theZoomer Season 5, Ep. 18: Healthy Eating

theZoomer Season 5, Ep. 18: Healthy Eating


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eating organic produce, I think in many ways your
food becomes your medicine. So, you’re saying that you have
meat eating customers who love this? I’ve been doing the vegan chef
thing now for about 10 to 12 years, and I would say
about 90% of my customers aren’t vegetarian. After years and
years of cooking, whether it has been for
themselves or their family, it gives them not only the
convenience of having everything delivered
directly to their door, hopefully the opportunity to
find and discover ingredients. This is Fillipino steak adobo. From the Zoomerplex in
historic Liberty Village, the Zoomer with Libby Znaimer. Welcome to The Zoomer.
I’m Libby Znaimer. They say you are what you eat
and that’s especially true as we age. Not only does your
metabolism slow down, it also becomes more difficult
for your body to absorb certain nutrients. We’ve gathered
some food experts, including a couple of chefs,
a food writer, and a registered dietician to
break down how you can make every bite count as well
as making it delicious. We’ll be sampling everything
we cook right here at the roundtable. And as part of our feast,
Chef Shawn from Urban Fare, has whipped up this
very healthy salmon dish. So, bon appetite. But first, let’s
tee up the topic. Canada’s food guide, that iconic
colorful breakdown of what Canadians should be eating,
has formed the cornerstone of Canada’s approach to
healthy living for 75 years. And now, it’s set for a revamp
and rumored to upend the food rainbow Canadians have
relied on for decades. The new guide is expected to
emphasize a regular diet of veggies, fruits, wholegrains,
and protein rich foods, while deemphasizing
the necessity of animal meats and dairy. So, why the change? Over the past few decades, the
overall percentage of Canadians living by the food
guide has declined. One study revealed that only
44% of Zoomers embrace the recommendations. Where over two-thirds say
nutrition is important to them when planning meals. In fact, Zoomers, more
than any other generation, are the most focused
on healthy eating. The question is, will a revised
guide be the recipe we need for a fresh approach to nutrition? Well, we are here now with this
delicious seared salmon prepared by Chef Sean from Urban Fare. So, tell us more
about what you prepared. Wild salmon that was seared
and just baked slightly that it’s done but still moist. Underneath is a bed of
cauliflower, pureed cauliflower. A little bit of kale with some
garlic oil on it to give it little bit of
punch to the plate. And a lemon caper
sauce is on top of it. Grilled lemon, caper berries. And then on the side, we
have our healthy heart salad, which is made with
cabbage, and carrots, and broccoli, and a
wonderful sunflower seeds. Okay, well it sounds
pretty fancy. How easy or hard would it
be for someone to make some version of this? This meal would take somebody
between 20 minutes to 25 minutes to make from prep to finish. So, very easy, very accessible,
very fun to make. Like how?
What do you do? So, you chop up your
cauliflower first, and then you steam it, and then
you just put it into your food processor and whip it together
with a little bit of fresh thyme and lemon zest and olive oil. The salmon is seared in a pan. Pop it in the oven
at 350 degrees for eight to nine minutes. Pull it out. Put it on the bed of cauliflower
that you just cooked and then sear off a lemon and garnish it
with some fresh greens that we just got from an organic
farm just north of Toronto. Salmon is one of the
most searched items on the internet for people. Why is that? Because people who don’t
like fish will eat salmon because they think it’s
a little bit meaty. It has more of a texture to it. It isn’t so delicate.
Stands up to more things. I personally think there are
some wonderful fish out there that are actually
better for you than salmon. One of the issues, and
maybe Adam can talk to this, but one of the issues with the
farm salmon is the way that it is fed and you just do
not get the omega-3 oils, which is why you’re supposed to
eat salmon to make you healthy. So, you can be
eating a piece of steak. I mean, you know, you need to get salmon that
has been properly raised. And not just properly
raised, but preferably wild, but that’s very hard for us
to get except in the summer. Fresh.
-That’s true. The farm salmon doesn’t
tend to eat the algae that has the omegas in it. So, and there has also been some
question about the cleanliness of some of the
farms and what they, not only for the fish, but
what they do to the ecosystem. So, I do recommend that
if you can afford it, do buy the wild salmon. But it is quite expensive. So, you might want to
buy it less often or choose another fish. There is plenty out there. I think it’s important to
start with something healthy, learn more about that product,
and then if you, you know, if you find wild salmon and
you like it then go for it. But start with healthy product. And cut yourself an inch of
slack and eat something that’s healthy for you. And what about trout,
which is usually inexpensive. Is that cleaner?
