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As the owner of Everyday Gourmet, Sally designs unique, customized menus for her clients based upon their preferences and dietary needs, then shops, prepares and packages meals so they can enjoy gourmet food at their convenience, everyday.

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In The News

By Chef Sally
Published in "Ladera Ranch Magazine" Jan/Feb 2008

Determined to eat healthier in 2008?  Good for you! Here are a few tips that will help you to be successful in that endeavor. One way to reach that goal, start roughing it!

Today’s nutritional news tells us fiber is an important part of a healthy diet.  Depending on age and gender, adults should consume at least 21-38 grams of dietary fiber per day and children ages 1 and older should consume at least 19 grams per day, as outlined by the Harvard School of Public Health. Yet the average American consumes only 15 grams of dietary fiber per day.  

So what is fiber is and how do we incorporate more of it? Dietary fiber is defined as carbohydrates that cannot be digested. These are the “good carbs”. Sources include fresh fruit such as apples and pears, blueberries and strawberries, beans, whole grains, brown rice, and vegetables such as carrots and zucchini, just to name a few.

For these cooler January and February days try my recipe for Smokey Black Bean soup. It’s a healthy blend of black beans, tomatoes and pureed pumpkin which provide a good dose of fiber. It also has the deep flavors of smoked spices -  smoked paprika, smoked black pepper and ground chipotle pepper. Never used smoked spices? They are a wonderful addition to your pantry and can be ordered via the internet from sites such as and Pumpkin you say? Pumpkin is full of vitamin A, potassium and fiber. It’s not just for pumpkin pie at Thanksgiving but a great addition to a healthy diet as well as a nice change.

Another way to increase your fiber consumption is to eat more vegetables. For a healthy afternoon snack keep baggies of cut up carrots, celery, zucchini, jicama, broccoli, radishes and cauliflower for enjoying with Feta-Dill Dip. This dip is made with Greek-style non-fat (or low-fat) yogurt, low-fat Feta cheese and herbs. It works equally as well for cocktail hour with a tray of fresh vegetables and whole grain crackers. It’s creamy, tangy and helps those vegetables go down really easy.

Need more ideas for increasing your fiber intake? Switch to brown rice from white rice.  Change from white bread to whole grain styles. Switch from white pasta to one of the new multi-grain pastas which are nutty tasting and satisfying.  The newer market offerings don’t taste like cardboard. My clients and family like Barilla Multigrain and Ronzoni Healthy Harvest to name two available brands. Try the recipe for Penne with Sausage and Creamy Pumpkin Sauce and use a multigrain penne pasta.  I use fully-cooked chicken sausage for faster and healthier preparation.

Besides increasing “good carbs”, an easy way to increase dietary fiber in your diet is to add a fiber supplement. There are a variety on the market with names such as Benefiber, Fiber Choice, Metamucil and Citrucel. For me, adding Benefiber to my breakfast yogurt along with a handful of healthy granola has helped me accomplish my goal of increased fiber intake. My husband just mixes his into water. It disappears quickly and we never know it’s there. I hope some of these suggestions help you to reach your goal of eating healthier in 2008.

Everyday Gourmet | Personal Chef Services
Chef Sally Cameron | Orange County, California
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