Smorgasbord Health Column – Cook from Scratch to prevent nutritional deficiency with Sally Cronin and Carol Taylor – Vitamin B5 – Pantothenic Acid


In this series we look at cooking and your diet from a different perspective. Usually we emphasize the health benefits of food and how they can be incorporated into your diet. But, what happens if you do NOT include them in your diet.

We wanted to share with you what happens if your body is deprived of individual nutrients over an extended period of time.

Thankfully most of us eat reasonably well, with plenty of variety, but if you take a look at a week’s worth of meals, do you find that you are sticking to a handful of foods, all the time.

Variety is key to good health, to provide your body with as broad a spectrum of nutrients as possible that the body needs. Taking a supplement or relying on shakes and bars to provide your daily allowance of vitamins and nutrients is not in your body’s best interest. Giving it foods that the body can process and extract everything it needs is vital.

Over the next few months we are going to be working our way through the most essential of these nutrients and I will share the symptoms that you might experience if you are becoming deficient in the vitamin or mineral and list the foods where you can find the nutrient.

Carol Taylor is then going to provide you with some wonderful recipes that make best use of these foods… Cooked from Scratch.

Vitamin B5 – Pantothenic Acid

Pantothenic acid gets its name from the Greek word pantos, meaning everywhere; because it is available in such a wide variety of foods. The problem is that much of a foods content of B5 is lost through cooking; which in another reason for eating as many fruits and vegetables as possible in the raw state.

B5 is one of the eight water-soluble B vitamins which cannot be stored by the body and have to be replenished in your daily diet. We have already covered B1, B2, and B3 and B5 like the others plays an important role in the conversion of carbohydrates into glucose, which is burned to produce energy. They are also needed to breakdown fats and proteins as well as promoting the health of the nervous system, skin, hair, eyes and importantly this month, the liver.

Vitamin B5 has a number of roles in the body some more critical than others. One job that is vitally important is assisting in the manufacture of red blood cells as well as sex and stress related hormones. Without B5 our digestive tract would become unhealthy and we would be unable to use other vitamins as effectively. It is sometimes referred to as the ‘anti-stress’ vitamin because it is believed to enhance the activity of the immune system and help the body overcome stressful conditions.

Currently research is looking into the benefits of B5 and treatment for elevated cholesterol but there are other areas where the vitamin may be beneficial.

Some studies are indicating that B5 may speed up wound healing especially following surgery and as part of a B-complex supplement it may help recovery from major burns.

Arthritis has also come under the microscope as blood tests taken from arthritis sufferers’ show that they were suffering from a deficiency of pantothenic acid, but more study will be needed to confirm this.

There are rumours that taking B5 can help with wrinkles and stop your hair greying but this is not proven.

What are the symptoms of deficiency?

If you are following a healthy eating plan with lots of fresh fruit, vegetables and wholegrains you will be unlikely to be suffering from B5 deficiency.

If you were suffering from a mild to moderate deficiency you might suffer from:

  • tiredness
  • headaches
  • nausea
  • tingling in the hands
  • depression
  • abdominal pains
  • insomnia
  • burning feet
  • muscle weakness
  • cramps.

In extreme cases personality changes can take place as well as heart problems.

What are the best food sources for Vitamin B5

Although offal has gone out of fashion, they are great sources of Vitamin Bs.. including B5.

  • Chicken and beef liver
  • Avocados
  • Sunflower seeds
  • Shitake Mushooms but all mushrooms have good amounts
  • Dairy including Cheese
  • Egg yolks
  • beef and poultry
  • shellfish
  • Salmon and other oily fish
  • Trout
  • Peanuts
  • Lentils
  • Strawberries.

Time to hand you over to Carol Taylor who has been creating dishes that include ingredients that are great sources of this vitamin.

B5… As Sally has explained is one of the water soluble vitamins thus much of it is lost through cooking hence why we should eat as many vegetables as possible in their raw state…

Also as it is water soluble the vitamin will be lost if the food is boiled…

These spring rolls are very popular here in Thailand both with the children and adults and are found on street food stalls everywhere.

Ingredients for the peanut dipping sauce.