-It’s great. Better? Yeah, it’s grown in the lakes,
which are generally… Or on trout farms, which
are generally very clean. Trout is clean. Some of the fish that is
coming from Australia right now, there is some salmon trout which
is actually similar to this, that’s coming from Australia
that is really fantastic. There is lots…
You know. Go and look on the
internet at the site, there are sites that
tell you what fish… Ocean Wise is a
Canadian site that… Monterey Bay… Monterey Bay is
the other one, right. And if they say on the label
that this is Ocean Wise, buy it. You know that’s okay. For the series that we produced,
Organic Panic, we went out to BC and
we looked up the whole salmon industry out there. And it’s actually pretty
shocking what goes on in the salmon farms. For example, the color of the
salmon is actually determined by an additive, and
they have a chart, we decide how pink
your salmon should be. And based on that, you feed it a
certain amount of this additive to achieve that color. And not only that, but some
say that the salmon farms are destroying wild salmon
stocks, because they… It’s this breeding ground
for disease and sea lice. Wild salmon stocks swim
through them and touch all the disease and die off. So, it’s actually a big issue
in British Columbia right now. I thought that the co-ho salmon
was a darker color because it had less fat and was a
little different than… In the wild, yeah. It would depend a
lot on their diet. But in a farm situation,
as you said, they’re not getting the
kind of nutrients they would in the wild. So, they’re fed these
additives that give them the color and stuff. I think it’s important, also,
we know that people don’t eat enough fish, and we don’t get
enough omega-3 fatty acids. And if you’re vegan, you can
get them from other sources. But if you think that
you want to eat more fish, by the fish that you can afford. So, we’re not saying
never buy farmed fish. I would have a starting point.
Whatever you can afford. Whatever you like the taste of. I’d rather you eat any
fish than no fish at all. Exactly. Okay, we’re going to
take a quick break and we’ll be right back. [Applause] ♪♪♪ I think that one of the issues
where people are cooking for one is that they don’t
always feel like shopping. So, if they have a
decent store cupboard, were they have a few
things that they like in it, then they can easily
make a meal like this, which is healthy. ♪♪♪ Welcome back. We’re talking about to
prepare meals for the family, but for many people, healthy
eating falls by the wayside when they’re eating alone. And even if you have shopped
with the best of intentions, we’ve all had fresh fruit and
vegetables turn into science experiments in the fridge
before you can use them up. I’m here with Lucy Waverman,
editor at Food and Drink magazine and columnist
for the Globe and Mail. And we’re going to cook
and talk at the same time. So, this is, if you have to cook
for one out of whatever is in the cupboard. Well, I think that one of the
issues when people are cooking for one, is that they don’t
always feel like shopping. So, if they have a
decent store cupboard, where they have a few
things that they like in it, then they can easily
make a meal like this, which is healthy. Now, I want to talk about tuna. Tuna has a bad rap deservedly. It has mercury in it,
and it’s overfished, and it’s being caught
in these giant nets. And it’s all bad stuff. This can says, and
I hope it’s true, that this was
fished responsibly. But if you want to be really
sure that you’re eating decent tuna, this
Italian brand of tuna, it’s… Can you see that
it’s not white tuna? Because white tuna… These light tunas or pink
tunas are much healthier. Okay, I thought, actually,
in some of the tunas, the darker they are,
the less good they are. In taste, sometimes. But these Italian
ones are just terrific. So, we’re going to
add that in here to… Everybody has cans of beans. I have so many cans of beans
that sometimes I wonder if I’m ever going to
use them all up. So, these are white beans. White kidney beans, also
known as cannellini beans, the Italian ones. Throw them in. So, we’re going to put
some red onion in here. And for people who don’t like
red onion, just skip it. Or you can put green
onion in, it’s okay. And at the same time, we’re going to put some
tarragon in here. Now, tarragon is a
herb that I really like. It has got licorice flavor.
I love it. It grows incredibly
well in your garden, if you’re got a garden to
grow it in, or even in pots. So, throw some of that in. And here is some more that
I’ve already chopped up. So, that’s going in as well.
