Red Meat & Cholesterol
This episode introduces good health and nutrition to the meals we eat, and sets the theme for the entire first series with one of the most common dietary dilemmas in America, the issue of red meat and cholesterol. The savory and taste-temping recipes, including bitter/sweet steak salad and roast lamb with chimichurri and ratatouille, puts into proportion how much is too much red meat and whether dietary cholesterol is actually the health threat we were convinced it was decades ago. In this episode, David travels to his seaside getaway in Scotland for a beachside lamb barbecue - Hebridean-style - before heading back to his studio kitchen near Palm Springs to roast the lamb home-style. The episode wraps up with the "Second Helpings" segment, featuring resident dietician Elizabeth Kelsey discussing healthy portions for red meat meals, the truth about dietary cholesterol and the greater concern we should have concerning overall saturated fat in our foods. Next is an upbeat "Earn What You Eat" golf segment to leave viewers with the important message that physical activity is just as important to a healthy lifestyle as fresh, nutritious and flavorful food.
The Salt Show: Sodium Vs. Hypertension
The episode begins with a hot location intro... literally! The July temperature was 117 as host David Jackson stands atop 60 million tons of reflectively white sodium chloride at Bristol Dry Lake in the Mojave Desert. Emphasizing the importance of reducing salt in our cooking and eliminating 'hidden' sodium from our diets overall, "The Salt Show" consists of two exemplary, in-kitchen recipes, no salt chicken chili verde and low sodium orange sesame chicken. David also visits Uig Lodge & Smokehouse in the Outer Hebrides in Scotland to learn all about the pros and cons of salt-cured smoked salmon. Dr. Philip Shaver, founder of Desert Cardiology at Eisenhower Medical Center is interviewed on why a low sodium diet helps combat hypertension and improves heart health, while resident dietician Elizabeth Kelse illustrates where, how and why - from a food perspective - we should shed sodium from our meals. Finally, David swaps his chef's knife for hiking boots during the "Earn What You Eat" segment in order to trek the arid Kelso Sand Dunes in the Mojave Desert and illustrate the importance of maintaining an active lifestyle as we age.
Omega 3's: Are They A Fish Story?
Healthy Omega-3 fatty acids are found in a variety of fresh foods, but according to resident dietician and "Second Helpings" co-host, Elizabeth Kelsey, seafood, particularly finned fish like salmon and mackerel, is the most efficient source for our bodies. Episode three begins beside Uig Bain the Outer Hebrides, and leads the viewers through three great seafood recipes high in Omega-3's. They include mussels marinara, smoked mackerel pate, and foil roasted salmon with lemon and dill. Out-of-kitchen adventures also season this seaside episode, with host David Jackson collecting the mussels, catching the mackerel and educating viewers about wild vs. farmed salmon prior to preparing the trio of Omega 3-rich delicacies. David takes a dive in Uig Bay for an undersea "Earn What You Eat" segment, re-emphasizing the importance of both healthy food and appealing exercise as the years go by.
Sweet Things: Is Sugar Public Enemy #1?
This episode shows viewers exactly how to satisfy a sweet tooth with creative deserts containing a healthy package of nutritionally sweet benefits, as opposed to refined white sugar which contains nothing but empty calories. "Sweet Things" opens in the arid date gardens of southern California's Coachella Valley, where David introduces three delectable desert desserts - a Mediterranean sweet/savory dessert tray, boozy oranges with a hint of chocolate and date and bourbon Chantilly cream over fresh fruit. David whips up all these yummy temptations from his kitchen studio near Palm Springs. David takes an out-of-kitchen adventure to Oasis Date Gardens. There he experiences the annual harvest of this ancient, semi-dry fruit. It's agriculture like you've never seen, and possibly never tasted before. Also, dietician Elizabeth Kelsey educates viewers to the surprising nutritional benefits of dates, and other fruits, while cautioning about using too much refined sugar in her "Second Helpings" segment. Then David goes for a jog to wrap up the show with another "Earn What You Eat" message about the importance of positive activity and fitness, no matter your age.