• 1 garlic clove
• 1 thumb-sized piece of organic ginger
• 2 tbsp gluten-free tamari or regular soy sauce
• 2 tbsp maple syrup
• 2 tbsp fresh lime juice
• ⅓ (85 g) cup peanut butter( to make your own)which is so easy https://carolcooks2.com/2017/08/09/healthy-eating-peanuts/
• ¼ (60 ml) cup water (more or less as needed)

Ingredients for the Spring Rolls.

• 1 cup cooked rice noodles
• 5-8 rice paper sheets
• 1 carrot
• 1 avocado
• ½ cucumber
• ½ red pepper
• 5-8 lettuce leaves or salad greens of your choice
• 1 handful fresh basil
• 1 handful fresh cilantro

Let’s Cook!

To make the peanut sauce: blend or mix together all the ingredients until smooth.

To make the wraps: cut all the veggies into thin strips which is an art I have learnt here or use a spiraliser if you have one.

Put the rice paper sheets, one at a time, in warm water so they soften. Then place them on a large plate and carefully dry them with a kitchen towel.

Arrange your fillings in the middle of the paper and sprinkle 1 tsp of the peanut sauce over the veggies. Fold over two ends then wrap it up like a burrito, making it as tight as possible.

It took me a while to get a hang of it, so keep trying it is not easy and watching the Thais it is second nature even the kids are better than me…ha-ha Don’t worry if you get a little hole it happens as you can see…Practice makes perfect.

N.B…I often add prawns to ours which takes the taste up a notch…One of our favourites.

Chicken Livers are one of the best sources of vitamin B5 and something many people don’t like…Chicken livers are the favoured livers here and more often cooked with spices.

I also make pate which the Thais love but is not something they usually make with the livers.  I have introduced that to the Thais I know, as well as Christmas pudding which they have come to love…

SAM_7988

Chicken Liver Red Curry with Green Beans Recipe

Alternatively, I just quickly fry the chicken livers in some butter and olive oil, salt and pepper and serve with onions and mashed potatoes a dish that hubby loves…He is not usually a spicy person but I think his love of liver overcomes the spiciness…haha.

This lovely Avocado and mango salsa is fresh and vibrant and can be paired with chicken, salmon, tuna it is packed full of fresh, B5 vitamins and tastes amazing…

Ingredients

• 1 avocado, halved, pitted, peeled, and diced medium. …
• 1 ripe mango, peeled, pitted, and diced medium.
• 1 small red onion, diced small.
• 1/4 cup finely chopped fresh cilantro leaves.
• 1/2 to 1 red chilli finely chopped remove seeds if required
• 2 tbsp fresh lime juice.
• 1 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil.
• A pinch of sea salt to taste

Photo credit: MarioMelendez on VisualHunt / CC BY-NC-SA

Combine all the ingredients in a bowl and chill until required…An easy healthy accompaniment to your food…

Salmon one of my favourite fish and packed with B5 I always wrap mine in foil and cook in the oven to help retain the vitamins…

Cajun Salmon with Salted Lime Butter…

Ingredients for the Salted Lime Butter.

• 4 tbsp butter unsalted
• ½ Lime zested
• A pinch of sea salt

Method

Mix the lime zest and salt into the butter, then keep in the fridge until required either in a ramekin or make a roll and slice of as required.

Ingredients for the Cajun Spice Topping…

• 2 tbsp of dried oregano
• 2 tbsp garlic powder…
• 2 tbsp paprika
• 2 tbsp mineral or sea salt
• 1 tbsp black pepper
• 1 tbsp dried thyme
• 1 tsp cayenne pepper
• 1 tbsp onion powder
• 1 tsp chilli flakes ( optional)

To Prepare

  • Mix all the dried ingredients together …I always add fresh garlic and chopped onion to mine so I make my mix excluding the onion and garlic and then when required I add the fresh ingredients…
  • Place the salmon on foil and add the amount of  Cajun topping you require
  • seal the foil and cook in oven at 180 for 10-15 mins until cooked
  • I open the foil for the last 5 minutes of cooking and add my lime butter…
  • Serve with rice or noodles and freshly steamed vegetables or a nice avocado and mango salsa as above which helps cut through the Cajun spices.

