News Social Improvement
“A simple, fresh, and healthy take on some of Statia's most popular dishes”. That's how the local government of St. Eustatius is introducing the island's official new recipe book, officially called the Statian Nutrition Recipe Booklet. Under the title “Eating healthy in Statia”, the authorities want to inspire their people to think better about what they eat an why, and to pay more attention to the many fantastic local products in the area.
The Statian Nutrition Recipe Booklet
Healthy cooking on a tight budget is not easy. Nevertheless, it's a reality for much more than a few persons and families on the island of St. Eustatius, as well as in the rest of the Dutch Caribbean. Research has shown that a negative correlation exists between lower income and a healthy lifestyle, even though it doesn't have to be like that. In a place like Statia, for example, with its rich local cuisine and delicious local ingredients, tasty and healthy food does not necessarily have to be expensive. The island has lots to offer, including unique local bushes and herbs packed with vitamins and minerals.
“I personally love beans”, says Claudia Toet, Deputy Government Commissioner of St. Eustatius and author of the cookbook's foreword, “Canned beans are cheap, but dry beans are even cheaper and healthier. Let them soak overnight and use for delicious stews or salads”, she continues, “Beans are bursting with protein and are therefore a great meat substitute”.
The Statian cookbook was created in collaboration with the PAHO (Pan American Health Organization) and the people of Statia. The authorities asked any member of the community to contribute to the official book of Statian recipes, and the response was overwhelming. “We sincerely appreciate their input and are very grateful that locals put this booklet together”, said Carol Jack, director of the Social Domain on St. Eustatius, about the making of the booklet. “The recipes were adapted to a healthier version with the objective to remain tasty”.
For a healthier Statians on a healthier Statia
The main purpose of the Statian Nutrition Recipe Booklet is largely two-fold. In the first place, it encourages local residents to make healthier diet choices for the sake of their own and their family's health. The island provides plenty of wonderful and delicious ingredients to build a healthy, balanced, and tasty daily diet with. With the cookbook, the Social Domain hopes to bring this reality closer to more Statian households. That's also why a hard copy of the book will be distributed to every single household in St. Eustatius.
Secondly, the recipe book is meant as sustainable inspiration for local people to pay more attention to local products before considering spending money on products that are imported. After all, why would you pay money for importing something that you can find in Statian nature as well? That's not only unnecessarily bad economics, but unnecessarily bad for the environment and an unnecessary enlargement of the island's carbon footprint. Therefore, the Statian Nutrition Recipe Booklet is part of a more sustainable future for St- Eustatius and the Dutch Caribbean in all senses.
Download your own digital version of “Eating healthy in Statia” here.
The basis for this article was originally published on www.statiagovernment.com on December 8th, 2021.