Calorie RestrictionThe best low-calorie recipes utilize calorie restriction so you enjoy great taste and life-transforming benefits.  So imagine how delighted we were when a new CR member wowed us with “Green Soup – Kristin,” a recipe that was so extraordinary we asked if we could share it.

Great recipes like this exemplify what a CR diet plan recommended by the CR Way is all about. CR Way travelers love life and want to enjoy everything it has to offer – including food and all the benefits we can get from it. Delicious, satisfying taste to savor in every bite is a starting point. We also want it to be nutrient dense – chocked full of nutrients per calorie. Heart-healthy, low-GI, high in beneficial phytochemicals, low in AGE (advanced glycation endproducts), and free of harmful pesticides and other dangerous chemicals are other characteristics we demand. And we often want it to enhance our functionality – that is, to increase our cognitive capabilities or to help us relax.

That’s a lot to ask, but so what? You are worth it, and so are we. Some might be daunted by such requirements, but most CR recipes are quite easy – taking just a few minutes to prepare. CR Way e-Books, The CR Way to Great Glucose Control and The CR Way to Happy Dieting have dozens of delicious calorie restriction recipes.

But before you link away, take a look at “Green Soup – Kristin” from our friend in Texas:

The avocado gives the silky texture that a cold soup should have… “I use my smoothie maker to combine all the ingredients and top it with edamame (out of the shell) for a little crunch.”

½                     Cucumber

½                     Red bell pepper

A few handfuls Spinach, kale, romaine

1 clove             Garlic

½                     Avocado

Juice of a small lemon

½ tsp                Ginger

A few sprigs     Coriander and parsley

Enough water to thin –

Splitting the recipe into two 295-gram (10-ounce) servings yields a grand total of 166 calories per serving. It’s high in complex carbs, low in simple sugars, high in healthful fat, and high in fiber – all of which help to keep a lid on the speed of glucose, getting to the blood. With all that nutrition and so few calories, you might not want much else to eat at that meal.

And look at how nutrient-dense it is. It supplies a whopping 200% of vitamin A RDA , 255% vitamin C RDA , and generous amounts of the B vitamins. It is also high in vitamin K, calcium, magnesium, copper, iron, and manganese.

The phytosterols (plant chemicals with structures similar to cholesterol) and related beta-sitosterols (β-Sitosterols) are also high, which may help reduce LDL levels. FYI:

β-Sitosterol is one of several phytosterols. Sitosterols are white, waxy powders with a characteristic odor. They are insoluble in water but soluble in alcohols.

Alone and when combined with similar phytosterols, β-sitosterol reduces blood levels of cholesterol, and is sometimes used to treat hypercholesterolemia. β-Sitosterol inhibits cholesterol absorption in the intestine. When the sterol is absorbed in the intestine, it is transported by lipoproteins and incorporated into the cellular membrane. Phytosterols and their saturated forms, phytostanols, both inhibit the uptake of dietary and biliary cholesterol, decreasing the levels of serum total cholesterol and of LDL. Because β-sitosterol’s structure is very similar to cholesterol, β-sitosterol takes the place of dietary and biliary cholesterol in micelles produced in the intestinal lumen. This causes less cholesterol to be absorbed.

Beta-sitosterol is also known as a phytoestrogen, (a plant-derived estrogen). Some phytoestrogens seem to play a role in inhibiting the body’s absorption of cholesterol. There is also some evidence (although inconclusive) to suggest that phytoestrogens may fight certain types of cancer.

Here is a research report, outlining some other potential benefits of the veggies used in Kristin’s recipe:

Antioxidant and antiproliferative activities of common vegetables.

Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry. 2002 Nov 6;50(23):6910-6.

Chu YF, Sun J, Wu X, Liu RH.

PMID: 12405796

The citation and abstract, presented here, are from the National Library of Medicine’s database of published medical literature (

Some of the ingredients’ special benefits, such as fighting cancer, are reviewed in The CR Way: “Many Foods Fight Cancer,” pages 160 to 162.

This recipe uses almost all raw ingredients, so formation of AGEs is minimized.

And what about the taste? We loved it! Avocado and garlic are always winners for adding delicious savory richness to recipes. And Kristin went even further – nuancing the basic flavors with sprigs of parsley and coriander and adding edamame for contrasting texture that makes eating the dish even more fun. Three cheers for Kristin’s ingenuity!

If you have recipes you would like to share, please send them to To enjoy extraordinary recipe and food ideas, gain access to the Recipes & Foods, Cooked and Raw forum by becoming a free Healthy Start member.