And olives. And you just buy olives. Buy the ones that are pitted. You don’t want to… I don’t know. So, you just throw
your olives in too. So, this is building into a
really interesting… And they’re chopped too.
And they’re chopped. Everything is chopped.
Interesting salad. And then, with the red pepper,
this is really for color, and if you don’t
like peppers, or again, if they don’t like you,
just skip it for yourself. Use what you like. I do want to talk
about buying when you’re cooking for yourself. You’re far better off to buy one
or two lemons then to have to buy a whole package of them. Or, you know, two ounces
of green beans rather than four ounces. Which you’re not going to use. So, I think the fruit
and vegetable markets, even though you might pay a
little bit more at the butcher, you’re not going to have
things that are leftover. And are you going to dress this?
-I’ll dress it. Do you want to dress it?
-Yeah. Okay, so, what I have in here,
is mayonnaise and sour cream, or you can use yogurt. Low-fat sour cream but not
low-fat mayonnaise because there are so many additives
in low-fat mayonnaise. Really?
-Yeah, so many additives. In low-fat mayonnaise?
-In low-fat anything. You should never eat low-fat. You just eat less
of the high-fat. I can see that Miss Langer
is agreeing with me. I had no idea. We have low-fat mayonnaise, not
because we’re worried about fat. So, it’s just…
No, lemon juice. Now, when you’re
squeezing lemon, squeeze it through
your fingers so that… The pits.
-The pits don’t go in. So, there you go. Now, we’re going to
stir in olive oil. And use a decent olive oil. Use an extra-virgin if you can
because this is a nice salad and it really will be much enhanced
by having good olive oil. Okay, so now, throw it in. Now, what’s the issue… It’s a whole other
story with olive oil, extra-virgin olive oil
that isn’t really extra-virgin olive oil. Okay, so, if you’re really…
-It isn’t. A lot of it is not. The issue for people is that you
should look for a little sign that says DOP. And DOP means that it’s
grown and produced where it says it is. And to have DOP,
you’ve got to have, you’ve got to be able to
prove that it’s all correct. So, okay.
Take it over. Yup.
-For you. Thank you.
-With your lemon. Thank you.
-Dig right in. I think I will.
-This looks yummy. This is a lovely
lunch or dinner. Yeah, and it’s quick.
-I think it’s delicious. I love this.
It’s really nice. It’s really nice. If you want to actually cook,
this is put together with room temperature and
pantry ingredients. How do you suggest people
get organized for that? Well, you have to have a
decent store cupboard. You have to sit down. You can look at books,
look on the internet, and figure out what
you really need to have. Like, I always have tuna,
I always have beans, I always have olive oil. Mayonnaise in the fridge,
always. And usually yogurt
or sour cream. But there are so many other
things that you can have too. Lots of vinegar, spices.
Like but buy what you like. Like, don’t give into thinking
that I have to have sriracha because everybody
else likes sriracha. Don’t buy it if
you don’t like it, you know? Okay, stay right there,
we’ll be right back. [Applause] So, super simple.
Avocado. If you have these potatoes
backed in advance, you’re golden,
because you need protein. I recommend the
tuna or some beans. And there is your dinner. ♪♪♪ [Applause] Welcome back. By the time you get home,
you and your loved ones are already hungry, not
to mention tired. That’s why a lot of people
turn to prepared and processed options, but there are ways to
get that home cooked meal on the table quicker. Joining us is Abby Langer,
a registered dietician. And let’s start off with the
simple ingredients we should have in our fridges all of the
time to make sure we can get a fresh meal together. Yes, so, some of the things that
I always have in my pantry and my kitchen are cans of beans,
just like Lucy was saying. Beans, they last
forever in the can. Or dry. If you have the
time to soak them. And they’re super healthy. They’re a great source
of fiber and protein. Milk or plant
milk if you prefer, just because it’s an ingredient
in a lot of different dishes. I always, this is a funny one. I always have frozen
shrimp in my freezer. I used dried herb… Sorry, frozen shrimp in tacos.
I use them in salads. I actually fry them up with… Just sauté them
with onions and garlic. And it’s delicious. Okay, I’ve heard a lot of
bad things about shrimp. Right, I know.
