Alberta Cancer Foundation

Little Recipe Book on the Prairies

prairieeating_storyBased on nutritional meals using fresh, and whenever possible, local ingredients, perhaps the best feature of the 184-page tome is the inclusion of a four-week menu plan, complete with grocery lists.

Though it’s not just written for those with type 2 diabetes, the book was developed with the nutritional needs of these patients in mind, based on the concept that a “diabetes diet” can be healthy for all Albertans, say the authors in a press release.

With recipes loosely-based on the Mediterranean Diet, the authors say their research gathered on made-in-Alberta ingredients (meat and dairy, eggs, canola, barley, wheat, fruits and vegetables) reveals they have similar nutritional qualities to those found in the Mediterranean.

Each recipe contains easy-to-follow directions and simple ingredients, as well as nutritional information including calories, fat, carbohydrates, fibre and protein, so those whipping up the wares suggested in the book know exactly what they are consuming or offering their dinner guests. The colour photos throughout really help make the snacks and meals – which serve up everything from applesauce raisin cookies and egg-n-bacon sandwiches to savory beef and beans in wine sauce – seem achievable and approachable, even for the novice chef.

Quick storage tips and options for enhancing the recipes’ healthfulness are included on nearly every page – a welcome bonus. Other value-added, health-conscious features include tips for using herbs and spices to lower salt; “nutritional facts of the day” tables for planning meals; and indices to search for recipes by ingredients and meals. With more than 100 recipes, PPEP offers something for most tastes, with each daily menu averaging 2,000 kcal/day to 25 and 50 grams of fibre.

For more information or to get an e-version of PPEP, visit

A Quick Study

PPEP was pilot-tested on 15 people over 12 weeks with type 2 diabetes, who reported benefits of following the recipes as adding more structure to their diet, increasing their awareness of food choices, helping them buy healthier foods, blood-sugar control and achieving better “good” cholesterol.