My Personal Weight-Loss
BY DANA JACOBI
FOR THE AMERICAN INSTITUTE FOR CANCER RESEARCH
Last year, in addition to my
usual work, I finished another cookbook. (Stay tuned for more
about that.) Thanks to all the tempting food I cooked, followed
by many sedentary hours writing, I gained weight, too.
Serious about taking off these
unacceptable pounds, I have a plan. It starts with exercising,
specifically walking 30 to 60 minutes a day five times a week.
As an exercise wimp, taking this commitment one week at a time,
I aim to meet this goal for a month.
Next comes portion control.
I am measuring everything I eat, using cups, measuring spoons
(especially for fats), and a scale. Consuming fiber is also high
on my list because it helps me feel full. Sweet potatoes, corn
and apples, all good fiber sources, are my planned treats because
they can satisfy my sweet tooth, too.
The experimental part of my
weight loss program is using chile peppers. I know from experience
that eating hot food is more satisfying and that it makes me
feel good (presumably because substances in chiles stimulate
the brain to release feel-good endorphins.) According to some
scientific studies, the capsaicin in chiles may temporarily rev
up your metabolism so that for a time after eating them, your
body burns calories faster. Only time will tell if this truly
will help. But if youd like to join me in this experiment,
this soup is one of the chile-charged dishes
I am enjoying while working on the sensible goal of losing four
pounds in four weeks.
Chicken Soup -Makes
- 1 corn tortilla, torn in 1-inch
- 3 cups fat-free, reduced-sodium
chicken broth, divided
- 1 Tbsp. canola oil
- 1 small onion, chopped
- 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
- 1/2 tsp. ground ancho chile
(can use regular chili powder)
- 1/4-1/2 tsp. ground chipotle
- 1 Tbsp. dried oregano
- 1 (15 oz.) can crushed tomatoes
- 1 cup chopped butternut squash,
in 1/2-inch pieces
- 3/4 cup frozen cut green beans
- 1 small green bell pepper,
- 1 (15 oz.) can great northern
beans, rinsed and drained
- 1 cup cooked chicken breast,
torn into bite-size pieces
- Salt and freshly ground black
pepper, to taste
- 1 lime, cut in 4 wedges, for
- 1/4 cup chopped cilantro leaves,
In a blender, whirl torn tortilla
with 1 cup of broth until tortilla is pureed and soup becomes
a cloudy liquid. Set aside.
Heat oil in large saucepan
over medium-high heat. Add onion and cook, stirring often, until
translucent, 5 minutes. Add garlic and cook, stirring often,
until onion is soft, 3 minutes longer.
Stir in ground ancho and chipotle
chiles until they smell fragrant. Pour in tortilla and broth
mixture and bring to a boil, 3 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Add oregano, crushed tomatoes, remaining broth, squash, green
beans and green pepper. Bring to boil, reduce heat and simmer,
covered, for 20 minutes.
Add canned beans and chicken
and simmer, uncovered, until heated through, about 8 minutes.
Add salt and pepper to taste.
To serve, ladle soup into deep
bowls. Add a wedge of lime on rim of each bowl, and sprinkle
top with chopped cilantro. Serve immediately.
Per serving: 180 calories,
4 g total fat (0 g saturated fat), 24 g carbohydrate, 13 g protein
7 g dietary fiber, 360 mg sodium.