DETROIT -

If food is fuel, the seniors at The Village of St. Martha's in Detroit are getting a fill up.

On Tuesday, Chef Nezaa explained how using certain spices can actually boost wellness, especially if you're at risk for high blood pressure hypertension or heart disease.

It's all part of the American Heart Association’s work to improve cardiovascular health in high-risk populations.

The program, called "Check. Change. Control," is a traveling road show of sorts. The program focuses on educating at different seniors villages, focusing on the generation that has been brought up to cook food that may be good for the soul but bad for the body.

The program is working. At The Village of St Martha's, seniors have had four weeks of counseling screening and training. Some are already reducing their medications, just by what they're putting in their bodies.

Vegetarian couscous paella

Ingredients:

Vegetable oil spray

1 small red onion, chopped

2 teaspoons bottles minced garlic

1 ½ cups low sodium vegetable or fat free chicken broth

9-ounce package of frozen baby lima beans

1 cup frozen peas

¼ teaspoon of salt

1/8 teaspoon powered saffron or ½ teaspoon turmeric

1/8 teaspoon ground red pepper

1 cup couscous

1 medium tomato, chopped

¼ cup snipped fresh cilantro or parsley

 

Cooking instructions:

Spray a large saucepan or Dutch oven with vegetable oil. Place over medium high heat.

Add onion and garlic and cook until onion is tender, about five minutes.

Add broth, lima beans, peas, salt, saffron or turmeric, and pepper.

Bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce, cover and simmer for 10 minutes, or until lima beans are tender.

Remove from heat and stir in uncooked couscous, tomato and cilantro or parsley. Cover and let stand five minutes.