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World Chefs: Art Smith Shares Weight-loss Tips In Latest Book

By Richard Leong

NEW YORK (Reuters) – Celebrity chef Art Smith, who shed 100 pounds (45 kg) after being diagnosed with diabetes three years ago, shares his weight-loss tips and healthy recipes in his newest cookbook, “Art Smith’s Healthy Comfort.”

Smith, known for his Southern-inspired cuisine, has six restaurants dotted around the United States, including Table Fifty-Two in Chicago and New York’s Joanne Trattoria, which is a joint venture with the parents of pop star Lady Gaga.

Before opening his own restaurant the Florida native spent 10 years as the personal chef of media mogul and actress Oprah Winfrey. He has also cooked for President Barack Obama and other world leaders.

Smith, 53, spoke to Reuters about healthy living, losing a television job and cooking for former South African President Nelson Mandela.

Q: There are so many diet cookbooks out there. Why did you decide to do one?

A: With this book, it was first one that the publisher allowed us to include calories counts in. Before they wouldn’t do it … That showed how people have changed. When they asked me to write another book I said I don’t want to do a diet book. I want to show people more of a lifestyle, and how I eat and how I would like to eat. And what I did was that I put together a lot of delicious, healthy recipes.

Q: What were your food nemeses?

A: When I was diagnosed with adult diabetes, the doctor said, ‘Control your diet or I have to put you on medication.’ So I went on medication rather than address the diet. I did that for a year or so but I wasn’t getting better. One of the biggest problems with my diet was that I would use sugar and caffeine to keep my energy level high.

I am a bit of a high-strung person. I would be drinking six packs of diet sodas everyday and eating huge amounts of food at night because I hadn’t eaten anything else during the day.

Q: So your diabetes came at a crossroads in your life?

A: At 49, I saw myself in a not very good place with my health. I’ve cooked for billionaires, celebrities and all kinds of people. I was used to cooking food more on the healthy side for them. I have been doing it for years. Whatever diet they brought to me, I did it for them. I never liked diets. I don’t think they will work.

The word diet and the word gourmet really bother me because they segregate people from the table and from food. One is like ‘I’m not going to eat enough’ and the other one is too fancy to eat. I felt like I wanted to bridge the two together because I want to show people that they could have their health and feel comfortable about it.

Q: Do you think your weight loss affected your image?

A: I literally lost a television show with a major cable news network because of my weight loss, because they wanted a heavy-set chef just eating food across America, and I wouldn’t do that. I’m not going to be one of the types who is going to eat 50 doughnuts. That’s not the type of message I want to put out there.

Q: You have cooked for former South African President Nelson Mandela. What did you make for him?

A: I cooked for Mr Mandela three times. The first time I cooked for him, Miss Oprah said, ‘Mr. Mandela will come and visit.’ I don’t get star-struck but I was pretty star struck. I called his chef and asked him what he liked. He said he liked oxtail and he liked biriyani (an Indian rice dish).

Then Oprah called me and I was such a mess. At 35,000 feet or wherever they were in Oprah’s jet, she said Madiba (his clan name) just wanted to tell you the oxtail was pretty stellar. “Did we pack any on the jet?” I just feel grateful that I had the opportunities to cook for him and he enjoyed it.

Unfried Chicken with Roasted Brussels Sprouts (serves 4)

For the chicken:

1 cup buttermilk

1 tablespoon Louisiana Hot Sauce or other hot sauce

4 skinless and boneless chicken breasts, cut in half

1-1/2 cups multigrain or whole wheat panko bread crumbs

3 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese

2 teaspoons ground black pepper

1 teaspoon cayenne

1-1/2 teaspoons onion powder

1-1/2 teaspoons garlic powder

1 teaspoon paprika

For the Brussels sprouts:

16 Brussels sprouts, cut in half

1-1/2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

For the garnish:

1 lemon, quartered

To prepare the chicken: Preheat the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. In a mixing bowl, mix the buttermilk and hot sauce. Submerge the chicken pieces in the buttermilk and soak in the refrigerator for at least 1 hour but no more than 24 hours. In a gallon-size plastic bag, combine the bread crumbs, Parmesan, black pepper, cayenne, onion powder, garlic powder and paprika. Seal the bag and shake until well mixed.

