Added nutrients in Argentina Corned Beef

Added nutrients in corned beef
By Walter Ang
November 15, 2009
Manila Bulletin

Nutritionist and dietician Dr. Zenaida Fainsan Velasco explained the health benefits of nutrient-fortified Argentina Corned Beef at a recent installment of "Canned Cuisine Chef's Series" held at Living Well, The Podium. The series is aimed at presenting easy-to-prepare recipes developed by different chefs that use corned beef as the main ingredient.

Velasco has been teaching nutrition at the University of Santo Tomas since 1989. She noted that more than half of all child deaths are associated with malnutrition. Malnutrition includes both undernutrition, which results in weakened resistance to illness, and overnutrition, which can increase the risks for developing lifestyle diseases such as diabetes. "Malnutrition can also aggravate existing diseases or conditions," she said.

To engender healthy eating habits, Velasco stressed the importance of balance (eating just enough and not too much food), variety (having different types of foods), and moderation (monitoring the serving size of meals).

Velasco debunked the assumption that canned foods have less nutritional value compared to their uncanned counterparts. "Due to the science of nutritional additives, some canned foods are actually nutritionally superior in some ways compared to their natural form," she said. As an example, she noted that Argentina Corned Beef has 35mg of zinc and 20mg of iron.

Corned beef is a source of protein, which the body needs to develop muscles. Zinc helps children grow taller and strengthens their immune system, while iron promotes brain development and good memory. Together, zinc and iron promote children's physical and mental development.

Severe cases of protein deficiency can lead to Kwashiorkor, a condition that results in muscle wasting and mental retardation. Zinc deficiency can lead to blurring of eyesight, skin lesions and slow wound healing. Iron deficiency, on the other hand, can lead to anemia and fatigue.

Recipes were demonstrated by Chef Eugene Raymundo of Five Cows Ice Cream Bar and Restaurant, Chef Sam de Leoz Jr. of the UST-Institute of Tourism and Hospitality Management, and Chef Mia Carla Yan of the Heny Sison Culinary School and Magsaysay Institute of Hospitality and Culinary Arts.

Each chef presented a dish for "everyday meals" and a dish for "Weekend Couture Cuisine." "The wealth of Argentina Corned Beef recipes makes it possible even for the busiest moms to plan weekly family meals that are delicious and nutritious. We plan to hold more installments of the Canned Cuisine Chef's Series to encourage more mothers to bring out their inner chefs," said Melissa Lim-Lara, senior product manager of Argentina Corned Beef. "To get copies of our recipes, simply email us at"

For more "familiar" dishes, Chef Mia presented Argentina Corned Beef Frittata and Easy Argentina Shepherd's Pie. On the other hand, Chef Eugene featured his Flamenco Maki, a spicy twist to a Japanese dish, and his Argentina Cheese and Mushroom Penne, a way to bring this Italian dish closer to the Filipino palate.

Chef Sam shared his recipe for Farmer's Lattice Omelet Corned Beef Wasabi, where a squeeze bottle is used to spread beaten eggs onto a frying pan to create a lattice shape as it cooks. Nutmeg and wasabi are key seasonings that create interesting flavors for this dish. His Rosti and Apple Stack Corned Beef with Apple Vinaigrette Dressing is a fun way to make children (and even adults) eat more fruits and vegetables while introducing them to new flavors. It "sandwiches" corned beef, sauerkraut, french fries, and cheese between apple slices.