Healthy Cooking Class: Fibre, Grains, Low GI Carbohydrates

Carbohydrates are found in a variety of foods and provide the body with fuel (energy). They include rice, breads, grains, dairy, fruit, cakes and biscuits. Many foods containing carbohydrate also provide fibre, vitamins and minerals. Carbohydrates break down into glucose during digestion and are absorbed into the blood stream.

The type and quantity of carbohydrate foods you eat will affect your blood glucose levels. Glycaemic Index (GI) is a measure of how quickly or slowly a carbohydrate food is digested and increases blood glucose levels.

Health Benefits of Lower GI Foods:

–  They result in a slower rise in blood glucose levels after eating

–  They result in a lower “peak” or rise in blood glucose levels

–  They provide a feeling of fullness for longer and therefore may assist weight control

Fibre, particularly soluble fibre can lower GI. Add fibre to breakfast cereal; add salad vegetables to a sandwich or add lentils to soup. Protein as part of a meal can lower the GI. Combine a serve of fish, lean meat, skinless chicken,  egg or tofu with a serve of a lower GI carbohydrate food and plenty of low carbohydrate vegetables in meals.

Today’s class, the students prepared Ricotta Pancakes. By using rolled oats as the base and added fiber from sunflower seeds, chia seeds, and flaxseeds, as well as protein from eggs and ricotta, this breakfast meal or snack is an ideal way to utilize ingredients to make the meal not just low GI but packed full of essential vitamins and minerals.

healthy cooking class

The result was delicious, and the students shared their healthy creation with the ladies from student support! See the recipe below 🙂

Ricotta Pancakes


What’s good about it:

Ricotta and eggs are a good source of protein, which sustains lean muscle and supports a healthy metabolism. Oats are a great source of soluble fiber that not only fills you up, but also helps delay stomach emptying, so you feel full for longer.  According to studies, the beta-glucan fiber found in oats can help regulate your appetite for up to 4 hours as well as help lower cholesterol. Cinnamon improves insulin’s efficiency, which helps regulate blood sugar levels.


3 free range eggs
1 tablespoon flaxseed, chia seed, sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds

1 cup (100 g/3  1/2 oz) rolled oats

½ cup of almond meal

1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
150 g  (3/4 cup / 5  oz)  good quality deli style ricotta  (see notes)
1/2 cup (125 ml/4  1/2 fl oz ) your choice of milk (almond, rice, seed, coconut,  dairy)

Combine eggs, milk, oats, almond meal, cinnamon, baking powder and flax seeds, chia, sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds – rest for 15 minutes to soften the chia and oats. Give it a mix half way through resting.
Add ricotta and break it up into the pancake mixture.
Heat a non – stick pan over a low – medium heat with a little macadamia nut oil, olive or coconut oil and spoon in the pancake mix, 2 tbsp of mix per person.
Flatten the top out slightly from each pancake.
Turn down the heat and cook over a low heat so that it cooks through.
Flip over and cook the other side.
Serve with blueberries, thick organic natural yoghurt , banana + a little raw honey


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