Leftover Pork Tenderloin Salad

I love to mix up textures in salads but also get as much color as I can for the variety of nutrients, vitamins, minerals, antioxidants and dietary fiber.  Eat the rainbow indeed!

Leftover Pork Tenderloin Salad with Veggies, Nuts, Seeds, Figs and a Balsamic Vinaigrette

Leftover Pork Tenderloin Salad

One of my favorite dinners is Apple Cider Brined Pork Tenderloin.  It is so lean and clean and flavorful.  

I make an apple cider from organic apple juice then create a brine to marinate two large pork tenderloins overnight.  

We’ll have one for dinner with roasted organic apples and carrots and some kind of greens.  Then I save the other one to use in a leftover pork tenderloin salad the next day.

The pork has such a delicious wonderful apple flavor that I love to add fruit to the salad as well as veggies and seeds.  

And then we dress it with a simple splash of balsamic vinegar and EVOO.  Super simple, nutritious and really delicious!

So this is what I put in the leftover pork tenderloin salad:

  • Cold leftover pork tenderloin
  • Lettuce
  • Rainbow carrots
  • Persian cucumbers
  • Specialty tomatoes
  • Dried Turkish figs
  • Sunflower and pumpkin seeds
  • Kalamata olives

Did you know how good Kalamata olives are for you?  Although they are high in fat, they are also packed full of nutrients and anti-oxidants.  

And I love figs because they are rich in minerals, like calcium (although I don’t usually eat a bite of the figs and olives together).  

Sunflower and pumpkin seeds (pepitas) add crunch as well as protein, iron, ALA, dietary fiber and Vitamin E.

I try to keep everything organic to avoid residual pesticides, too.  It’s all about nutrition but also feeding the bacteria in our gut to foster a diverse and healthy gut microbiome.

Exciting Scientific Research on the Gut Microbiome

Speaking of the gut microbiome… I watched a fantastic podcast from Dr. Rhonda Patrick, PhD at Found My Fitness.  

She talks with scientists at  Stanford whose research focuses on how food affects the gut microbiota and our health.  You can find the podcast here: How The Gut Microbiota Affects Our Health with Dr. Erica & Dr. Justin Sonnenburg.  

As far as the podcast, a few things really stood out to me.  

  • Research now shows that what we eat directly affects some organisms in our gut and we rely on the products of their metabolism, like short chain fatty acids.
  • Some of the more important bacteria are found at the end of the colon and they need various types of dietary fiber to live and thrive.  
  • Without complex dietary fiber the gut bacteria (gut bugs) don’t produce the short chain fatty acids we need to prevent inflammation, metabolic disorders, autoimmune diseases and even cancer.
  • Processed foods don’t contain complex carbohydrates and will break down before reaching the bacteria at the end of your gut.  They are not a food source for the important bacteria.  
  • The dietary fiber you need comes from a diversity of fruits, vegetables, lentils, beans, and whole grains.  The more diverse, the better.

I’ve also thought if you eat a lot of diverse real foods and mix up the whole grains, you should be covered – but now I’m really curious if this is true.  

Especially for people on a gluten-free diet?

So one of the things that really struck me from their discussion was that different fibers come from different foods.  

There is a specific fiber that comes from whole grains like wheat and barley.  And a different one comes from rye and oats.  Does this shift the presence of certain bacteria in the gut?

Because with Celiac disease, people have to avoid the protein gluten found in wheat, barley and rye because it causes an autoimmune response that damages the villi in the gut.  So are people on a gluten-free diet actually getting enough of the right types of dietary fiber?  

Antibiotics and Gut Health

One more thing I also found very interesting was that research shows broad spectrum antibiotics do wipe out a lot of the gut microbiota.  And it takes a long time for what are called the commensal bacteria to recover and rebound.  

But bacteria from a probiotic supplement don’t really become part of the commensal bacteria.  It only helps by acting as sort of a place holder until the native bacteria can regrow.  

That may also depend on what type probiotic you are taking as well.  Dr. Rhonda Patrick, PhD suggests a probiotic called VSL #3.  They discuss that research focusing on how to rebuild a healthy gut microbiome in someone where it has been compromised is somewhat limited.  

Fecal transplants from healthy individuals have worked.

Lizzy Dog
There is research showing that children who took antibiotics will do better if the family has a dog.  But you have to reduce new exposures to more antibiotics as well.

Then it blows my mind to think of all the possible things that might hinder that regrowth – like antibiotics in meat or pesticides in and on food.  What are the consequences of so much glyphosate in our food supply now?  

They have also published a book about their research, The Good Gut.

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Deana Larkin Evans

You get one life - do your best to ENJOY IT! So hi, I'm Deana. This food blog is all about cooking wholesome real food and developing gluten-free recipes for some of our favorite comfort foods. I had to start eating gluten-free in 2010, then cut dairy and casein (except for the occasional Parmesan) in 2014. We learned A2 casein (goat, sheep and buffalo milk) is easier to digest than the predominate A1 form in cow milk. So we brought back goat milk dairy into our recipes in 2016. Thank goodness, right! So I'm kind of a science nerd, too. In the '90s, I earned an undergrad degree in biochemistry from The University of Texas at Austin. Hook 'em! Then followed up with a PhD in biochemistry and a law degree from the University of Houston. I recently earned a certificate in genomics/sequence analysis from Johns Hopkins University, where I also took a very cool food microbiology course. Currently, I'm learning about the microbiome and gut health. And trying to come up with healthy recipes to feed those gut bugs! #feedthegutbugs

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