Dietary Fiber: Bulking Up On Taste
David Jackson reflects on the passage of time, watching himself on a mid-century television set as much younger David promotes the importance of fiber. This is from his first cooking show 35 years ago. The message is similar. Only the messenger has changed, which in point of fact makes a high fiber message all the more vital. The tasty menu includes David's delicious almost chicken soup, so loaded with hearty, healthy and fresh vegetables and beans that there's almost no room left for lean, skinless chunks of chicken breast. Then there's his adaption of a Middle Eastern classic, tabbouleh with artichoke. By adding this fibrous and flavorful vegetable, the equation is improved: fiber + fiber = delicious! Hungry viewers are also in store for an informative segment on "The Sources of Dietary Fiber," followed by Elizabeth's "Second Helpings" segment, which further informs viewers as to why more fiber in food is vital as we age. Wrapping up the episode, David goes back to his hideaway in the Outer Hebrides to work up a good sweat cutting peat for his "Earn What You Eat Segment." Hebridean peat, which is fuel rather than fodder, is 4,000 years of accumulated grass and heather compressed into Scottish firewood.
The Power of Protein
The series is not just an average 'How To' cooking program. Instead, it's more a 'Why To' series emphasizing the importance of a nutritious and health-sustaining diet as we age. This episode advances this philosophy, while balancing good nutrition with abundant flavor, thanks to three disparate but delectable recipes. First, host David Jackson creates a trio of "devilish" eggs in the kitchen. Instead of traditionally deviled yolks, David stuffs the high protein egg whites with enticing and surprising low fat fillings like zesty guacamole and curried squash. Ounce for ounce, lobster has as much protein as beefsteak, but a fraction of the saturated fat. So, David travels to his seaside hideaway in Scotland to catch and cook a luscious 'lobbie' right on the beach. Then it's back to his desert kitchen for Spanish arroz and frijoles pintos picantes. In other words, good old rice and beans, which together provide a super low fat protein, source, but masses of flavor thanks to garlic, chili and a decadent culinary twist. The episode finishes with the dietary pros and cons of protein in the "Second Helpings" segment. Then another visit to Scotland has David showing that hauling a heavy lobster creel from the depths, with a slippery line, is a very taxing way to "Earn What You Eat!"
Eating The Rainbow
Chef/host David Jackson creates an impressive poulet jardin, which translates to chicken in the garden. It's eight tasty and well-presented recipes in one, most of them plant-based and colorful, and artfully arranged on a huge silver platter. David begins the show on location, shopping for a rainbow of vegetables at the Joshua Tree Certified Farmer's Market near his desert home. Then it's into the kitchen to prepare herb-roasted whole chicken, grilled zucchini and asparagus (green), roast cauliflower (winter white), sauteed red cabbage (blue/purple), roast butternut squash (orange/yellow), crumb crusted tomatoes (red) and glazed carrots (orange). Then he joins resident dietician Elizabeth Kelsey for a colorful "Second Helpings" segment to discuss why naturally occurring blue/purple foods help prevent heart disease, why green/yellow veggies combat macular degeneration, why the Lycopene in red foods, like ripe tomatoes, is such a powerful anti-oxidant and why orange fruits and vegetables help moderate blood sugar and improve immune function. And once the apron is off, David wraps up the episode with another outdoor "Earn What You Eat" message. This time it's some careful, age-appropriate rock climbing at Joshua Tree National Park, reminding viewers that we're never too old to explore and have fun while we keep fit and nimble... ish.