Some of them tend… I try to avoid shrimp from Asia,
in general. I’ll buy the wild
Argentinian shrimp. I’ll be the United States… One from the United States,
just to be safe. But use what you can afford. Okay, why don’t you prepare…
What are you making? What are you
making for us tonight? Well, I actually
developed this recipe. It’s actually not even a recipe. It’s… I threw this together. I used to eat it
when I was single. And I would come home
and I would have a million things to do. And it’s just super easy.
We have sweet potatoes. Very healthy.
-Yes, very healthy. I think people should just
relax on the potato already, because potatoes
are super healthy. White ones or sweet,
whatever you prefer. And you can actually
bake these in advance. Do a couple of them a couple of
days before or the day of your, that you’re making them. How long? It’s only about
20 minutes, right? These ones are small.
So, yeah, probably 30 minutes. The big ones obviously
will take longer. And then, stuff with whatever
you have in the kitchen. My personal favorite, and
my husband thinks I’m crazy, but I use the
Italian-style tuna. Of course, in olive oil
because it tastes the best. And this lightly steamed kale,
but you can use raw spinach. You can use arugula.
You can use any green you want. And guacamole or avocado.
And sour cream. Do you have anything
in the avocado here? It’s just a guacamole. So, I usually put some cilantro,
some tomatoes, some jalapeno, but honestly, I will put cubes of plain
avocado on these if I had
nothing. So, these are usually… These are made with things
I usually have in my fridge. In my freezer or my pantry. Like black beans
for the protein. Like tuna for the protein. And here, you’re going to show
us how to put one together. Yeah, so, super simple.
Avocado, really quickly. If you have these potatoes
baked in advance, you’re golden because
you need protein. So, I recommend the tuna or
some beans, some tomatoes. Using my hands. My mom said, “A good chef
always uses her hands.” [Crosstalk] Should I make one too?
-Yeah, you need to make one. Make the one you want.
-And there is your dinner. And it’s super healthy. The potatoes, sweet
potato has antioxidants in it, it’s filling, and it’s
also really inexpensive. So, for those of you on a
budget, and who isn’t, right? It’s perfect.
It’s the perfect option. You can seriously make this in
less thought and time than it takes to order Uber Eat. Okay, we’re going to
continue making these, but up next, we are going to
take a look at the meal kit craze that has busy
families cooking up terrific, pre-packaged meals in
30 minutes or less. The ingredients arrive
at your doorstep, all prepped, and you just follow
the recipe card. ZNews videographer,
Darrin Maharaj, gives us a special sneak
peak of the test kitchen for Toronto based company,
Chef’s Plate. So, you can walk in the store,
pick up a meal kit. Just ordered Amazon meal kit. Well, meal kits have quickly
become one of the fastest growing segments in
the food marketplace, and now this Swedish invention
has grown into $120 million industry here in Canada. And here at the
Chef’s Plate test kitchen, they’re given us a behind the
scenes look at how they come up with these perfectly
proportioned meals in a box. This is where we create 16
unique recipes every week. And our team of recipe
developers is here right now, working on a few unique recipes. Kenan is working on a
spicy corn mafalda pasta. Corn, arugula, ricotta,
parmesan cheese. And if we just come up here,
Meredith is working on a really exciting Fillipino
adobe steak dish. It’s got bok choy, peppers, and
then a nice savory steak will sort of take the centerpiece. As you can see,
whether it’s timing, working on her execution, all of our recipes are
30 minutes or less. All the Chef Plate meal kits
come in this refrigerated box. They include step-by-step
instructions. Inside the box, all of the
kits that come every week, and then can see
there are ice packs. With the Zoomer demographic,
after years and years of cooking, whether it has been
for themselves or their family, it gives them not only the
convenience of having everything delivered
directly to their door, but also the opportunity to try
and discover new ingredients. This is Fillipino steak adobe. Do we get the Darrin stamp
of approval on this one? I think this one
is Darrin approved. This is the spicy
corn mafalda pasta. Shall we, ladies?
That’s really nice and creamy. I like it.