Another way to eat your salmon is in this lovely soup…

A take on Tom Yum Soup… This is one of my favourite Thai soups and so easy to make from scratch. It also brings back memories of a certain lady…Keeleigh who when she visited us could not get enough of this fabulous soup…I am sure she would also love this version…

Ingredients

• 2 litres of water
• 4 stalks of lemon grass
• 1-inch chunk of galangal
• 10 kaffir lime leaves
• 10 Thai chillies
• 5 cloves of garlic
• 85 gm salmon per person
• 100 gm noodles of your choice per person
• 300 grams of oyster mushrooms
• 2 medium tomatoes cut into quarters.
• 5-6 shallots halved if really small if a little bigger quartered
• 1 and a half tsp of sugar
• 7 – 10 tbsp of fish sauce (depending on your taste)
• Juice of 5 -8 limes.
• A handful of cilantro ( Coriander)
• Half hardboiled egg per person…optional

N.B I recommend using the lowest amount of limes and fish sauce and Taste! Adjust if necessary as everyone’s taste varies.

Let’s Cook!

  • The first thing to do is put about 2 litres of water in a large pot to boil.
  • Then I like to start by squeezing my limes. This is not the first step of the recipe, but it’s best to have your limes squeezed so when you need them later, you don’t need to rush to squeeze them all.
  • Take your stalks of lemongrass, and first tear off the outermost leaf and throw it out. Then, I like to use a rolling-pin or the handle end of a knife to lightly pound the lemongrass to release the flavours. Then just slice it diagonally into 1-inch strips or so.
  • Take about 1 thumb-sized chunk of the root part of galangal, and chop it into slices.
  • Coarsely break about 10 kaffir lime leaves – no need to cut them, just tear them – which is going to help release their flavour.
  • Peel about 5 cloves of garlic.
  • I used about 10 Thai birds eye chillies for this recipe, but you can use however many you’d like. First, take off the stem, and then you can either just slice them in two pieces, or give them a little pound on your cutting board like I did (just be careful of flying seeds). You can also remove the seeds if you still like the chilli flavour but not as much heat.
  • Throw the lemongrass, galangal, kaffir lime leaves, garlic and chillies into the water.
  • You can put the lid on just so it starts to boil which releases the herb flavours quicker.
  • Boil your soup with all the herbs in it for about 10 minutes.
  • Then add your mushrooms, which you should pre-rinse beforehand.
  • Cook for 4-5 minutes.
  • Add tomatoes and onions. Cook for further 6-8 minutes.
  • Now add your noodles and after 2 mins add your salmon and cook for a further 5 mins until salmon is just poached…
  • Remove from heat and gently stir in fish sauce, lime juice, sugar and cilantro.
    Taste and adjust if necessary.
  • This delicious soup is now ready to serve. Garnish with half a boiled egg and some coriander…

Enjoy!

If you are doing an original Tom Yum with prawns, only add your 500 gm of prepared prawns and cook for 2-3 mins max ( if overcooked the prawns will sink to the bottom of the pan. If you get any scum on the surface of soup it’s from the prawns then just skim off with a spoon. Then remove from heat and gently stir in fish sauce, lime juice, sugar and cilantro.

Taste and adjust if necessary.

Enjoy!

I hope these recipes have given you some ideas how to maximise your B5 intake…

Until next time have a lovely Easter and have some chocolate for me as we can’t get Easter eggs here…xx

My thanks to Carol for preparing these delicious dishes to ensure you and your family are obtaining adequate amounts of vitamins such as B5 in your diet. 

You can find out more about Carol and catch up with her Food and Cookery Column HERE

Connect to Carol via her blog: https://carolcooks2.com/

Thank you for dropping in today and if you have any questions for either of us then please do not hesitate to ask in the comments. Your feedback is always welcome.

You will find me with some other blogging friends on a relatively new, and friendlier site called MeWe…. mewe.com/i/sallycronin

And Carol and I are both in the group where you can share your blog posts https://mewe.com/join/authorsbloggerscircleabcgroup

 

Smorgasbord Health Column with Sally Cronin and Carol Taylor – Cook from Scratch to prevent nutritional deficiency – Vitamin B1- Thiamin


In this series we look at cooking and your diet from a different perspective. Usually we emphasize the health benefits of food and how they can be incorporated into your diet. But, what happens if you do NOT include them in your diet.

We wanted to share with you what happens if your body is deprived of individual nutrients over an extended period of time.

