Ask the Dietitian
Adding Vitamins and Minerals
Q. What are some of the best foods to incorporate into my diet to help ensure I’m getting a good amount of iron, calcium and vitamins?
Michelle Davis, RD, LDN: If you’re looking to increase your iron consumption with food, meat, poultry and fish are great sources of heme iron — the type of iron most readily absorbed in our body. In addition, foods such as red, yellow and orange peppers are high in vitamin C, which enhances absorption of iron in the body. Try this recipe for a quick and easy meal packed with iron and vitamin C!
Balsamic Chicken Breast with Peppers and Onions
Serves 4 to 6
4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
Salt and pepper to taste
3 tbsp olive oil, divided
4 cups thinly sliced peppers (red, orange, yellow)
1 medium onion, sliced thin
4 cloves garlic, chopped fine
1/4 cup fresh basil
4 tbsp balsamic vinegar
Season chicken with salt and pepper. In a large skillet, sauté chicken in 2 tablespoons of olive oil over medium/high heat, turning once for a total of about 8 minutes or until golden brown. Transfer chicken to a plate and set aside.
Add remaining tablespoon of oil to the skillet and cook peppers and onions, stirring often until just softened. Add garlic and stir for about one minute. Stir in basil and vinegar.
Return chicken to skillet; reduce heat to low and simmer until chicken is cooked through (about 3 to 5 more minutes). Add additional salt/pepper to taste, if desired. Serve and enjoy!
And, if you’re craving a nutrient-packed snack or appetizer, this dip is packed with calcium and protein from the Greek yogurt, as well as monounsaturated fats and a variety of vitamins and minerals from the avocado. Pair it with a rainbow of fresh vegetables and/or whole grain pita for a nutrient dense yet delicious dish!
Avocado, Mint and Yogurt Dip
Serves about 6 (1/4 cup servings)
1 avocado, peeled, pitted, and cut into chunks
1 cup plain fat free Greek yogurt
1 tsp fresh lime juice
1/2 tsp kosher salt
1/4 cup sliced fresh mint leaves, divided
1 tbsp pistachio oil or extra-virgin olive oil
In a medium bowl, mash together avocado, yogurt, lime juice, and salt until creamy. Fold in 3 tablespoons of mint leaves, drizzle with oil, and top with remaining mint.
Enjoy with chopped up veggies of your choice or toasted whole grain pita!
Michelle Davis is a bariatric nutritionist in the Weight Loss Surgery Center at BIDMC.
Above content provided by Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center. For advice about your medical care, consult your doctor.
Posted April 2013