Dietary Fat: The Good, The Bad & The Necessary
Series host David Jackson prepares two exemplary recipes in the studio kitchen. First, a low fat open-face burger and then grilled ahi tuna steak with herbaceous olive oil sauce, both illustrating how easy it is to cut saturated fats, emphasize healthier mono-unsaturated fats and not lose a speck of flavor in the process. David visits Thom Curry, owner of Temecula Olive Oil Company. Thom is on the board of the California Olive Oil Council and a member of the C.O.O.C. Certification Tasting Panel. He explains the health benefits, flavor profiles, culinary attributes and even marketing stratagems of olive oil, while showing David how top quality olives are picked and pressed into green/gold elixir. David and Elizabeth also get together for another "Second Helpings" segment of nutritionally vital Q&A about dietary fats, after which he closes the episode on his bike with another "Earn What You Eat" fitness message.
Unloading Carbs: Reducing Dietary Starch
Potatoes, pasta and rice are just a few examples of our daily intake of carbohydrates, and each is on the menu in this episode. But as we age, we should unload some of these excess starches and sugars in favor of better choices and more modest portions. That's why David and Elizabeth have chosen three excellent recipes to illustrate how unloading carbs doesn't mean eliminating them altogether. From the studio kitchen in Palm Springs, David prepares classic parsley potatoes with the skin-on, for added nutrition, and sauteed in healthful and flavorful olive oil. Then it's off to Scotland for an out-of-kitchen adventure to collect fresh cockles on Uig Sands before adding them to an extraordinary whole wheat fusilli vongole. The cockles boost the lean protein intake while the whole grain pasta equals complex carbs, which are better for us. And finally it's back to the studio kitchen for vegetable and brown rice pilaf, with added onion, carrot, zucchini, dates and walnuts, further reducing empty carbohydrates and enhancing flavor. Most importantly, registered dietician Elizabeth Kelsey educates viewers about the importance of unrefined carbohydrates in what we eat during her "Second Helpings" segment. Healthy, whole-food carbs are excellent brain food and important for gut health. She also emphasizes portion. Healthy meals should consist of a single carbohydrate, not two or three, and the portion should not exceed a quarter of our plate. Finally, David recaps the show with another inspiring "Earn What You Eat" segment, this time from a rowboat on Loch Morsgail, rather than a rowing machine in a sweaty gym.
Aging & The Loss of Taste
There are no spectacles or hearing aids for our taste buds, but there are two important things we can do to maintain the enjoyment of our meals. One is to pack more flavors into our food without grabbing the saltshaker. The other is maintaining excellent oral health. Host David Jackson has chosen two spectacular recipes that exemplify the first. Fortified Marsala wine is a highly distinctive flavor and he uses it in his pork tenderloin Marsala, rife with garlic, shallots and mushrooms, accompanied by whole wheat spaghetti with spinach, to prepare a memorable meal. Then there are mango chicken brochettes. The sweet perfume of this fresh tropical fruit, along with chili and ginger, really perks up taste buds and the big chunks of skinless chicken breast, onions and bell pepper that sizzle on their skewers. The other aid in combating loss of taste is healthy teeth and gums. That's why David visits with Palm Desert maxillofacial prosthodontist Dr. Christian Luzar, who explains the anatomy of our mouths, plus how and why saliva, and a healthy chew, have a lot to do with our continued flavor recognition. Also, dietician Elizabeth Kelsey backs up Christian's good information with more of her own during her "Second Helpings" segment. As to David's ending "Earn What You Eat" spot, what could be a more old school active lifestyle choice than bowling? It's low impact, good for leg strength, grip strength, hand/eye coordination and flexibility.
