Healthy Lasagna for Busy Times

Here’s a dish you can prepare ahead as a handy meal during these busy holiday weeks. Today’s Health-e-Recipe for Turkey Lasagna is easy, tasty and can be stored in individual portions in your freezer for when you don’t have time to cook.

Using whole-wheat lasagna noodles adds fiber to this recipe. Low-sodium tomato sauce such as marinara is always a good choice, because processed tomatoes have higher levels of the phytochemical lycopene, found by scientists to possibly protect against prostate cancer.

Ground turkey is a healthful substitute for red meat and processed meat like sausage: Eating more than 18 ounces of red meat weekly and eating any processed meat is linked to increased colon cancer risk in AICR’s expert report. Enjoy this combo of spinach and ground turkey — you’ll rarely find it in the grocery store or a restaurant. It’s seasoned with onion and oregano — two more cancer-fighting foods.

The cheese in this recipe is low-fat and the amounts are calculated to include just enough to make your lasagna delicious while keeping calories within reason. Click here to subscribe to AICR’s weekly Health-e-Recipes.


Secret Agent Pancakes

Blueberry and Flaxseed Pancakes, today’s Health-e-Recipe, is the perfect foil for getting your day off to a healthy start. They are so delicious that you and your breakfast  companions will never suspect they contain flaxseed, a potential cancer-fighting ingredient, which simply adds to the heartiness of the buckwheat and whole-wheat flours — both healthy grains that supply protease inhibitors, and phytic acid.

Flaxseed and whole grains both contain lignans, a compound scientists are investigating for protection against prostate and breast cancers. And who hasn’t heard praises sung for blueberries in recent years?

If you can’t find fresh, try unsweetened frozen blueberries, thawed out first (some stores carry dried blueberries as well). Anthocyanins and delphinidin are just two of the many blueberry phytochemicals that scientists are finding to be excellent health protectors against cell damage that may precede cancer. So make these pancakes a regular in your household. You’ll find other recipes using flaxseed, whole grains and blueberries by visiting the AICR Test Kitchen. Click here to subscribe to weekly Health-e-Recipes.


A Little Treat with A Big Taste

How can a high-fat food be part of a healthy diet? When it’s a nut. Nuts have unsaturated fats that are high in calories but healthy for your heart. Today’s Health-e-Recipe for Almond Fig Bars was devised to give you maximum taste and nutrition in each bite so you’re satisfied without eating too many.

That’s a tall order, but the orange zest and almond extract give these chewy bars rich flavor, while the dried figs provide natural sweetness. The figs and whole-wheat flour provide more dietary fiber than you’d usually get in a small serving of most baked goods, while the almonds offer crunch, protein and vitamin E.

Although they are high in fat, almonds and other nuts are nutritious foods. The omega-3 fats in walnuts made headlines for possible cancer prevention. With nuts, just rein in your serving size. For almonds, 23 whole nuts equal a 1-ounce serving and have 163 calories and 14 grams of fat.

Chopped or slivered nuts can be toasted to bring out their flavor so you only need to add a small amount to a recipe: place a tablespoon-full in a dry skillet over medium-high heat and stir constantly for 2 minutes until they are fragrant and golden — then toss them into salad, cereal, smoothies, soups, whole grains and steamed vegetables. Test your nut knowledge by taking our quiz. Click here to subscribe to weekly Health-e-Recipes from AICR’s Test Kitchen.