Infra-red Salad- by Brea Peck
Navajo Sand Painting, Source Unkown.
I chose to focus on the color red for my offering to the year of the snake, as red is the color assigned to the snake. I chose the title because snakes use infrared sensing to navigate (also I love a good pun). I thought a lot about the color red and how popular this color is in restaurant advertising. I've heard various reasoning such as, the color makes you feel hungry, it is a primal color as it is the color of blood, or that it is a passionate color. What about this color red that has the longest wavelength that relates us with food? Perhaps the warm color red and yellows often seen on fast food signs make us salivate at the thought of warm cooked food so conveniently on our way home. Ancient Egyptian doctors would use colors for health and healing and red was believed to energize the liver which is a part of the digestive system (Singh). Perhaps we all have subconscious infrared snake vision.
In thinking about red produce I found beets and radishes to be of interest. Being a vegetarian I try to get creative with my veggies. I found these red foods to be high in antioxidants. The antioxidants are said to protect cells against oxidants. Oxidative stress occurs when oxidants outweigh antioxidants, so it is important to eat antioxidant rich food. Oxidative stress may result in cardiovascular, neurological, renal, skin, respirator, liver diseases, as well as diabetes, inflammatory problems and different viral infections (Irshad).
My salad ingredients were beets, red radishes, olive oil, salt, pepper, lemon juice, pesto and feta cheese. Snakes need an iron rich diet and beets are a great source (Beetroot 101). They are oh so delicious after being roasted in the oven, and they turn an indulgent deep red color. Radishes have health benefits including in antioxidants, vitamin E, A, C, B6, K, iron, zinc, fiber, potassium, magnesium, copper, and calcium (Nandy).
“Snake/Dragon Ying/Yang Symbol Round Wall Decal | Zazzle.Com"
The salad offers balance of the snake and dragon with its two main ingredients (beets and radishes). Beets are an ideal snake food and is a summer produce, aligning with the snake season. The snake represents yin and has a sweet taste. The dragon represents yang. The winter bidder radish compliments the snake.
Whenever I think about radishes I think about my mom. I noticed her craving radishes and I asked her why she liked them so much. She explained to me she had cravings for dirt while she was pregnant with me, and that radishes satisfy the craving because of their earthly taste. Pica is a craving for non food substances and is common in pregnant women. This may be linked to iron deficiency and perhaps the snake energy was having her crave the earthy taste (Pica Cravings).
You can't go wrong with this health packed earthly salad. Embrace your snake side and give it a try whether your craving iron, looking for antioxidants or having pica cravings. Food is medicine!
Beetroot 101: Nutrition Facts and Health Benefits. https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/foods/beetroot#nutrition. Accessed 26 May 2020.
Hox Zodiac. http://hoxzodiac.com/wheel/animals.html. Accessed 26 May 2020.
Irshad, M., and P. S. Chaudhuri. “Oxidant-Antioxidant System: Role and Significance in Human Body.” Indian Journal of Experimental Biology, vol. 40, no. 11, Nov. 2002, pp. 1233–39.
Pica Cravings - American Pregnancy Association. https://americanpregnancy.org/is-it-safe/unusual-cravings-pica/. Accessed 26 May 2020.
Priyadarshini Nandy 0 Health Benefits of Radish: The Power Source of Potassium, Vitamin C and Fiber - NDTV Food. https://food.ndtv.com/food-drinks/10-incredible-radish-benefits-the-power-source-of-potassium-vitamin-c-and-fiber-1397076. Accessed 26 May 2020.
“Red Snake” Poster by Adumbratio | Redbubble. https://www.redbubble.com/i/poster/Red-Snake-by-Adumbratio/30563905.LVTDI. Accessed 26 May 2020.
“Snake/Dragon Ying/Yang Symbol Round Wall Decal | Zazzle.Com.” Zazzle. www.zazzle.com, https://www.zazzle.com/snake_dragon_ying_yang_symbol_round_wall_decal-256079264045798849. Accessed 26 May 2020.