By Barbara Day, M.S., R.D., C.N.
When you are trying to move to a healthier diet, organizing and planning your meals is essential. By stocking your pantry with easy, accessible healthy foods can be the first step in creating a healthy meal. Next, make sure your refrigerator is loaded with foods that can be help enhance your meal choices by adding condiments or dressings like tomatoes and fresh spinach or romaine lettuce which will provide an array of extra nutrients. For example, making a turkey wrap with dressed with spinach and tomato and having carrots dipped in hummus. A well stocked freezer can also be beneficial especially on the days when you are too busy to decide on a healthy menu before you go to work. Check out the lists below and develop your weekly shopping list from the suggestions.
Stock Up Your Pantry with Healthy Foods
Here are some healthy pantry items for quick meals:
- Whole Wheat Couscous
- Quick Cook Brown Rice
- Whole Wheat Pasta
- Bulgur Wheat
- Wheat Berries
- Whole Grain Bread
- Whole Grain Sandwich Thins
- Ground Flaxseed or grind your own
- Canned Tomatoes
- Tomato Sauce
- Tomato paste
- Canned Salmon
- Canned Tuna
- Boboli® Pizza Sauce
- Boboli® Whole Wheat Pizza Crust (can be frozen)
- Fat Free Low Sodium Chicken Broth
- Extra Virgin Olive Oil
- Peanut Butter
- Almond Butter
- Thick Salsa
- Dried Beans, Lentils etc.
- Canned Beans –Black, Kidney, Navy, etc.
- Steel Cut Oatmeal
- Dried Fruits like raisins, cranberries
- Nuts like Walnuts, Almonds, Pecans etc.
- Balsamic Vinegar
- Frosted Mini-Wheats
Stock Your Freezer with Healthy Foods
Here’s Some Healthy Freezer Items for Quick Meals:
- Frozen Vegetables
- Frozen Unsweetened Fruits (can be used in smoothies or cereal)
- Chicken Breasts or Chicken Tenders
- Frozen Healthy TV Dinners (for emergencies) – such as Kashi® Meals, South Beach® Meals, Healthy Choice® Meals
- Frozen Alaskan Wild Salmon
Stock Up Your Refrigerator with Healthy Foods
Here are some healthy foods for quick meals:
- 100% Liquid Egg Whites
- Skim Milk
- Mozzarella Cheese
- Reduced Fat Cheddar Cheese
- Whole Wheat Tortillas
- Turkey Breast, Lean Ham
- Spinach, Romaine Lettuce, Tomatoes, etc.
- Carrots, Cucumbers, Peppers, etc
- Greek Yogurt – assorted flavors
- Reduced fat mayonnaise & other reduced fat salad dressings of choice
Barbara Day, M.S., R.D., C.N., is a registered dietitian with a Master’s Degree in clinical nutrition. The former publisher of Kentuckiana HealthFitness Magazine, Kentuckiana Healthy Woman magazine and radio show host of Health News You Can Use, Barbara has over 30 years of experience in promoting healthy lifestyles to consumers. Barbara worked as Nutrition Consultant to the Navy SEALs (8 years) and the University of Louisville Athletic Department (10 years). Barbara has private practice, DayByDay Nutrition, www.DayByDayNutrition.com, where she counsels clients on weight loss, cholesterol management, performance nutrition and an array of other medical issues. Visit Barbara’s new website which is an on-line health & wellness magazine, www.KentuckianaHealthWellness.com. Barbara writes nutrition and health columns for www.LiveStrong.com as well as a weekly nutrition column for the Southeast Outlook. She also designs and presents employee wellness programs to small and large businesses. Barbara is a runner, cyclist, hiker and a mother and grandmother to 12 grandchildren.