Thankfully most of us eat reasonably well, with plenty of variety, but if you take a look at a week’s worth of meals, do you find that you are sticking to a handful of foods, all the time.

Variety is key to good health, to provide your body with as broad a spectrum of nutrients as possible that the body needs. Taking a supplement or relying on shakes and bars to provide your daily allowance of vitamins and nutrients is not in your body’s best interest. Giving it foods that the body can process and extract everything it needs is vital.

Over the next few months we are going to be working our way through the most essential of these nutrients and I will share the symptoms that you might experience if you are becoming deficient in the vitamin or mineral and list the foods where you can find the nutrient.

Carol Taylor is then going to provide you with some wonderful recipes that make best use of these foods… Cooked from Scratch.

Vitamin B1- Thiamin

Vitamin B1 (Thiamin) is a water-soluble vitamin. This means that along with the other B vitamins and Vitamin C it travels through the blood stream and any excess is eliminated in our urine. The body cannot store thiamin but it is found in tissues within the body such as in the liver, heart, kidneys and the nervous system where it binds to enzymes.

This does mean that these types of vitamins need to be replaced from our food continuously.

Thiamin helps fuel our bodies by converting blood sugar into energy. Every cell in the body requires it to form the fuel we run on called adenosine triphosphate (ATP). It also keeps our mucus membranes healthy and with other B vitamins is essential for a healthy nervous and cardiovascular system as well as muscular function. It is also important for healthy skin, hair and our eyes.

Deficiency of B1

It is very rare in this day and age in the western world to find a person who is deficient in Thiamin. A lack of it can cause a disease called beriberi with symptoms of rapid heartbeat, muscle wasting, nerve problems and confusion. The body is unable to efficiently digest carbohydrates which results in a build-up of pyruvic acid in the bloodstream leading to the symptoms.

There have been babies who have suffered from this due to a lack of the vitamin in their formula and people who drink excessive amounts of alcohol can also develop beriberi.

Most commonly it is found in elderly people who have general malabsorption problems or a restricted diet. Some children with congenital heart disease may suffer a deficiency, as can patients undergoing kidney dialysis who should be prescribed B1 by their doctor.

A deficiency is also likely in someone who has an eating disorder, particularly anorexia or who suffers from Crohn’s disease where there is a general malabsorption of nutrients as a whole.

Some of the mild symptoms that might indicate that you are becoming deficient in B1.

1. Frequent headaches
2. General Fatigue
3. Regular nausea
4. Irritability
5. Mild depression

More Severe symptoms of a deficiency which might indicate Beriberi

1. Confusion
2. Burning sensation or tingling in the hands and feet,
3. Trouble breathing
4. Uncontrolled eye movements.

As a supplement it is usually taken as part of a B-complex formulation and does work better with vitamin B2 and B3. As with all supplements that could have an effect on your health, you should first look at your diet and make changes to ensure that you are getting the nutrient from sources your body recognises. Food is always the best source, but if you are in one of the risk groups then do consult a doctor about your need for supplementation.

The best food sources B1

  • All wholegrains such as brown rice, oats and whole wheat cereals and bread, beans, sunflower seeds, lentils sesame seeds, nuts,
  • Fruit such as pineapple, watermelon, Vegetables including asparagus, spinach, squash,
  • Protein oily fish, eggs, lean ham and pork.

Time to hand over to Carol to turn these vitamin B1 rich ingredients into delicious dishes to include regularly in your diet.

Good morning from sunny Thailand although we had the mother of storms last night and we are expecting a few more as when the temperatures start to rise we get the tropical storms as well but generally over night and it is also the reason why our vegetation is green and lush it gets the best of both worlds.

I am already loving this new series that Sally and myself are bringing to you…It was the brainchild of Sally and I think it is a great idea…Although I know a fair bit about cooking and food I am the first to admit that although I know what is good for me I don’t always know why…If a doctor or health practitioner informed me I was short on a certain Vitamin and needed to include more of it in my diet I wouldn’t always know where to start…

The recipes I will be providing for each vitamin will help with this and will include everyday foods which will help boost any given deficiency …Today I am looking at ingredients which contain or convert to vitamin B1 … All these recipes are made in my own kitchen and tested by me and my family…

Starting with this lovely Mackerel dish…Mackerel is an oily fish and a very popular fish here it can be found on all the fish stalls and BBQ’S on all the street corners… Often just eaten with sticky rice and a spicy dip it is also made into lovely salads both here and in Mediterranean cuisine.