Surprisingly creamy. If you’re thinking of trying one
of these meals out in your own kitchen, keep in mind, most meal
kit companies make it easy by offering a special
discount for your first order. At the Chef’s Plate
test kitchen in Toronto, I’m Darrin Maharaj enjoying my
honey garlic turkey burger for Zoomer News. ♪♪♪ Well, Chef’s Plate is
providing everyone in our audience with a promo code
for 50% off their first order. In the meantime, we’ve got some
of these sweet potato poppers that Abby has just
made at the table. But I want to talk
about these meal kits. Are they really expensive? Well, I don’t think so,
when you… When you look at your time, if
you take your time and you say, “Okay, my time is worth
so much an hour.” Have to go to the supermarket,
that’s an hour. I have to buy the food,
that’s, add that in. And all the rest of it, I don’t think the meal kits
come out that expensive. I just tried the
Roll’s Royce one, and they were $55
for a family of four, but that’s complete,
including desert. It was huge.
-It’s huge. You know, I think if you
don’t have the meal kit and you’re liable to go out
and purchase a meal, or several meals, a week instead
of getting in the kitchen and cooking, then I think the
meal kits are worth it. Okay, we’re going to take a
quick break and we’ll be right back with more of The Zoomer. [Applause] I’m just going to transfer
over one of my veggie burgers here that’s been cooking,
get it right onto the bun, and then I don’t about you,
I love topping things. I love barbeque sauce. We make our own organic
maple syrup barbeque sauce. ♪♪♪ [Applause] Welcome back. Even if you aren’t
vegetarian or vegan, many studies suggest that
increasing the number of plant-based meals in your
diet will reduce your risk of cardio-vascular disease and
other chronic health issues, like Type II Diabetes. I’m sure everyone has heard
of at least meatless Mondays. Right now, we’re joined by vegan
chef and author of Eat Raw, Eat Well, Chef Douglas McNish. [Applause] This smells fantastic.
-Thank you so much for having
me. I really appreciate it. Yeah, it’s really
cool right now. I have a restaurant
called Mythology Diner. It’s here in Toronto.
It’s a high-end diner. And I would say, 90% of our customers
aren’t even vegetarian. You know, you have more and
more people coming who want to embrace this way of eating. And it’s phenomenal.
-So, what have you go here? So, today I’m going to demo a
really simple veggie burger. So, the base of this
burger is actually something called tempeh. Tempeh is Indonesian
in heritage. It’s basically whole soy beans
and they’re steamed and they’re pressed together into a block. And there is a
fermentation added. Because it’s a whole food, and
it’s not processed like tofu, it’s much easier to digest. And again, because
it’s a whole food, it’s very high in protein,
iron, and calcium. So, for the base of
the burgers here, we have some caramelized onion. So, all you’re going to want to
do is cut your onion nice and thin, what we refer to in
the chef world as julienne. Okay, and you’re going to
get that into your pot. And what’s important here is
to create a depth of flavor, of something called umami. In my opinion, it’s what
is missing in a lot of vegetarian cuisine. You know you have ribs or
chicken and they’re dripping with juices and barbeque sauce,
that’s umami. So, gone are the days of the
brown rice and the sprouts and the tahini sauce, and enter
the days where vegan cuisine is right there up on the
same as all of the other cuisines there are. Okay, so, that’s a nice
big portabella mushroom. Yeah, so this is some mushroom. So basically, what we want
to do here is sort of start to caramelize them. And that just means bring
out the natural sugars. You want to start adding
some other ingredients here. Okay, what goes first?
-We have wheat free tamari. We’re going to get
that into the pot, yeah. We’re going to
throw in some ketchup. We’re going to have
organic ketchup here. Get that right in there. We can throw in
some Dijon mustard. We’re going to get in here. And we’re just going to
cook that down a little bit. Okay, got it. We’re going to get something
called nutritional yeast. So, that’s this guy right here. So, nutritional
yeast is a yeast… You can throw that right in. It’s actually grown
on bean molasses. And it’s grown for the
purpose of making things cheesy and rich. And generally speaking, they
fortify it with B vitamins, so it’s really high in B-12. Okay, so, what’s next? We’re going to take our tempeh
that was steamed slightly, and we’re going to
cut it nice and small. So, we’re going to get
that right into our pot. Give that a stir.
-Okay? I have cooked millet. So, we’re going to
take that cooked millet, so get that right into the pot. And then some sunflower
seeds and we’re going to get that right into the pot. And those two things, they
start to absorb moisture. And what we’re going to do is,
we’re going to take that… And if you don’t mind, Libby, just passing me that
bowl right there. The large mixing bowl. And we’re going to get
that right up to the board. And if you don’t mind
popping it right into the bowl. All of this?
-All of this. Okay.
