Elana Horwich

Chef Elana Horwich

Chef Elana, owner of ‘Meal and a Spiel’, was recently featured in Locale Magazine as the ‘2016 Favorite Female Difference Maker in Los Angeles’.  She has appeared on numerous television and news shows as an expert on healthy cooking and lovingly shares delicious recipes and healthy eating tips on her website, through classes in Los Angeels and the East Coast and as the UCLA Women’s Cardiovascular Center and Barbra Streisand Women’s Heart Health Programs featured chef for our Taste of Health events.

Chef Elana regularly shares her knowledge and creative recipes with attendees at UCLA Women’s Cardiovascular Health Center ‘A Taste of Health’ events. She has developed an enticing recipe book filled with heartfelt recipes that are great for your body and soul. Attendees experience hands on cooking and then delight in the meal – with a spiel! Founded in 2010 by Chef Elana, Meal and a Spiel is a private cooking school based on the philosophy that anyone can learn to cook. Chef Elana offer classes, recipes, videos, guidance for healthy living, and of course, spiels. These gourmet recipes feature healthy alternatives and Mediterranean style cooking, are very friendly towards specific types of eaters including Gluten-Free, Paleo, Vegan, Dairy-Free, Low-Sugar. Read More >>

Mixed Vegetables

A few Heart Healthy Tips from Chef Elana!

  • Italians do not just use olive oil to keep their food from sticking. The real reason they use it is because it provides amazing flavor, and olive oil contains heart healthy omegas! So now, you have 3 reasons to use it liberally.
  • Try adding pumpkin seeds or pine nuts to your smoothies. They are an excellent source of plant-based protein, fiber, and heart healthy omegas. Not to mention they make your smoothies extra satisfying!
  • Toasted sesame seeds are one of my secret weapons. Sprinkle these seeds on almost anything. Chef Elana uses them on salad, fish and meat dishes, and vegetables, to name a few things. They add a nutty flavor and a crunchy texture, and of course, those awesome omegas. 

The Mediterranean Diet

The popular “Mediterranean diet” that you hear about today was patterned after the traditional diets eaten in Mediterranean countries

Traditional Mediterranean diets have:

  • An abundance of plant foods:  fruits, vegetables, whole grains, legumes, nuts, and seeds
  • Olive oil is the main source of fat
  • Moderate amounts of fish and poultry
  • Small portions of red meat served only once or twice a month; usually lean meats
  • Moderate amounts of dairy products (mostly cheese and yogurt)
  • Low to moderate amounts of eggs (zero to four times a week)
  • Low to moderate amounts of wine (1-2 glasses of wine per day), normally with meals
  • Use of fresh fruit as a typical dessert; low consumption of sweets
  • Fresh or minimally processed foods
  • Liberal use of garlic, lemon juice, fresh herbs, tomatoes, peppers

The basic message of the Mediterranean diet is to eat a plant-based diet that is low in saturated and trans fat, and move every day!

Some helpful tips: Adopt an old-style European approach to food and eating:  Think about your food choices; relax and pay attention to what you put in your mouth; avoid processed or packaged foods; drink more water and avoid soft drinks; eat a piece of fresh fruit for dessert; appreciate, savor, and enjoy every meal; and take a walk after dinner and stop to smell the roses! 

Find your care

Our women’s cardiovascular specialists provide comprehensive, targeted care. To learn more about our services, call 310-825-9011.