The Weighty Issue of Calorie Counting
Chef/host David Jackson and resident dietician Elizabeth Kelsey show viewers that healthy calories from whole foods are nothing to stress over and not worth tabulating. But empty calories, from highly refined, over-processed foods, are what we need to scrutinize. David's trio of good calorie - not just low calorie - recipes reflect this fresh and tasty approach with Italian insalata di cavolo, plus stick-to-your-ribs southern-style beans and greens, both whipped up in the studio kitchen. Then it's off to Scotland for another outdoor culinary adventure. David prepares a lip-smacking Pollock ceviche at low tide, on the seabed of the very bay where he caught the Pollock hours before. Then in another enlightening "Second Helpings" segment, Elizabeth sets us straight about what comprises a sensible diet, how many and what kind of calories we should be eating, and why so many sensational weight loss schemes are just that... schemes. And in his "Earn What You Eat" segment to close the show, David burns off calories in the pool to illustrate that swimming is one of the finest exercises we can indulge in as we age.
The Spices of Life
Herbs and spices offer a bounty of concentrated anti-oxidants and anti-inflammatory agents that are greater than almost any other category of foodstuffs. But best of all, spices offer a superior variety of intense flavor alternatives that shame salt and sugar by comparison. Host David Jackson opens the show in the kitchen amidst a bazaar of exotic spices. Donning his apron, it's straight into a pair of outright delicious Indian-influenced recipes, fresh and easy lamb curry and vegetarian saag aloo. Plus, his own rendition of a family recipe from Scandinavia-spiced fruit compote - that would be right at home in the Madras. The "Second Helpings" segment offers nutrition advice from resident dietician Elizabeth Kelsey. For instance, did you know that cinnamon helps lower cholesterol and blood sugar, allspice regulates blood pressure, the capsaicin in red chili peppers reduces appetite and has anti-cancer properties, and turmeric is a veritable cure-all? To close the show, David rambles the headlands and beaches near his cottage in the Outer Hebrides to remind viewers that a long walk after a good meal is one of the least strenuous yet most enjoyable ways to "Earn What You Eat," no matter where you stroll.
Eating Away at Inflammation
Every recipe in each of the series' episode helps fight inflammation. The saturated fats, sodium and sugar shows teach food behavior to combat heart disease, hypertension and diabetes. However, the episodes about healthier fats, fiber, spices, protein and the vegetable rainbow teach that health-positive meals are also taste positive. But they all help prevent inflammation, no matter what their additional attributes may be. From the kitchen, David has a few culinary surprises up his sleeve, including a seafood mixed grill that offers a taste-tempting, heart healthy alternative to an old English chophouse favorite. After all, which do you prefer, sizzling salmon, scallops and prawns dressed with lemon, olive oil and anti-inflammatory Omega-3's, or fatty steak, sausage, kidneys and bacon with a side of clogged arteries and swollen joints? David also visits Dr. Kari Hortos, Sr. Assoc. Dean at MSUCOM, to learn more about inflammation from a medical perspective and share this good information with viewers. Then he joins Elizabeth Kelsey, R.D. for another "Second Helpings" segment to examine the subject of inflammation from the perspective of nutrition. In another energizing "Earn What You Eat" segment, highly active, relatively low impact competitive sports, like tennis, are excellent for maintaining aerobic fitness and foot-hand-eye coordination well into our 50's, 60's, 70's and beyond.
"Quality Calories: Eat Better & Count Less!" That's the title of this episode and it means exactly what it says. By consuming fresher, more wholesome foods, cooked without greasy coatings or rich sauces we can appease our appetites and enjoy our meals without adding a calculator to the table setting! David creates a garden-rich, wickedly tasty Spanish Tortilla that balances egg and cheese protein with the healthy bulk of new potatoes, chick peas and green beans, plus the subtle but provocative flavors of anchovy and sun-dried tomato. Yum! Then he artfully assembles a Chicken & Whole Grain Salad full of crisp, fresh vegetables, plus pearled barley and bulgar wheat, simply dressed with superbly healthy lemon and olive oil. Ignoring the deep fat fryer, David prepares a platter of Batter-Less Fish & Air-Fried Chips. It may not have quite the crunch of traditional fish & chips, but this delicious recipe makes up for crispiness by shrugging off excess fats and refined carbs while maintaining fantastic flavor!