-Just get it right in. I’m putting you to work today. Actually, we need a new
sous chef at the restaurant. Okay, shouldn’t do
that with my left hand. All right. So, we have our mixture here. Run a lot through
the food processor. As you can see,
it’s kind of loose. It needs to absorb
some of the moisture. We need some
ingredients to get in there. So, I have two things over here.
So, these are grown flax seeds. So yeah, we’re going
to get those in there. And brown rice flour. We need brown rice flour
to keep this gluten free. You’ll start to see
right away by mixing, you can tell already, it’s starting to really
thicken and seize up, right? Okay, yeah, is this…
-That’s perfect. So, through the
magic of television, what we’ve done is we’ve
taken the same batter, pardon my reaching. And we just let it
sit a little bit. And this is…
-Really? It’s going to get
from that to there. It’s going to get
from this to this. It’s almost like
a burger batter. So, we’re just
going to take this… And we have a
pre-heated flat top. You can do this
on your barbeque. We’re just going to
pop it right on there. You hear that sizzle,
that’s that caramelization we’re looking for on the burger. We’re going to flatten these
a little bit with a spoon. Now, I see…
Are these… Is that the right
amount to cook those? They look pretty well done.
So, these look… These are pretty well done. So, what we have here
is a vegan brioche bun. So, we have our brioche. Normally we would toast
it at the restaurant. I have a vegan aioli.
-What’s that made with? So, this is actually cashew
based in the mayonnaise, and then there is some fresh
herbs and some lemon juice. I’m just going to transfer over
one of my veggie burgers here that has been cooking. Get it right onto the bun. And then, I don’t
know about you, I love topping things. I love barbeque sauce. We make our own organic maple
chipotle barbeque sauce in the restaurant. Caramelized onions so we
can get those right on top of the burger as well. And a little bit
of shaved pickles. And then we’ll just top it up. And at the restaurant, we
have all sorts of things. We have loaded backed potatoes. You guys can see over here,
just at the corner, we have one plated. So, that is a baked potato
loaded with almond milk, cheddar cheese, cashew sour
cream, some fresh… We used tempeh bacon
bits at the restaurant too. And just before we get onto the
next thing, explain that. That’s a vegan egg.
-So, this is a cobb salad. So, the white itself
is soft silken tofu. And that’s blended with
something called agar, which is a plant-based gelatin. And in the middle
is an egg yolk, and that’s made out
of mashed potatoes, a little bit of turmeric, and then we’ve also created
a vegan blue cheese. And that’s aged and fermented
just the way you would do a traditional dairy cheese. Okay, that’s quite something. Now, advocates say that a
vegan diet is a healthy choice for the environment as well. Take a listen to
ideaCity speaker, Nick Halla. As a biochemist, what’s the
biggest positive impact you can have on the world? And he realized, our reliance
on animals for food production, was by far the biggest threat
to the world’s environment. And as a biochemist, he had
the skills to work on this. So, that really
connected with me. It made me change everything
that I knew about food. And I joined Pat from day one
to help him build this company. And the problem with
animal agriculture today, as we just learned, is
that it just doesn’t scale. It worked a thousand years ago,
but we can’t feed the world this way, the seven billion,
going on 10 billion people. Today, animal agriculture uses
more than 50% of the world’s land surface, more than 25%
of the fresh water each year, and more greenhouse gasses than
all transportation combined. But we’ll come to
another question, why do you think we
eat all of this meat, and cheese, and fish? Marketing?
-It tastes good. It’s absolutely delicious food. And unless we solve that,
nothing else is going to change because people love to bite
into that big juicy burger. Okay, so, we have
our vegan burger here, people. Dig in and tell
us what you think. So, you’re saying that
you have meat eating customers who love this. I’ve been doing the vegan chef
thing now for about 10 or 12 years, and I would say 90% of
my customers aren’t vegetarian. It’s a messy burger.
-It’s awesome. Wow. Delicious. Yeah, it’s pretty awesome. I’ve personally been vegan
almost 14 years and I’ve really watched this whole world change. 14 years ago, I used to get,
what are you doing? I’m a vegan chef.
Like, ew. And now it’s, oh my God.
That’s so cool. My aunt is vegan.
