The Healthiest Meal Ever?
After mulling through 4,000 health claims, scientists construct the ultimate dish.
Tuesday, October 16, 2012 | Q Editors
From seasonal berries to oysters on the half shell, the list of superfoods is getting a bit extensive — contributing to even the most educated eater’s confusion over what to put in his or her mouth. So, scientists at Leatherhead Food Research in Surrey, England decided to mine the most beneficial ingredients and create one foolproof supermeal. After examining 4,000 body benefit claims, researchers determined the most crucial 220, and then packed them into what they’re calling “the healthiest meal ever.” After some culinary prowess, the ultimate dinner was served.
On the menu:
1. Smoked-Salmon Terrine: Contains omega-3 and DHA, which is a boon for the arteries, heart, and brain.
2. Mixed-Leaf Salad Dressed in Extra-Virgin Olive Oil: Helps maintain normal blood-cholesterol levels.
3. Chicken Casserole With Lentils and Mixed Vegetables: Protein-packed chicken contributes to muscle-mass growth, while veggies and lentils, which contain pantothenic acid, can help reduce tiredness and improve mental performance.
4. Multigrain Roll: The added fiber helps regulate your system, and folate aids in cellular repair.
5. Live-Yogurt-Based Blancmange Topped With Sugar-Free Caramel Sauce and Walnuts: The yogurt aids digestion, tooth health, and blood-glucose control; the nuts can contribute to the improvement of elasticity of blood vessels.
6. Specialty Sports Drink: Ingredients include micronutrients like biotin, which may speed metabolism, and calcium, which is good for muscle function. But is there one meal that best serves every body's individual needs? Probably not. "I don't think the healthiest meal exists, because there are so many differences in how each of us processes food," says Jesse Schwartzman, R.D., a Tier 4 coach at Equinox in New York City. "For example, this meal includes wheat, which obviously wouldn't work for someone who is gluten-intolerant." Digestive issues aside, Schwartzman still doesn't think there is anything inherently magical about the meal. "Although the food is healthy alone—except for maybe the smoked salmon, which is high in sodium—there is really no benefit to the specific combination here." And so our quest for the supermeal continues . . .
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Photography by Travis Rathbone/TrunkArchive.com