Creativity is the best way to approach making changes, and instead of implementing sweeping changes, which are never very comfortable and are likely going to lead to disappointment, build changes into what you normally do. Excess weight, to varying degrees, is a problem across the globe, yet highways are jammed with motorists.
Instead of approaching fitness by trying to add to your already jam-packed day, trying to build some fitness into your existing schedule is the easiest way to implement change. Park a mile from your job, leave your car in a commuter lot, and walk the final mile. Adding healthy foods to our diet should be done in much the same manner: instead of adding a meal of vegetables, add vegetables to your meals.
That said, the 8 powerfully healthy foods you should have on-hand are as follows:
Fruits and Vegetables
There are simple things we can do to get more fruits and vegetables into our diet. First, there are 5 things I like to always have in the fridge as a basis for cooking: garlic, onions, potatoes, limes and lemons. One of the perks of limes and lemons is that they can be sliced, put in wax paper, and frozen in single-serve packs to use for steaming, as ice cubes or in cooking.
In addition, heartier vegetables like kale and shredded cabbage can be used to make salads in the winter months, and a variety of slaws in the summer months.
Fruits, like mango and avocado, can be found in grocery stores, coast-to-coast, year-round. These are 2 delicious ways to get more fruit in your diet.
There is so much I can say about how beneficial this is, and the highlights are that it is a good source of protein and many key nutrients. It can be used to top oatmeal, on top of a baked potato seasoned with chives, and also as a healthier alternative to mayo. It can be especially tasty when adding a bit of vinegar to it and using it in place of mayo on sandwiches.
Eating a variety of nuts will get you protein, omegas, excellent fats and most are rich in either vitamins B, E and magnesium. Many nuts come in great flavors, infused with wasabi, soy, habanero and a variety of spices, making them a tasty treat. Nuts do have a high caloric content, so consuming them in correct portions is necessary. They are a great source of protein also.
Extra Virgin Olive Oil
This should definitely be on the shelves of any person concerned about eating healthier. There is literally a plethora of evidence about the wonderful cardiovascular benefits one can enjoy by having adequate amounts of EVOO in their diets.
Using it is as simple as adding a drizzle over salad, cooking vegetables in it with some spices, and when combined with vinegar, it becomes a go-to starter for dressings.
Filling, healthy and a great palate to build a meal upon, eating more whole grains, like brown rice, quinoa and oats, helps lower our risk of developing heart disease and helps control diabetes for a number of people. In addition, they are a good source of antioxidants and minerals.
My cabinet is always full of both bags of dried beans as well as canned beans. They are a wonderful source of protein that are both low-fat and inexpensive. Beans are a nutritional wonder from being a staple in burritos, to a main ingredient in chilis and pureed beans can be used to replace oils in baked goods.
It used to be that I would not travel without Cherrios. Well, I grew up and now I don’t travel without a tuna packet! The tuna packets come in all flavors, and there are now even salmon steaks in the tuna packet section of your grocer’s aisle. The best part is fish has many types that are rich in omega-3 fatty acids and seafood overall can be a very low calorie, low-fat, excellent source of protein.
Puree, when combined with plain, fat-free yogurt can mark the start of something great! It is also a great source of beta carotene, vitamin C and potassium. Thick winter soups also usually start from a pumpkin-based broth also.
Being good to your body is important, and such good can come from trying to make changes to your diet, it would seem antithetical not to at least try to get more of each of these sources of nutritional power. The old adage, we are what we eat, is really quite true. The better the stuff we put in, the better off our overall health can be.
Finally, everyone should have one day each week in which they eat what they want. There is beauty if balance. Get creative.