Nutrition Around the World – Part 3
We are all taught from a very early age that different countries with diverse cultures exist around the world. Whether the country has only existed for a few decades or thousands of years, each one has differing views and traditions that they cherish in their own ways.
This implies that each culture views nutrition differently, which is reflected in their eating and drinking habits.
We are going to look at local eating habits from around the world, in the attempt to find a greater understanding of nutrition around the world.
The New Nordic Diet
We are traveling farther north of the globe for one of the more recent nutrition discoveries. So far North, in fact, that the most noted people in the history of the area are Vikings. You might be scratching your head in confusion, right now. After all, Vikings were mindless barbarians, right?
If you consider the well-kept records of the Ancient Nordic society, you would be surprised to find that Vikings were far more progressive minded, and had better health habits than most people in the period they were in. For instance, the Norse were notorious for their love of cleanliness. There were even grooming tools found in Viking burial mounds. They were also unusually enlightened when it came to the treatment of the women in their lives. The women could even own land and request for a divorce, something that was practically unheard of in Christianized Europe during the Dark Ages.
So, gather your helmets and shields, and yell out a battle cry, because we are going to be eating like Vikings today.
A “New Take” on the “Old Ways”
There is a wealth of knowledge when it comes to the historical accounts of the people of Scandinavian ancestry. This is because the modern Germanic language that people in the Scandinavian countries speak today is close to the dialect of their ancestors, making the translation of early records easy.
It is with these records and locally grown food sources of today that in 2004, chefs, and nutritionists in Copenhagen could put a new spin on a traditional diet. A lot of the food that grows locally in the areas share a similar ancestry to the modern vegetables that grow today. Unfortunately, similar ancestry does not mean ‘exact replica’. That means the diet is sort of a remixed version of what was commonly eaten in that period. In the latest study of the Nordic Diet, there has been a measured success in the reduction of blood pressure, the decreased risk of heart attack, and a decrease in weight gain. Granted, the results are not as successful as the Mediterranean diet, but it is still better than the average American diet.
The Basic Rules of Thumb for the Nordic Diet
- Eat Fruits, Vegetables, Berries, and Whole Grains most often. The basis of the diet is to eat the grain and vegetables from local farms and wild berries, herbs, and roots.
- The majority of healthy oils that are used for this diet would usually come from rapeseed.
- Eat lean meat in moderation, like fish, and game. While we might not have elk in the US, deer is a suitable substitute. Eggs are also eaten in moderation.
- Dairy is also another food to be eaten in moderation, mostly in the form of cheeses and yogurts.
- Rarely does anyone on the Nordic diet eat red meats and other animal fats.
- Absolutely, no added sugar on this diet or processed meats and additives.
Carrot Soup with Herbs
If you are looking for a recipe that will help scare away a cold, then look no further. This traditional Denmark soup is enough to warm your belly, boost your metabolism, and give you a nice herby flavor. Click on the photo for the recipe.
Roast Venison with Rhubarb Compote
This main course will make you feel like you are in the Scandies. It also packs a nutritious punch. With 28 grams of protein per serving and only 3 grams of fat, this venison will make you feel fulfilled. Click on the photo below.
Traditional Scandinavian Sugar and Spice Cookies
While normally reserved for Christmas, these small spiced treats are perfect for your sweet tooth. The sweetness of the molasses is contrasted with the spice of cinnamon, cloves, and ginger making it the perfect end of the meal. The recipe link is attached to the photo.