- Soft cheeses, such as goat cheese are particularly high in probiotics, including thermophillus, bifudus, bulgaricus and acidophilus. Buy it raw and unpasteurized for the probiotic benefits. In a recent study, mice were found to have protection from post-menopausal bone loss with treatment of the above probiotic strains.
- High fat, soft cheeses, such as goat cheese are found to be lower in FODMAP's and if tolerated, are ok to eat.
- Dairy is a very common food sensitivity and may cause a variety of symptoms in people (digestive, skin irritations, inflammation, and pain to name a few).
- It has been suggested that those with autoimmune disorders (MS, rheumatoid arthritis, lupus, Grave's, Hashimoto's thyroiditis) should eliminate dairy.
- Cashews contain anacardic acid which in a fairly recent review, was reported to inhibit the proliferation of breast cancer cells. It not only reduced proliferation of the cells, it actually killed them (apoptosis). This demonstrated a direct interaction with estrogen receptor binding. So there may be a hormonal benefit to eating cashews.
- Cashews also contain zinc, copper and iron, all of which are important in thyroid balance.
- They are also a source of phosphorus, magnesium and Vitamin K, which are important for bone building (in balance with calcium).
- They also contain healthy fats, such as monounsaturated fatty acids (MUFAs) and polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs) which have been shown to be beneficial in reducing fatty liver disease in post-menopausal women.
- You may have a known nut allergy, in which case you may want to omit these delightful pockets of goodness.
- You may also want to omit them if you have kidney stones, as they have oxalates which can make kidney issues worse.
- And just as with most good things, you want to eat moderately, as they are still a source of fat (even healthy fat) after all.
And that's the low down on this Summer Salad treat. Enough yapping. Get on to eating and enjoying the delights of summer. (Even though right now in the Bay Area, it feels a bit like February).
If you're wondering about other foods and their possible effects on you individually, please contact Tianna to see how we can help you bring more vitality to your diet so you can feel amazing.