Wine, Milk in Tea, Dinner Salads

Q: How do the new, large wine glasses compare to a standard serving of wine?
Q: Is it true that a new study shows we shouldn’t drink milk in our tea?
Q: To make a salad that is the main dish, what and how much should I put in for protein?

Karen Collins, MS, RD, CDN
American Institute for Cancer Research

Q: How do the new, large wine glasses compare to a standard serving of wine?
A:
Wine glasses are becoming larger. A standard all-purpose wine glass has been about eight ounces for many years. Since wine glasses are not meant to be poured full, this eight-ounce glass fit a standard five-ounce serving of wine. Wine experts recommend filling a glass no more than one-third to one-half full, both to give air space to hold the wine’s aroma (bouquet) and to provide enough room to swirl wine in the glass. However, 12- to 16-ounce wine glasses have now become standard at many restaurants, hotels and homes. The problem is that if people fill these glasses beyond that one-third to one-half mark, “one glass” of wine can be two or more standard servings of alcohol. Some connoisseurs prefer glasses of 20 to more than 30 ounces, which can magnify the problem further. The best solution is to practice measuring water into wine glasses at home to train your eye to recognize a standard portion size. Then, regardless of your glass size, you will know when you’ve reached the recommended maximum that defines moderation, which is no more than one five-ounce serving of wine a day for women or two for men.

Q: Is it true that a new study shows we shouldn’t drink milk in our tea?
A:
One new study does suggest that milk may decrease the ability of black tea to relax blood vessels, which improves blood flow and perhaps protects against heart disease. However, this study involved only 16 women in one tea-drinking episode along with follow-up laboratory analysis. Previous research has suggested that a group of antioxidants in tea, called catechins, causes blood vessels to relax. Several earlier studies found that milk added to green or black tea caused little or no difference in the blood levels of catechins. Milk did not seem to cause any differences in antioxidant activity in the blood following tea consumption either. Further study is needed to see if the recent study’s findings are repeated. But regarding antioxidant and other possible cancer-protective effects of tea compounds, if you’ve been adding milk to tea, there’s no reason to stop doing so at this time. Experts remind us to create a health-promoting diet based on what overall research finds, rather than on any individual study.

Q: To make a salad that is the main dish, what and how much should I put in for protein?
A:
Salads are a great place to work dried beans into your diet. Choose about a half-cup (one or two large spoonfuls) of kidney beans, black beans, garbanzo beans or cubed tofu. You could also add one tablespoon to one-third cup of nuts, depending upon whether the nuts are the main protein source. Another option is to add lean animal protein, such as a half-cup of grilled chicken or chunks of seafood. Tuna is a good choice, but not if it’s mixed with lots of mayonnaise. If you want to include some cheese, use a little for flavor in combination with one of these other leaner sources of protein. If you used a half-cup of shredded regular cheese to supply all your protein, that addition alone would supply over 200 calories and at least half a day’s worth of saturated fat. Instead, use cheese for flavor and a minor part of your protein. Try Parmesan or feta to get plenty of flavor in a smaller amount.

Reprinted with permission from the American Institute for Cancer Research www.aicr.org

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