Water-rich foods help slim your waistline

February 27, 2012

Diet, Food, Health, Recipes

Researchers have concluded that the water in some foods fills you up, so you eat less.

by Joanne Henning Tedesco — 

Recent studies conducted at the University of Tokyo and Pennsylvania State University revealed that women who ate a diet rich in high water-content foods had a lower BMI and smaller waistlines. Researchers have concluded that the water in some foods fills you up, so you eat less.

You can make this strategy work by adding more of these fruits and vegetables to your meals, including broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower, grapefruit, lettuce, radishes and spinach — all are at least 90 percent water.

This time of year, your local farmers’ markets offer a great selection of water-rich vegetables and fruits. Here are recipes to help you get started.

Red Cabbage and Apple Salad With Ginger Vinaigrette


  • 3 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons grated, peeled fresh ginger
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • 1 teaspoon honey
  • 1/2 teaspoon minced garlic
  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • Kosher salt and black pepper, to taste
  • 2 cups packed shredded red cabbage
  • 2 cups packed shredded Napa cabbage
  • 2 cups thinly sliced Granny Smith apple
  • 2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
  • 1/4 cup golden raisins, plumped in hot water
  • 1/4 cup toasted, unsalted sunflower seeds


Whisk together vinegar, ginger, mustard, honey and garlic in a small bowl. Whisk in olive oil, salt and pepper; set aside. Toss cabbages together in a large serving bowl. Toss apple slices with lemon juice to keep from browning. Add apple, raisins and half the sunflower seeds to cabbage. Toss with the dressing. Garnish servings with remaining seeds. Yield: Four 1-1/4 cups servings.

Grapefruit-Avocado Salad


  • 1/3 cup orange juice
  • 1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 3 tablespoons lime juice
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 1 avocado, peeled, seeded and cut into 1/2-inch chunks
  • 1 peeled pink grapefruit, cut into sections
  • 1 peeled navel orange, cut into sections
  • 1/2 red pepper, chopped
  • 4 minced green onions
  • 4 cups field greens


Combine orange juice, olive oil, lime juice and honey in a food processor or blender, or use a handheld immersion blender, and process for 1 minute until smooth and creamy. Combine the remaining ingredients (except the greens) in a large glass, stainless steel or glazed ceramic bowl. Toss with half of the dressing to moisten. Serve over field greens. (Serving size: 1 cup greens, about 1/2 cup grapefruit mixture, and 2 tablespoons dressing.) Serve with remaining dressing. Yield: Four servings.

Celery, Radish and Parsley Salad


  • 3 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • Dash finely grated lemon zest
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1 cup thinly sliced radishes
  • 1 cup thinly sliced celery
  • 3/4 cup lightly packed chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley


Whisk together lemon juice, zest, salt and pepper in a small bowl until the salt is dissolved. Whisk in olive oil; taste for seasoning, adding more salt and pepper, if needed. Toss radishes, celery and parsley in a large bowl. Drizzle the salad with the dressing and toss to evenly coat.

Golden Potato-Cauliflower Soup


  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • 1 cup cubed French or Italian bread
  • 2 teaspoons olive oil
  • 1/3 cup finely chopped shallots
  • 1/3 cup finely chopped celery
  • 2-1/2 cups sliced cauliflower (about 1/2 small head)
  • 3/4 pound sliced, peeled Yukon gold potatoes
  • 2 (14-ounce) cans fat-free, reduced-sodium chicken broth
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground red pepper
  • • 1 teaspoon lemon juice
  • • 2 teaspoons chopped chives (optional)


Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. To prepare croutons, combine cumin and oil in a bowl; add bread cubes and toss to coat. Spread bread cubes on a baking sheet. Bake for 10 minutes or until golden. Cool croutons slightly; set aside.

To prepare soup, heat 2 teaspoons oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add shallots and celery; cover and cook 2 minutes. Stir in cauliflower, potato, broth, salt and pepper; bring to a boil. Reduce heat, cover and simmer 15 to 20 minutes or until vegetables are tender. Add lemon juice. Place vegetable mixture, in batches, in a food processor; process until smooth. Divide soup evenly among four bowls; serve with croutons and top with chives.


Sources: www.myrecipes.com, www.allrecipes.com, www.eatbetteramerica.com and Joanne’s recipe box.

Reprinted from AzNetNews, Volume 29, Number 2, Apr/May 2010.

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