Remove the chicken from the buttermilk and transfer directly to the bag with the bread crumb mixture. Shake the bag until the chicken breasts are evenly coated with the bread crumbs. Remove the chicken breasts from the bag and lay flat on a nonstick baking sheet. Refrigerate, uncovered, for 30 minutes. Bake the chicken for 20 to 25 minutes or until just cooked through.

To prepare the Brussels sprouts: Preheat the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. Place Brussels sprouts in a medium mixing bowl, toss with the olive oil, and season with salt and pepper. Spread the Brussels sprouts in a medium ovenproof baking dish and roast for 20 minutes or until caramelized and tender.

Divide the chicken and Brussels sprouts among 4 serving plates, and squeeze the lemon over the chicken.

Per serving: 427 calories; 12 g fat; 3 g sat fat; 79 mg chol; 349 mg sodium; 45 g carb; 6 g sugar; 9 g fiber; 40 g protein; 185 mg calcium

(Reporting by Richard Leong, editing by Patricia Reaney and Jackie Frank)

Original Story Here

Resources:

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Comments

  1. Reply

    What Can I Do To Guarantee Losing Weight And Toning In A Fairly Fast Way? I really need to lose weight and I have been having trouble.

    What workouts should I do?
    What foods should I eat?
    Which foods should I avoid?
    What is considered a “small” meal when people mention eating 5-6 small meals a day?
    How much water should I drink?
    What other weight loss and fat loss tips do you have?

    THANKS!

    View Comment
      • HealthNut
      • September 18, 2013
      Reply

      Drink Genmaicha green tea.

      it is a japanese natural tea, that helps with weight loss.

      http://www.o-cha.com

      View Comment
  2. Reply

    What Are Some Good Ab Exercises? I’m really skinny and I really don’t have any fat in the abdomen area, but I’m trying to get my abs defined. A lot of the articles for ab exercises I’m seeing have things like “fat loss tips for great abs”. Since I don’t need to lose fat, I’m wondering if I need to do different kinds of exercises than what those articles are suggesting.
    I’m also doing cardio exercises. Should I do ab exercises before or after I do cardio? Or should I do them at completely separate times?

    View Comment
      • HealthNut
      • September 18, 2013
      Reply

      They say so, because you do have fat on top of your abs, you just do not need to lose it anywhere else. Or little flab.
      jogging is an excellent exercise because it let you tone throughout your whole body. If you want to tone in
      specific areas, you should target them with exercises. If they are
      your problem areas, they will be very difficult to tone. You will have
      to work double on them. The best approach is this:
      1. Lower/control your daily calorie intake (control for normal
      weight, lower for overweight).
      2. Run/jog to lower your overall body fat percentage.
      3. Target your problem areas with exercises.
      an excellent exercise, you can do it in front of your TV: sit on a
      stool, and put your toes under something (piece of heavy furniture,
      for example). In your hands hold a little dumbbell. Please, make sure
      that it is not very heavy, start with one kilo, for example, or you
      will damage your back and spine! Slowly move the upper part of your
      body back, until it’s parallel with the ground. Stop for a second and
      move it back to the sitting position. Repeat ten times. Every week add
      to the number of repetitions. You will see the results in a week,
      guaranteed! You will see or feel under the fat – if you have any – six
      pack and muscles. Dumbbells do wonders. Much better than these
      crunches – I came up to three hundreds and there was no results AT
      ALL. With the dumbbells you will see it in a week.