Smoked Mackerel, Broccoli and Almond salad.

Ingredients:

  • 4 smoked mackerel fillets
  • 300 gm tender stem broccoli
  • 300 gm purple sprouting broccoli
  • 1 red onion
  • 2 tbsp capers plus 1 tbsp of caper juice
  • 1 lime juice and zest
  • 60 gm toasted almond flakes
  • 60 gm toasted walnuts chopped
  • ¼ tsp salt

This recipe will make enough for 4/5 persons and I have also included 2 different dressings. The thing I love about these recipes is that you can scale it down for 1 or 2 persons.

Dressing 1 …A yoghurt dressing.

  • 4 tbsp Natural Yoghurt
  • 3-4 tbsp extra virgin Olive Oil
  • 20 gm chopped fresh herbs of your choice I used coriander, dill and mint.
  • Zest and juice of 1 lime
  • Flaky salt and freshly ground pepper to season.

To make just combine all the ingredients together and chill until required.

Dressing 2…Apple which was our favourite…

  • 50 ml apple cider vinegar
  • 100 ml extra virgin olive oil
  • ½ an apple peeled and finely chopped or julienned.
  • 20 gm chopped fresh herbs of your choice
  • ½ tbsp runny honey
  • Flaky salt and freshly ground pepper to taste.

Let’s Cook!

  1. Mix together the onions, capers, caper vinegar, salt and lime juice and zest set to one side to allow flavours to develop.
  2. Make your dressing by whisking or blending ingredients together and put in the fridge until required.
  3. Steam the prepared broccoli until tender 5-7 mins.
  4. Skin and flake your mackerel.
  5. When ready to serve toss your salad ingredients and mackerel gently together with ½ your chosen dressing and ½ of the nuts.
  6. Arrange in a serving bowl or individual plates and drizzle with the remainder of the dressing and scatter the nuts over the top.

Serve with toasted sourdough bread drizzled with some olive oil and rubbed with some roasted garlic.

We all loved the apple dressing the most as the apples give it a tart fresh flavor and cut through the grease of the mackerel…

Another favourite fish dish is …Yellow tail fish with a sesame seed crust.

The Yellow Tail fish or Amber Jack is native to the North East Pacific from Japan to Hawaii. It is also not related to the Yellow tail Tuna.

In Japan, this fish is eaten cooked or raw and known as Hamachi or Buri.

As you know I am firmly in the camp of eating healthily and choose my fish carefully …I steer clear of farmed fish and only eat locally caught straight off the boats or fish which is responsibly sourced. It doesn’t mean however that it is expensive which a lot of people seem to think …You can buy fish responsibly and at good prices by researching your local markets or even buying frozen.

This fish has extra lean, firm white meat and if you want a lighter meal then it is a lovely tasting fish with a mild flavour.

Ingredients for two servings.

  • 2 x 150 g pieces yellow tail fish or any other firm white fish.
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • Sea salt to season…..I use pink Himalayan or mineral salt which is farmed close to my home.
  • 1 egg white whisked until it is foamy.
  • 3 tbsp sesame seeds.
  • Oil for frying…I use coconut oil.

For chilli, lime and soy sauce.

  • 60 ml Soy sauce
  • 2 tbsp honey……I use honey from the comb
  • 1 clove garlic, crushed
  • 1 chilli deseeded and finely sliced…guess who leaves the seeds in? Moi
  • Juice of 1 lime
  • A drizzle of sesame seed oil
  • Fresh coriander leaves to serve

Let’s Cook!

  1. Preheat the oven to 180 °C.
  2. Season the yellow tail fillets with a little salt and freshly milled black pepper. I cut the fish into steaks…
  3. Dip the seasoned fish into the egg white and coat both sides with sesame seeds.
  4. Heat a little coconut oil (or oil of your choice) in a frying pan and sear the fish for about a minute on each side or until the sesame seeds are golden brown. Remove the fish and place in a roasting pan.
  5. Cook in the oven for about 10 minutes or until the fish is just cooked through.
  6. Meanwhile, make the soy sauce reduction. Place the soy sauce, honey, garlic, chilli, lime juice and sesame oil in a small saucepan and bring to the boil.
  7. Cook for about 2–3 minutes or until the sauce has reduced slightly and has thickened so it coats the back of your spoon.
  8. Remove the garlic clove and set to one side…
  9. Once the fish is cooked, remove it from the oven and serve immediately, drizzled with a little soy sauce reduction.

