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Photo of Roy Walford Roy Walford

See Dr. Walford's answers to Ask the Scientists questions.

For the recipe for Roy's Supreme Vegetable Salad (as seen in Never Say Die), please click here.

Roy L. Walford, M.D. has been Professor of Pathology at the UCLA School of Medicine since 1966. His scientific career has been focused largely on research into the biology of aging. With pre-medical training at the California Institute of Technology and an M.D. from the University of Chicago, he is licensed to practice medicine in California and in Arizona, and is board certified in Pathologic Anatomy and Clinical Pathology. Previous positions have included: from 1962-72, Director of the School of Medical Technology, UCLA Hospital, 1971-80, Director of UCLA Blood Bank, 1990-94, Chief of Medical Operations, Space Biospheres Ventures (Biosphere 2), Oracle, Arizona, and visiting Professor of Surgery, University of Arizona. Advisor to the World Health Organization in Immunology; Counselor to all the International Histocompatibility Workshops; Senatorial Delegate to the White House Conference on Aging in 1981; Fulbright Research Scholar (for study in Germany, 1960, laboratory of Otto Westphal), and a Commonwealth Fund Fellow (for study in France, 1968, laboratory of Nobelist Jean Dausset). He was the physician inside Biosphere 2 during its first two years of closure, 1991-93.

Roy's Supreme Vegetable Salad

1/3 cup dry chickpeas (garbanzo beans)
1/3 cup dry lentils
1/3 cup brown rice
1/3 cup wild rice
1/3 cup oat bran
1 medium sweet potato
3 spears broccoli or 5 cups florets
1 carrots
3/4 cup raw mushrooms
6 cups (1 large head) romaine lettuce
1/2 cup parsley
1 large red pepper
2 medium zucchini or other summer squash
1 medium tomato
1/4 small head red cabbage
1 medium onion
16 ounces commercially prepared salsa, mild or spicy
4 tblsp. balsamic vinegar
2 tblsp. olive oil
1 hard boiled egg
3 ounces tomato paste


Soak garbanzo beans for several hours or overnight. Discard soak water. Combine garbanzos with lentils and add enough water to a 2-quart saucepan to generously cover beans. Bring to boil, reduce heat and simmer for 30 minutes. When cooked, drain any remaining water and cool.

The rices can be added to the beans, or cooked separately. To cook with beans, add an additional 1 cup or boiling water, the brown and wild rice to the simmering beans. Simmer an additional 45 minutes. Add bran during the last 10 minutes.

Hardboil one egg.

Meanwhile, steam the sweet potato for approximately 15 minutes, or until soft. Cool and slice into bite size pieces.

Steam the broccoli and carrot for 10 minutes, cool and slice into bite size pieces.

Slice mushrooms, tomato, red pepper, squash, and onion into bite size pieces.

Shred the cabbage and finely slice the parsley. Break or cut lettuce into bite sizes.

In a large salad bowl, combine all vegetables. Chop the egg and add to the veggies.

Drain excess liquid from the salsa in a strainer and blend together salsa, tomato paste, balsamic vinegar, and olive oil. Add to the bean-rice-vegetable mix and stir thoroughly.

Excellent served with a whole grain bread or pumpernickel roll. For more about Dr. Walford and his research, please visit his website. (


Scientific American Frontiers
Fall 1990 to Spring 2000
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