Whether or not we flirt with hypertension, a diet that Reduces, Replaces and Removes excess sodium, especially hidden sodium from preservatives, is important at any age. So, instead of adding too much salt to our meals, in this episode of Food Over 50 we are "Subtracting Sodium." Chef/host David Jackson builds a variety of sushi rolls, or NoriMaki, that are far easier to make than we might think. Not only is there less rice to reduce the carb load, but David uses fresh lemon to replace half the salty soy sauce, including an extra special sodium reducing trick! Then our host prepares Quick-Kraut & Pork Casserole, replacing traditional salty sauerkraut with sauteed cabbage, caraway and vinegar to compliment the pork, onions and applesauce in this delicious and nutritious Alsatian classic. One the best ways to completely remove extraneous sodium from any recipe is to use chili and citrus. That's why David finishes up with zesty Beef Fajitas Tacos, grilled with red chili and dressed with the bite of refreshing lime!
Do you recall the decades-old suppertime entreaty by our parents to "eat your roughage?" These days we call it fiber, but the sentiment is the same. That's why in this episode we're truly "Roughing It!" We'll be introduced to a Salmagundi, enlightened by an Antipasto and downright impressed by Tomates Farcies Au Pois! Food Over 50's chef/host David Jackson prepares three delectable recipes, each remarkably high in fiber but resembling broom straw and tree bark not at all! First, David creates a scrumptious Salmagundi of Fresh Berries & Quinoa, accented with the crisp bite of red onion, fresh lemon and ribbons of fresh basil. And in a delicious twist to a traditional Italian first course, how about a Grilled Vegetable Antipasto with lightly charred zucchini, yellow squash, fennel, radicchio and artichoke hearts? Then, Oven-Roasted Tomatoes Stuffed w/ Sweet Garden Peas are a sophisticated accompaniment to steak, chicken or fish. Each recipe is wonderfully high in fiber and the only rough part is trying to resist them!
Stretching The Facts About Gluten
Gluten vs. Gluten Free? Are we confused by the whole Gluten issue? Exactly what it is? What it does? Who it impacts? What are the symptoms of Gluten sensitivity? Well, in this episode we examine the facts about this stretchy little protein found in wheat, rye and barley. We dispel some of its myths and verify its truths by talking to a noted gastroenterologist and the past chair of the California Wheat Commission & U.S. Wheat Associates to examine both sides of the Gluten story. And equally important, chef/host David Jackson whips up Pasta and Pancakes! The brown rice & quinoa fusilli, dressed in a fabulous walnut and basil pesto, is 100% Gluten Free in deference to the small but outspoken percentage of the population with Gluten sensitivity. It may have a slightly different "chew" than durum semolina pasta, but it's just as tasty! On the other hand, David's extraordinarily delicious, sweet and savory whole wheat crepes contain naturally occurring Gluten, which is perfectly wholesome for the 97.5% of us who can gobble Gluten with abandon!
The Seafood Diet
What better place to introduce our "Seafood Diet" episode than by the sea. We certainly do not need to live close to salt water to enjoy fresh fish and shell fish these days. But one thing is certain: as we age, the lean, healthy, tasty, aquatic protein and Omega-3 sources from seafood are very welcome to command a greater portion of our diets. This in turn can lessen our consumption of fatty red meats! David prepares a mixed bag of seafood specialties, starting with a fabulous first course, Crab In A Cradle. Sweetly decadent crab meat is nestled in a ripe avocado half, then dressed with a light and lovely lemon dressing. For the fish course our host revs up one of his many bamboo steamers, slitting and seasoning a whole red snapper with Thai-style aromatics before steaming it to perfection in lemongrass-scented vapor. And for the main course, it's a hearty and appetizing Maritime Stew loaded with delicious and nutritious varieties of fish and shell fish swimming in a lean but luscious broth!