      View Comment
    • Dasie
    • September 18, 2013
    Reply

    What Is The Best 12-week Diet Plan For Fat Loss? As the weather gets warmer we become more self-conscious about our weight. Since summer is right around the corner it is time to get our fat loss diet in check.

    What is the best 12-week diet plan for fat loss?

    What is a reasonable amount of weight to lose in 12 weeks?

    What are some important tips for someone who wants to lose the fat, but maintain their muscle gains?

    View Comment
      • HealthNut
      • September 18, 2013
      Reply

      Of course, there are a huge number of weight loss blogs to choose from. There are a number of medically supervised and very expensive calorie restricted programs costing thousands of dollars, however, that doesn’t make these programs effective. According to Gina Kolata, who did extensive research on the topic, the most popular diets are also ineffective for the vast majority of people over an extended period of time. If you embark on a 12-week diet, you will lose weight for the first 12-weeks and then re-gain the weight after that.

      To be effective, you must embark on a permanent lifestyle change that includes a radically different way of eating. I lost 90 pounds and kept it off without having to pay anyone for anything.I read “Eat More, Weigh Less” by Dr. Dean Ornish. Former President Bill Clinton reversed his heart disease and lost 25 pounds by eating the same low-fat whole plant based diet. His was supervised by Dr. Caldwell Esselstyn, Jr. at the Cleveland Clinic.

      My advice is to go to the web sites of the following experts to seek help:

      Professor Emeritus T. Colin Campbell of Cornell (he wrote “The China Study”)
      Dr. Neal Barnard (“Food for Life”)
      Dr. Joel Fuhrman (“Fasting and Eating for Health”)
      Dr. John McDougall (“The McDougall Plan”)
      Dr. Dean Ornish (“The Spectrum”)
      Dr. Caldwell Esselstyn, Jr. (“Forks Over Knives”)

      The “Whole Plant Based Diet” is the program that is ideal for optimal health and maintaining an ideal weight. It’s a lifestyle change, not a pill or a quick fix. If you are not in it for the long-term, your weight loss will not last.

      You can very easily lose 1/2 pound per week if you choose foods carefully and avoid commercially processed food like products. If you choose a medically supervised fast, you can expect to lose about 2 pounds per week of fat (the other weight is water weight and will come back on your body after the fast ends).

      Instead of dairy, choose leafy greens containing iron, calcium, and protein. Eat whole grains (brown rice, quinoa) and ligumes (peas, beans, lentils) for additional proteins. Take a B12 and D supplement if you go vegetarian.

      Instead of meat, pork, fish, poultry, eggs, or any other form of animal based foods, take the foods listed in the paragraph above and eat ground flax seed for Omega-3 Essential fatty acids. Otherwise, you do not need to eat any form of oil or fat. Even virgin olive oil contains saturated fats which are unhealthy for your cardiovascular system. A gram of fat/oil contains 9 calories and can increase your appetite.

      Eat lots of raw and cooked vegetables, and some whole fruits every day. Avoid commercially processed drinks that might contain refined sugar or artificial flavors (aspartame and MSG cause weight gain due to their effect on appetite).

      If you want to maintain muscle mass, learn free weight training. A pound of muscle is the energy equivalent to seven pounds of fat. Read about “vegan” body builders and athletes who focus on endurance sports. (Rip Esselstyn wrote an excellent cook book called the “Engine 2 Diet.” He and his father were world class athletes.)

      You can ignore most health information on commercial media. I have found that it is almost always misleading. Please read the publications of some of the independent experts listed above. Former President Bill Clinton reversed his heart disease and lost 25 pounds by following the advice of Dr. Caldwell Esselstyn, Jr. of the Cleveland Clinic.

      You can do this on your own, but if you want an optimal weight loss, I suggest that you follow a medically supervised water fast. Dr. Joel Fuhrman is the world’s leading authority on this. If you can get into one of his programs, that is ideal. Remember, for the diet to be effective you must change your eating habits for life.

      View Comment

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