Posted by: MMA | March 15, 2010

Monday 15 Mar 2010

Welcome to Meatless Mondays Australia!

Wow, isn’t the year just sailing by! The days are starting to get cooler and as we see more extreme temperature changes throughout Autumn, it’s important to keep ourselves healthy in preparation for the winter months. So let’s focus on the powerful effects of antioxidants and their role in maintaining our bodies in peak condition.

Antioxidants protect all the cells in the body, repel disease and promote good health by ridding the body of harmful free radicals. While free radicals occur naturally in the body, outside factors such as air pollution, smoking, alcohol, stress, infection and excessive sunlight increase their production. We need to try to counteract the damaging effects of free radicals by getting plenty of antioxidants into our diets. So this week we look at tomatoes, a food rich in antioxidants, we provide some delicious meat-free recipes that have tomatoes as their main ingredient, and since antioxidants are also known to preserve the skin’s natural glow, we have a face mask recipe so you can make your own antioxidant mask at home!

We would also like to invite you to join Meatless Mondays Australia in support of the Earth Hour campaign on Saturday March 27.  Read on to find out more and how you can participate too.

Please Make the Pledge by subscribing to our newsletter and join us in our commitment to Meatless Mondays – for the people, for the planet.

Make the Pledge!

Food of the Week


Tomatoes are a delicious, healthy and versatile fruit. They are available all year round and should form part of your regular diet.

Tomatoes contain:

  • Lycopene, a powerful antioxidant
  • Calcium, potassium, magnesium, phosphorus
  • Beta-carotene and folic acid
  • Vitamins A, C and K

Eating tomatoes has been shown to:

  • Protect against lung, colon, breast and prostate cancers
  • Boost immune function
  • Help prevent cataracts and macular degeneration
  • Assist mental function with ageing

To improve the absorption of lycopene, always eat tomatoes either cooked, as pastes, sauces or soup, or raw drizzled with a little extra virgin olive oil.

When buying tomatoes look for darker red, preferably organic, produce as this indicates a higher lycopene content. Store at room temperature until ready to eat.

And don’t forget to look for the locally grown product so you don’t add to your carbon footprint. If your greengrocer or supermarket doesn’t stock locally grown produce, please encourage them to do so.

Recipes of the Week

Dr. VB’s Tomato Salsa with Pita Bread Chips

4 large ripe tomatoes, diced
4 spring onions, sliced finely
1/3 cup coriander, chopped
1 tablespoon lime juice
3 rounds Lebanese bread, cut into triangles
2 teaspoons olive oil

Combine tomatoes, spring onions and coriander in a bowl. Add one teaspoon of the olive oil and the lime juice, then season with salt and pepper and mix gently.

Brush Lebanese bread triangles with the remaining oil and bake in a moderate oven 180 C for 3-5 minutes.

Serve salsa chilled with the warm pita chips.

Dr. VB’s Roasted Tomato Penne

500g cherry tomatoes, halved
1 red capsicum, seeded and diced
1 red onion, sliced finely
2 cloves garlic, crushed
100g baby spinach leaves
1/2 cup fresh basil leaves, shredded
1 tablespoon olive oil
300g penne pasta

Toss tomatoes, capsicum and onion in oil, garlic and sugar. Place in a roasting pan and cook for 5 minutes in a preheated 220 C oven. Turn once and cook for a further 4-5 minutes until the tomatoes are tender.

Cook the penne in a large pot of boiling water according to packet directions.

Drain the pasta. Add the spinach and toss until wilted. Gently toss through the tomato, capsicum and basil. Serve and enjoy!

Healthy Habits

As well as putting antioxidants in your body, why not put them on your body and enjoy the benefits both inside and out. This is a simple, easy home-made antioxidant face mask that will leave your skin silky smooth.

Smooth as Silk Face Mask

1/2 ripe avocado
1 ripe banana
2 tablespoons diced cumber
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons yoghurt

Place all ingredients in a blender and process.
 Apply a thick layer on your face, neck and hands and leave for 30 minutes.
 Wash with warm water then finish with a final rinse of cold water to tighten the skin.

Enjoy your rejuvenated silky smooth skin!

Save the Planet

Earth Hour – March 27, 2010 – 8.30pm

On Saturday March 27, nearly 100 iconic landmarks in 1,000 cities and towns around the world will switch off their lights for Earth Hour 2010 to show their commitment to saving the environment.

Earth Hour has grown from a one-city campaign in 2007 to a global phenomenon in 2009. The Great Pyramid complex, the Eiffel Tower, the Colosseum and the Olympic Stadium in Beijing are just a few of the world-famous landmarks that turned off their lights in support of the initiative to highlight climate change.

This year, the three tallest buildings in the world – the new Burj Khalifa in Dubai, CN Tower in Toronto and Taipei 101 in Taiwan – will also be going dark for the global event.

Check out the Earth Hour video to see more:

Join Meatless Mondays Australia and show your support for Earth Hour by registering here:


Did you know…?

Climate change is a fact, says China
11 March 2010

Read article at:

Sensitivity to the taste of fat in food can help beat the bulge
8 March 2010

Read article at:

Sports drinks bad for teeth
7 March 2010

Read article at:

Maccas and Weight Watchers to join forces
4 March 2010

Read article at:




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