Serve with brown or wild rice, steamed pak Choy or spinach and fresh lime wedges.

Enjoy!

Both Pineapple and watermelon contain the vitamin B1 and are very popular fruits here either eaten after a meal just as they are or maybe with a little spicy dipping sauce…

Pineapple also lends itself well to being cooked or added to a stir fry or curry… Spicy pineapple being a favourite here it is quick and easy to do…We also love it pickled…Yes you can pickle most things…ha-ha

Ingredients:

  • 300 gm of fresh pineapple cut into smallish chunks
  • A handful of shallots finely sliced
  • 1 pickled jalapeno sliced
  • 1/4 cup of water
  • 1 1/2 cups of white vinegar
  • The juice of 2 fresh limes
  • 1 tbsp sugar
  • 1/2 tbsp salt
  • A handful of chopped coriander

You will need 3 sterilised jars with lids.

Let’s Cook!

Heat the vinegar, water, sugar, salt, limes and Jalapenos together and bring to a rolling boil. Turn off the heat add the shallots and leave the mixture to cool down.

Did you know? Watermelon is not only lovely in a smoothie or just as it is and it also comes not only in red, but yellow… As you know I also believe that you should Waste not! Want Not! Water melon rinds are great pickled…

Even my Thai family liked these although they did suggest adding tamarind…Thais often don’t like our pickles as they find them too vinegary but loved these… I loved that they offered a suggestion which is how good dishes evolve.

Fruity Fridays…On A Sunday! Watermelon.

Lastly Pork is a good source of the B1 Vitamin and this quick easy stir fry incorporates pork and a dark green aka Kale and a firm family favourite

Ingredients:

  • 2 Belly Pork Strips or you could use loin or shoulder sliced if you didn’t want to wait while the belly pork cooks.
  • 8 Large leaves of Kale.
  • 3/4 cloves Garlic. squashed with the flat blade of a knife.
  • 2/3 birds eye chillies.
  • 2 tbsp Oyster Sauce
  • 1 tbsp Soy Sauce
  • 2/3 shakes of Maggi Sauce.
  • Half tbsp. Oil.

Let’s Cook!

  1. Cook Belly Pork in the oven until tender and crispy. For about 30 mins.
  2. I normally cook on about 180/200 degrees to start and then reduce heat slightly to160 degrees. When the pork is tender turn up the heat to crisp the pork. When nice and crispy remove the pork from the oven and chop into bite pieces.
  3. Heat the wok or large fry pan and add half tablespoon oil.
  4. Add crushed garlic and chillies, add little hot water and cook for 1 min…at this point the chillies may overpower you..Ha ha….turn on expel fan and add chopped Kale.
  5. Stems first if using as they take longer to cook. I use stems of Kale also if they are quite thick slice into 2-inch pieces.
  6. Cook for 2 mins and add remainder of Kale leaves and turn over a few times ….I use fish slice as I find it easier to just turn kale over.
  7. Add 2 tbsp Oyster Sauce and 1 tbsp Soy along with few shakes of Maggi (seasoning Sauce). Taste and adjust the seasoning if necessary. Cook for further 2/3 mins.
  8. Add crispy Pork turn or stir a few times to mix.

Serve with brown or wild rice

Enjoy!

©Recipes Carol Taylor

I hope these recipes have given you an idea of how to incorporate the Vitamin B1 into your diet.

Until next time when it will be Vitamin B 2…

You can find out more about Carol and catch up with her Food and Cookery Column HERE

Connect to Carol via her blog: https://carolcooks2.com/

Thank you for dropping in today and if you have any questions for either of us then please do not hesitate to ask in the comments. Your feedback is always welcome.

 

As I move from Facebook to share my posts, you will find me with some other blogging friends on a relatively new, and friendlier site called MeWe….you can find me on mewe.com/i/sallycronin