Dr. Andrew Weil Offers Sage (and Tofu) Advice at True Food Kitchen

Categories: Events

It was standing room only last Thursday at True Food Kitchen at the Biltmore, where nutrition and health expert Dr. Andrew Weil weighed in on healthful breakfast options and answered audience questions about everything from vitamin deficiencies to quinoa (which isn't a grain as most people think, but is in the beet and chard family). 

The audience lapped up his tips like a strawberry-soy smoothie, many of which were based on his famous anti-inflammatory diet pyramid.

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Dr. Weil (left) with Chef Michael Stebner, who whipped up a tofu and soy chorizo scramble for the audience.

Lest you think Dr. Weil's diet means resigning yourself to tofu and rabbit food, he's quick to point out that he loves leftover Chinese food and cold pizza just like everyone else. The trick? These two supposedly "bad" foods can be part of the two most healthful diets on the planet: the traditional Asian diet and the Mediterranean diet. 

More tips and a Q&A with Dr. Weil, after the jump...    

The cool thing is that, unlike the old-school USDA Food Pyramid, Dr' Weil's version is flexible depending on your dietary concerns and preferences.

Not to say you can move dark chocolate to the base of the pyramid and vegetables to the "use sparingly" pinnacle -- there are some rules that always need to be followed. But people with Celiac disease can substitute rice pasta, for example. And Dr. Weil completely avoids meat and dairy in favor of incorporating more vegetables, soy, fish and pasta.

This delicious tofu scramble with soy chorizo is on True Food Kitchen's new breakfast menu.
​According to Dr. Weil, about 30% of the calories we eat should come from fat. "Don't be afraid of fat," he quips. "Fat does not make you fat!" Good to know. Of course, he's probably talking about healthy fats like olive oil and avocadoes, not Krispy Kreme.       

We had a few questions of our own for Dr. Weil.

Chow Bella: What's the best advice for people who live in a hot, dry climate like we have in Phoenix?

Dr. Andrew Weil: Drink plenty of water. The anti-inflammatory diet [available on his website at www.drweil.com] I think is a diet that will reduce allergic responses in most people.

Often I find that if people reduce or eliminate cow's milk in all of its forms, that's helpful for allergies. And increasing consumption of omega-3 fatty acids, that's helpful for skin. Make sure you get enough of the good fats -- avocadoes, olives...

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