My dad is vegan. My daughter is vegan. And a lot more people are
adopting this way of living. Like I said, even if you’re not
full-on vegan, or vegetarian, a lot of people are adding
more of this into their diet and their lifestyle. Okay, well, thanks so much. Now, a lot of people
believe that the best fruits and vegetables are organic, which
means grown without pesticides. But it can get very expensive. So, each year, an
American non-profit called, The Environmental Working Group,
lists the fruit and vegetables with the most pesticide residue
and those with the least. It’s a bid to help us make our
food dollars go further by only buying organics, where
the pesticide residue is the greatest. The foods with the most
residue, the dirty dozen include strawberries, spinach,
nectarines, apples, and grapes. The clean 15, those with the
least pesticide residue include avocados, sweet corn,
pineapple, cabbages, and onions. But not everyone agrees that
some conventionally grown food can be bad for us. Take a look at this clip from
the series, Organic Panic. If everything is killing us, why
do we live so much longer and healthier lives
than our ancestors? Centuries ago, food was,
by definition, organic. You didn’t have synthetic
fertilizers, or pesticides. You had a billion people, the vast majority of which
were malnourished. Today, there are
over 7 billion of us. We use more synthetic
inputs than ever before. But whereas life
expectancy was something like, you know, 32 years of age in
1800 maybe 47 years of age in 1900, today most people expect
to live close to 80 at least. And there are… It’s probably not that
realistic to expect the younger generation to live on
average 100 years old. Okay, so not only do we have to
sort out whether we should buy organic fruits and
vegetables and which one, but there is also, you know,
what’s the difference between free range, free run,
and organic meats? I mean, I’m confused. And natural is another one,
which is actually not certified and it doesn’t have a lot
of regulation around it. But you’ll see it a
lot in stores and stuff. The health benefits, you know,
the jury is sort of out. One benefit for sure of organic
though is that the people who grow it, the people who
work in fields and stuff, you know, by buying organic,
you’re encouraging a way of farming that doesn’t harm them. You know, doesn’t harm them in
farm countries without as many great regulations as possible. But in terms of what it
actually does for you, there is a study that kind
of says that because of the Environmental Working
Group’s dirty dozen list, low income families are
actually less likely to, or less inclined to buy any kind
of vegetable because they warned off so drastically against these
pesticides in these vegetables. And that’s the worst
thing that anybody can do. It’s not… Well, everybody, I think,
agrees that the danger of not eating fruits and vegetables is
much greater than eating some that might have a
bit of pesticide. Absolutely. And again, the pesticide, there
have been all kinds of studies that have said, you know, the
kind of consensus that does emerge is that they aren’t
really going to be that… There isn’t a great deal
of damage that’s being done by pesticides. But the people who are getting
the damage of the pesticides are again, the people who work at
farms and in that industry. I think organic is a really
important way to produce food, that’s a method that can
be used to produce food. Do you agree with him? I’m going to disagree with you,
Chris. So, I think, as
an organic farmer, our first job, our
second job is to grow food. Our first job is to
steward the soil. So, I think there is a very
intricate relationship between plants and the soil that
in a conventional model, you’re spraying pesticides. So, whether or not these
pesticides have a negative impact on our health, they’re
killing the soil biology. They’re killing everything
above the soil and everything below the soil. It’s the biology in the soil,
these microorganisms that interact with the
roots in the plant, that make
nutrients bio-available. So, while a conventional
apple may have nitrogen, potassium, phosphorus, an
organic apple will have much more than that. Lots of vitamins and minerals
needed for day to day life. So, when you’re
eating organic produce, I think in many ways, your
food becomes your medicine. And you’re not need to rely on
the pharmacy or other ways a multivitamin, for instance, to
get these essential vitamins. There have been a
number of outbreaks involving organic food. What’s your reaction to that?
Can you… Like salmonella, and
contaminated organic… Yeah, yeah, I think it’s very
important for people to have a relationship with their grower. We’re very privileged in this
region to be able to go out and meet our farmers, and I think
that’s important. You can’t, I think, it’s hard
to rely on the organic label, because there are irresponsible
growers out there. But I think if you go out
and you visit your farm, and you can see how is
the food being processed… Yes, realistically, it’s hard
enough for people to actually find the time to go and shop. So, you know, going
to meet your grower, that might be a nice outing a
couple times a season, but realistically, people are
going to buy this somewhere. There is many, many dozens,
I would say, of farmer’s markets
throughout the GTA. So, you don’t necessarily
have to go to the farm… Ah, and last year,
there were stories that, at some farmer’s markets,
they were vendors who went to the supermarket,
picked the stuff up, and resold it at higher prices. For sure. It’s all about
talking with farmers. It’s talking to
people who produce food. And I think
that’s something that, as a chef, it has been
very important for me, but in a lot of cases, we
don’t have the opportunity to. And we really do need to talk to
the people who produce our food. We do. When you go to the
farmer’s market, ask the vendor,
“Did you grow this fruit? Did you grow this vegetable?”
