Fight flab with the "good fat" in these five superhealthy recipes.
Mark Langowski 1 / 6
Fight (Bad) Fat With (Good) Fat
If your goal is a flat belly, your best ally is omega-3 fatty acid, a lifesaving fat that reduces inflammation, controls hunger, switches off your fat genes, and moderates blood sugar. Here are some of the most unlikely—and delicious— ways for men to get the 1,600mg of daily omega-3s recommended for us by the National Institutes of Health.
Chia-Crusted Tuna with Wild Rice and Red Lentil Pilaf
Why It’s Superhealthy Tuna is one of the richest sources of omega- 3s on the planet; wild rice has twice as much fiber and protein as brown rice but fewer calories; and one teaspoon of ground mustard provides 100mg of omega-3s. Also, lentils boost fat metabolism and regulate your appetite because, as a slow-digesting fiber, they trigger the release of acetate, a molecule in the gut that signals the brain when it’s time to stop eating.
Ingredients 2 tuna steaks Olive oil 3 tbsp mustard seeds 3 tbsp chia seeds 3 1/2 cups beef broth 1 cup wild rice 1 onion, chopped 6 garlic cloves, minced 1/2 cup red lentils 1/2 cup wild white rice
Instructions Coat tuna with olive oil and mustard and chia seeds. Heat a cast-iron skillet to medium-high. Coat lightly with olive oil and add tuna to pan. Cook for 3 minutes, then flip and cook another 3 minutes for medium-rare. Let rest for 5 minutes and slice against the grain. For the pilaf, bring 2 cups of broth to a boil in a medium saucepan. Add the wild rice and cook about 30 to 40 minutes, then drain and reserve. Meanwhile, heat a medium saucepan over medium heat and coat with olive oil. Add onion and cook about 5 minutes. Add garlic, lentils, and rice; cook, stirring constantly, about 3 minutes. Add remaining 1 1/2 cups broth, bring to a boil, then reduce heat to low, cover tightly, and simmer for 20 minutes.
2. The Breakfast!
Breakfast Tacos with Purslane
Why It’s Superhealthy Purslane is a slightly bitter, salty green used in Mediterranean and Indian cooking—it was even a regular part of Gandhi’s diet. You can get it at farmers’ markets in spring/summer, but the most likely place you’ll find it is growing in the cracks of your driveway. Considered a weed by most, purslane has more than 1,000 IUs of vitamin A in a mere 1/2 cup, making it possibly the cheapest stealth health food in the world! Meanwhile, this dish’s omega-3 enriched eggs—laid by hens that are fed flaxseeds, chia seeds, and fish oil—are chock-full of protein, vitamins, antioxidants, and fat-fighting nutrients.
Ingredients Olive oil 1/2 medium onion, chopped 2 cups purslane, stems discarded 1 jalapeño or serrano chili, stemmed and minced 4 omega-3 eggs 4 corn tortillas Salt, to taste
Instructions Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium-low heat and coat lightly with olive oil. Add onion and cook until translucent, about 10 minutes. Add purslane and chili and cook until purslane is wilted, about 2 minutes. Beat eggs well and add to skillet (clearing a space for them), slowly mixing in the other ingredients as the eggs scramble. When eggs are almost set, heat the tortillas in a dry skillet. Season egg mixture with salt, divide among tortillas, and serve with your favorite salsa.
3. The Lunch!
Spinach Salad with Winter Squash and Walnuts
Why It’s Superhealthy A cup of winter squash provides one-third the recommended daily intake of vitamin C, a nutrient researchers say is directly related to the body’s ability to burn fat. Walnuts pack the best omega-3 punch of any nut or seed and are also loaded with disease-fighting antioxidants. This combination, says one recent study, is highly protective against heart disease. Walnuts also help reduce blood pressure and decrease blood-vessel inflammation when you’re stressed.
Ingredients 1 butternut (or other winter) squash, peeled and seeded, cut into .-inch cubes (about 4 cups) 5 tbsp olive oil 1 1/4 tsp salt 8 oz spinach 2 tbsp fresh-squeezed lemon juice 1/2 tsp Dijon mustard 2/3 cup walnuts
Instructions Preheat oven to 450°F. Toss squash with 1 tbsp olive oil to coat, season with 1 tsp salt, and spread in a single layer on a baking sheet. Bake, stirring after 20 minutes, until tender and lightly browned, about 30 minutes total. Add to a bowl with the spinach. Combine lemon juice, remaining 4 tbsp olive oil, mustard, and remaining 1/4 tsp salt in a jar and shake vigorously, or whisk in a bowl until emulsified. Toss dressing with squash and spinach and top with the walnuts. Tip: For texture and added health benefits, add 1 tsp chia seeds to the dressing.
Why It’s Superhealthy Just a couple of slices of anchovy pizza get you more than halfway to your daily quota of healthy omega-3s. The superfish is also rich in calcium and potassium (both essential weight-loss minerals) as well as vitamin A. And good news, cheese fans: With research continuing to show that high-fat products like cheese may help reduce the risk of obesity, dairy’s made a dietary comeback. Fontina comes jammed with high levels of butyrate, a fatty acid in the gut that’s been proven to boost fat metabolism.
Instructions Preheat oven to 450°F. In a large sauté pan over medium heat, cook the onions in a little olive oil until tender and beginning to turn brown, about 15 to 20 minutes, then let cool. If using pizza dough, roll it into a circle about 1/4-inch thick and 12 to 14 inches in diameter, then carefully transfer it to a pizza stone or baking sheet lined with parchment or sprinkled with cornmeal. Sprinkle the dough with about 1/4 of the cheese, then cover evenly with the onions, then the rest of the cheese, the tomatoes in a single layer, and the anchovies laid decoratively over the top. Bake for about 10 minutes, or until cheese is bubbling and the crust edges brown without burning.
5. The Snack!
Navy Bean Hummus
Why It’s Superhealthy Beans are a great source of belly-fat-fighting fiber: A single cup gives you nearly a day’s worth of omega-3s. Navy beans are packed with filling protein and brimming with vitamins and minerals. Studies show that navy beans in particular can help battle diabetes and obesity. Whole flaxseeds are high in omega-3s and can help fight symptoms of cardiovascular disease like hypertension, studies show.