With summer just around the corner, many people are going on diets to reduce their waistlines, but dietitians are raising awareness about how you can reduce your risk for heart disease. May is Mediterranean Diet Month, and experts say following this diet has been shown to cut down risk for the disease. The Mediterranean diet is primarily plant-based foods, such as fruits and vegetables, whole grains, legumes and nuts. The Dietary Guidelines for Americans recommends this specific diet as an eating plan that can help promote health and prevent disease. Alex Miller with Medifast shared some heart-healthy diet tips and prepared the Mediterranean recipe for Stuffed Cucumber Cups. Check out the recipe below!
Stuffed Cucumber Cups
70 calories per serving
8 grams of carbohydrates
2.5 grams of protein
What you'll need:
½ cup diced bell pepper (any color)
1 vine ripe tomato, seeded and finely chopped
½ red onion, diced
¼ cup black olives, pitted and chopped
¼ cup reduced-fat feta cheese, crumbled
1 teaspoon dried oregano
¼ - ½ teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
½ teaspoon lemon zest
½ cup fresh parsley, chopped
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
Salt & ground black pepper to taste
2 English cucumbers, seedless
- In a large mixing bowl, combine the bell pepper, tomato, onion, olives, feta, oregano, lemon juice, lemon zest, parsley and olive oil. Season with salt and freshly ground black pepper.
- Make the cucumber cups by peeling the cucumbers partially, alternating thin strips of skin with peeled strips, both of which go down the entire length of the cucumber.
- Trim the ends of the cucumbers and cut each cucumber into slices about one-inch thick. Scoop out the center of each slice with a melon baler to make a nest for the Mediterranean salad.
- Scoop about one to two tablespoons of the salad into each cucumber cup. Enjoy immediately or cover and refrigerate for later.
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