Ask questions. Do you spray?
When you’re… They tell you, they tell you.
They tell you. And if you’re buying a nectarine
in November, it’s a bit of… It’s not from Ontario.
It’s a clue. Okay, when we return, we’ll take some questions
from the audience. [Applause] How good are avocado?
-Extremely. They’re very good for you.
They’re high in fat. Extremely.
-But it’s good fat. They’re no carbs.
There is no sugar. Yes, they’re very good for you. ♪♪♪ [Applause] Welcome back. We’ll hear from our audience
now, staring with… Hi, what’s your name?
-My name is Brondell. And I have a question
on behalf of my grandson. He loves avocados. He always wants me to
have avocados in the house. I want to know, how
good are avocados? How good they are for you? Yeah, how good are they for you?
-Extremely. Very good for you.
They’re high in fat. Extremely.
-But it’s good fat. They’re no carbs.
There is no sugar. So, yes, they’re
very good for you. The issue is
finding good avocados. And the ones that have
a nubby skin to them, the hoss avocados, are
probably the better ones that we can buy here as opposed to
the smooth skinned ones. And secondly, ripening them. You’re going to find
them hard most every place. There is different
ways of ripening them, but don’t refrigerate them. Put them on top of the counter
or put them into a brown paper bag, that will
ripen them quicker. What I do in the
restaurants is… Because we have a lot to
deal with, you know, we buy 40 at a time. Right before they’re
about to be perfect, throw them in the fridge,
and you’ll actually… They’ll ripen a little bit
more slowly and you’ll extend that shelf life up to a week. And/or once they’re ripened,
throw them into the freezer. They’re great.
You can use frozen avocado. Really?
-Absolutely. Thank you so much.
-Okay, thanks very much. And stay right there, we’ll be right back
with some final thoughts. [Applause] ♪♪♪ On Twitter, Joanne says,
if we spent more time farming vegetables instead of
putting up slaughter houses, world hunger
would cease to exist. Hashtag, proud vegetarian. On Facebook, Caroline writes,
I’ve started eating breakfast again after 10 years without it. And to be honest, I’ve never
felt better in the morning. On Twitter, Sean Tweets, I’ve
lost over 13 pounds in the past month simply by
changing my diet. It’s incredible what
the human body can do. Hashtag, weight loss. Keep the comments coming in. And don’t forget to logon to www
dot the Zoomer TV dot com for full episodes and more. ♪♪♪ [Applause] Welcome back. Our panelists will leave
you with some final thoughts, starting to my left. I just want to say thank
you for having me today here. It was great
discussing this with you all. I’m a big advocate for a
vegan diet and lifestyle, so I’ll just leave you
with come to Mythology Diner. We’re here in Toronto and
support organic local farmers, and no where your
product is coming from. And thanks again. Yeah, thank you so
much for having us out. I want to just,
you know, be happy, be healthy, buy
local when you can. And buy healthy food
if you can’t buy local. I think that organic is a
great method of farming and a great way to be. And I think it’s great for the
producers and the people who work the land and
for the land itself. But for your own
personal health, don’t sweat it so much, as long
as you’re eating a healthy kind of balanced diet. I think that’s the
most important thing. Yeah, just eat healthy.
Get out there. Taste different things. Don’t be afraid to
taste different things. Don’t sweat what
things that you have to do. Try things and then
worry about the politics and everything else after. My final words would be,
never eat processed foods. Just never. Because the processed
foods are full of sugar. They’re full of all sorts of
additives that you don’t even know about. If when you read the label,
there is a word you don’t understand, don’t buy it. Okay, well, thank
you for being with us. I hope that we have inspired
you to take a fresh approach to cooking and eating. For the recipes for the
food that we had here, go to the Zoomer TV dot com. We’ll see you soon.
It’s time to zoom out. [Applause] ♪♪♪ ♪♪♪ ♪♪♪ ♪♪♪