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Lifting lutein and zooming in on zeaxanthin with leafy greens is what’s in store this month in the GI News Kitchen because a new review in Nutrients concludes: “Current evidence suggests that higher dietary intakes of lutein and zeaxanthin are likely to play an important role in protecting against age-related macular degeneration (AMD)”.


Food as Medicine

Sue Radd APD believes that to live well you need to eat well. She is one of Australia’s leading nutritionists and health communicators and recognised by her peers as an expert on plant foods and phytonutrients. Her Food as Medicine won Best Health and Nutrition Cookbook in the World for 2016 by Gourmand World Cookbook Awards. She has selected two recipes packed with leafy greens from her new book to share with GI News readers.


This curry goes well with a steamed brown rice/red rice wholegrain combo. One 400g (14oz) can of chickpeas supplies around 1½ cups when drained and rinsed well. Prep: 10 mins • Cook: 30 mins • Serves 4

2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1 medium onion, finely chopped
2 cloves garlic, crushed
1 tsp chilli powder
1 tsp ground coriander
2 tsp ground cumin
2 cups plain tomato pasta sauce
1½ cups cooked chickpeas
320g (11oz) peeled pumpkin, diced
pinch salt, optional
120g (4oz) baby spinach leaves
2 tsp freshly chopped coriander (cilantro)

Heat oil in a large saucepan and sauté onion for about 5 minutes until soft. Stir in garlic and cook for 30 seconds. • Mix in chilli powder, coriander, cumin, tomato pasta sauce
and ½ cup of water. Stir well. • Add chickpeas and diced pumpkin, and bring to boil. Adjust
flavour with extra salt, if desired. • Reduce heat and simmer for around 15 minutes or until
pumpkin is tender. • Stir through baby spinach leaves until they start to wilt, followed by coriander, and serve immediately.

Per serve

1203kJ/ 287 calories; 9g protein; 13g fat (includes 2g saturated fat; saturated : unsaturated fat ratio 0.18); 29g available carbs (includes 15g sugars and 14g starch); 10g fibre; 639mg sodium; 1055mg potassium; sodium : potassium ratio 0.6.


Serve with wholemeal Lebanese bread, if desired. Prep: 20 minutes • Cook: 45 minutes • Serves 8


2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1 large onion, chopped
500g (17oz) brown lentils, picked over for stones and washed
1 teaspoon salt
2 medium potatoes, peeled and cut into 1cm (½in) cubes
2 medium zucchinis (courgettes), cut into 1cm (½in) cubes
1 bunch silverbeet (chard), trimmed, washed and shredded into 1cm (½in) strips making up 600g (about 1lb 5oz)
2 cloves garlic, crushed
freshly ground black pepper, optional
1 bunch fresh coriander (cilantro), chopped
juice of 2 lemons

Warm oil in a large soup pot and sauté onions until soft. • Add lentils, salt and 8 cups of water, cover with lid and bring to boil. Turn down heat and simmer for 15 minutes. • Add potato cubes and continue cooking for 10 minutes. • Add zucchini, silverbeet, garlic, pepper and 4 cups of extra boiling water, and cook for a further 5 minutes until the greens just start
to soften. • Stir in coriander and lemon juice, and ladle hot into soup bowls.

Per serve

1201kJ/ 287 calories; 19g protein; 6g fat (includes 1g saturated fat; saturated : unsaturated fat ratio 0.2); 34g available carbs (includes 5g sugars and 29g starch); 13g fibre; 457mg sodium; 1134mg potassium; sodium : potassium ratio 0.4.


Kate Hemphill is a trained chef. She contributed the recipes to Ian Hemphill’s best-selling Spice and Herb Bible. You will find more of her recipes on the Herbies spices website. Kate’s recipes are made with Herbies spices and blends, but you can use whatever you have in your pantry or that’s available locally.


Sogeri wild ginger (Zingiber officinale) is very high quality, hot, spicy and aromatic ginger with lots of flavour that’s produced in the Sogeri region of Papua New Guinea from rhizomes that have been harvested by cooperatives of local highland farmers. Prep time: 10 mins • Cook time: 5 mins • Serves: 4


16 green king prawns, peeled and de-veined, tails intact
2 tsp Sogeri wild ginger powder
2 tbsp freeze-dried green peppercorns
4 fresh garlic cloves
2 tsp coconut oil
2 cups Thai basil leaves
2 cups coriander leaves
½ cup Vietnamese mint leaves

To serve

1 cup (200g/7oz) Doongara low-GI brown rice, steamed

Pound ginger powder, peppercorns and garlic cloves in a mortar and pestle to create a paste, then coat prawns and leave to marinade, refrigerated, for at least 1 hour. • Heat a wok to high with coconut oil, then add prawns and all the marinade. Stir-fry for 3–4 minutes until prawns are opaque. Turn off heat, stir through herbs, and serve immediately with the steamed brown rice.

Per serve 

1360kJ/ 325 calories; 22g protein; 5g fat (includes 3g saturated fat; saturated : unsaturated fat ratio 1.5); 44g available carbs (includes 3g sugars and 41g starch); 6g fibre; 315mg sodium; 718mg potassium; sodium : potassium ratio 0.44.


The Glycemic Index Foundation, a not-for-profit health promotion charity, developed the GI Symbol program to help consumers make healthy low GI choices when grocery shopping easier. Foods that carry the Symbol have been GI tested at an accredited laboratory and meet strict nutrient criteria consistent with international dietary guidelines for kilojoules, saturated fat and sodium, and where appropriate, fibre and calcium.


Di Crisp from the GI Foundation reports that Helga’s Lower Carb bread range – 5 Seeds (GI 53), Soy & Toasted Sesame (GI 51) and Wholemeal & Seed (GI 53) – now carry the GI Symbol. Head over to Helga’s website to find out more including ingredients and nutrition information. Prep: 15 mins • Cook: 10 mins • Makes 2.

4 slices Lower Carb Soy and Toasted Sesame bread
1 (200g/7oz) chicken breast fillet, trimmed

2 tbsp pistachio dukkah
½ tsp dried chilli flakes
¼ cup labne
1 small avocado, mashed
2 small iceberg lettuce leaves, shredded
1 small cooked beetroot, coarsely grated
½ small carrot, peeled, shredded
½ Lebanese cucumber, thinly sliced
2 tbsp mint leaves, shredded

Place chicken in a medium saucepan. Cover with cold water. Bring to boil over a high heat. Reduce to simmer. Simmer, uncovered for 8–10 minutes, or until cooked through. Drain and set aside to cool 10 minutes. Shred. • Combine dukkah, chilli and labne. Spread labne over one side of the two slices of bread. Spread avocado over one side of the remaining bread. • Top the avocado with lettuce, beetroot, chicken, carrot, cucumber and mint. Sandwich together labne-side down. Cut in half. Serve.

Per serve (1 sandwich) 

2981kJ/ 715 calories; 42g protein; 45g fat (includes 9g saturated fat; saturated : unsaturated fat ratio 0.25); 28g available carbs (includes 9g sugars and 19g starch); 10g fibre; 460mg sodium (potassium data not supplied)