Taking steps Wednesday

A rewarding Mediterranean lunch ( recipe below )

One of the characteristics of the Mediterranean diet / lifestyle is physical activity. Taking steps with your diet alone is not sufficient. Daily exercise of even 15 minutes a day is linked to living longer. The good news is that research has shown that it does not necessarily need to be vigorous exercise. The most important point to remember is that physical activity within a Mediterranean lifestyle is a state of mind. It is not one hour of intense exercise at the gym and then the rest of the time spent in a chair or on a couch. It is a somewhat constant state.
In the Mediterranean, walking to places is very common especially as people age, they tend to drive less and walk more. In smaller towns and villages, the locals complete most of their errands on foot or on a bike. That doesn’t mean that they are Joe Wicks´s and can run marathons or lift weights, it means that they are in good physical condition and especially for us older individuals it keeps us strong. Walking everywhere might not be feasible for everyone, but in your daily routine try not to sit most of the day. Do a little housework and gardening, cook and generally get up from a seated position every hour. Have a minimum goal of walking 5,000 steps a day, every day. You may wonder why not 10,000 steps? Actually there isn’t any scientific evidence that shows that you need that many steps a day to reap the benefits of exercise. A study published 2 years ago from Harvard showed that 4,400 steps a day can provide many benefits. Although the great outdoors is best, exercise can be done even in your home. I cant tell you how many times I have walked  round the kitchen table to get those minimum steps in for the day. So find your favourite music or podcast and start walking .As a guideline my ideal to achieve is a daily average 7,000.

Today’s Challenge: Take 5000 steps.

Now the reward for achieving your daily exercise quota. One thing the doctor did not omit from my diet was bread. In Portugal, rootling around in the bread bin, it will never be too hard to find day old bread, for which there are dozens of uses. This salad of crispy homemade croutons tossed with olive oil and herbes de Provence immediately came to mind, and this would add the baker´s touch to a born again salad of roasted peppers, a touch of fennel and some sprigs of thyme. A simple yet scrumptious Mediterranean salad. Just what the doctor ordered.

Roasted pepper salad with born again bread
Portion for one serving
4 baby pimentos,Red yellow orange and green, seeded and randomly chopped
2 pieces of fennel sliced into quarters
6 baby pear tomatoes
a scattering of home made Croutons, tossed in olive oil and herbes de provence

Put the peppers , fennel and tomatoes in a small roasting tray and toss with some olive oil and a few sprigs of thyme.Roast in a hot oven for about 15 to twenty minutes until the tomatoes start to wrinkle and the peppers are softened and have taken on a bit of charred colour.Toss the the croutons among the vegetables and return to the oven for 5 minutes more.Serve immediately.The salad is packed with flavour and coated in oil so should not need any dressing.Add a little vinaigrette if you like.

*For those who are new here, please note that you can click here and check the previous post. 


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