Garden Variety Cooking
Farm-to-table cooking is mighty popular these days, but unless we have our own backyard garden, farm-to-table is often easier said than done. That's why chef/host David Jackson stands in front of a corn field to introduce us to "Garden Variety Cooking." In this episode David emphasizes the plant-based, but not necessarily plant-exclusive theme of many of his recipes. With freshly-shucked ears straight from the field, our host prepares a delectable Sweet Corn Hash enhanced with red onion, red and green bell pepper, and a splash of cider vinegar for a stunningly tasty and satisfying vegetable side dish. He'll also prepare a medley of garden-fresh veggies in two other distinctively low fat, low sodium recipes. First, a lettuce-free Raw Vegetable Salad. Then a savory Spanish vegetable stew, or Pisto, that oozes with healthy olive oil and scents the kitchen with garlic and fresh herbs. Our doctors may be telling us to cut down on the steaks and burgers and barbecue, but there'll be fewer reprimands when we do more "Garden Variety Cooking!"
Sweet Things 2
There's no denying we all have a sweet tooth, but as we age and our A1c levels often tend to climb, lowering our refined sugar consumption makes a lot of sense. But what about our sweet tooth? Who wants to give up dessert? The first season of Food Over 50 brought us several delicious dessert options with zero refined sugar in David's initial "Sweet Things" episode. Season 2 is back with a second helping of healthier and more nutritious desserts in the episode "Sweet Things 2." Did you know that pears are high in fiber? So what could be better than fresh whole pears perfectly poached in hearty red wine and exotic spices to bring out their natural sweetness? David also places a ripe medley of peaches, nectarines and plums on the grill grates to concentrate and caramelize their natural fruit sugars. He plates the Grilled Stone Fruit with a modest but decadent smear of Greek yogurt and the tiniest drizzle of honey! And for a light and lovely pudding with just a hint of tropical sweetness, how about Mango Whip
In this episode we're "Minimizing Meat: Recipes for the Cautious Carnivore!" It's no secret that when it comes to eating red meats and poultry - at our age - the selection, preparation and portioning are very important. Smaller, leaner cuts are best. Plus, more healthful cooking methods keep the steaks, chops and cutlets from wallowing in their own fat, or swimming in extraneous sauces. A well-balanced meal that includes meat is a simple equation - one quarter from the butcher shop, one quarter from the granary or potato bin, and fully half our plate from the garden! Chef/host David Jackson puts beef on the grill, pork in the pan and a chicken in the pot, while keeping saturated fat to a minimum and great taste turned up to the max! David accentuates the importance of keeping meat dishes modest, accompanying them with sensible portions of healthy carbs and oodles of veggies, and saying "No Thanks" to rich sauces and heavy gravies!
Fresh is best when it comes to the meals we cook and eat, but what about bottled condiments that often go in, or on our meals? From ketchup to hoisin, there's not much that's fresh, fibrous or low in sodium or sugar about these manufactured sauces, marinades, dressings and relishes. That's why in our final episode, David whips up several "Clever Condiments" that put good nutrition and great taste ahead of convenience and shelf life! For instance, David shares with us the remarkably simple recipe for one of his favorite flavoring elixirs, Pilipili Ho Ho. It's one of the little known secrets of African cuisine! He also replaces salt & sugar-bearing tomato ketchup with fresh and delicious Pico de Gallo. Plus, whoever said cranberry sauce was only for Thanksgiving doesn't know David's 4-Season Cranberry Sauce, featuring far less sugar, fresh orange, ginger and chili. It compliments chicken, pork, beef and loads of garden vegetables just as well as turkey! Then David creates a classic, but remarkably quick & easy Curry House Medley of Cucumber Raita, Fresh Mango Chutney and Onion & Tomato Salad. That's followed by the sweetest, earthiest, no-sugar-added condiment you can imagine, Onion & Garlic Jam! Our "Clever Condiments" episode is all about freshly-made sauces and dressings that are absolutely worth relishing!