HEALTHY HABITS CALENDAR By: Laura Haddox, NDTR
Small changes can make a big difference - every little thing you do adds up. In efforts to be a continued source of encouragement for you to stay positive, maintain focus on your health, and add some variety to your everyday life, we came up with a HEALTHY HABITS CALENDAR. It includes everything from increasing your veggie intake to self-care Sunday! You don't have to do them in any particular order, shoot to complete one block daily. Print it out and hang on your fridge to get the whole family involved.
STOCKING A HEALTHY KITCHEN
STOCKING A HEALTHY KITCHEN
By: Laura Haddox, NDTR
With schools closed and mandated social distancing guidelines in place, many are trying to ensure that they have enough food on hand. The recommendation is to store up enough food for your family for two weeks. Does that mean that you need to spend hundreds of dollars on food? No. Remember there are some that may not have the means to buy in bulk and by leaving items for others, we have the chance to allow everyone in our local communities access to food. Buying a few extra supplies may help reduce the stress and worry of not having enough. We here at the Y want to help make the whole process less overwhelming by giving you some ideas for your next trip to the grocery store. Below is a step by step guide to help you stock a healthy kitchen.
1. TAKE INVENTORY
Do a quick scan of your pantry and fridge. Throw out any expired or freezer-burned food to make room for new items.
2. MEAL PLAN
If possible, start your grocery list by meal planning. Based on your inventory, think about what favorite recipes you can make with items on hand and what you need from the store to complete the meal. That can include some food that you can prep ahead of time and freeze. Some examples are chili, soup, meatballs, pasta, sauce, etc.
3. MAKE A GROCERY LIST
Your list should include all major food groups and macronutrients: protein sources like beans, eggs, canned or lean meats, and fish that you can freeze. Carbohydrates, such as canned or frozen fruit(in 100% fruit juice) and vegetables(no salt added or rinse them to reduce sodium). Whole grains, including brown rice, quinoa, and 100% whole wheat or vegetable/legume-based pasta. Don't forget healthy fats like nut butter, nuts, and olive oil. Of course, your list should include fresh food as well; you will just want to plan to use those items first and save the freezer and other shelf-stable items for later. You can get the most out of your fresh food like cheese and produce by strategically planning when and how to use it. Another good idea is to purchase fresh foods with the best longevity, including root vegetables like potatoes, sweet potatoes, and onions, and also citrus fruits like lemons and limes, oranges.
Buying shelf-stable and frozen foods can sometimes mean higher sodium. Focus on purchasing flash-frozen items that are not in sauces or syrups. When it comes to canned vegetables, buy those that have reduced or no salt added. If you do purchase those with added salt, you can rinse them off to reduce the sodium content. An additional tip for cooking at home to control the total amount of daily sodium would be to use sodium-free spices and herbs.
Whether you use tap, bottled, or filtered water, make sure you have a source of safe water available to drink. If your family drinks milk and you want to buy more than what you have in your fridge, you can freeze it for about a month. Some separation may occur. Be sure to store in another container before freezing, leaving some room for it to expand. You can also purchase shelf-stable milk, such as Horizon Organic milk. You may want to have on hand Pedialyte and Gatorade in the instance that someone ends up having any type of illness at home.
Lastly, all the mom and dads out there of little ones and teenagers, make sure you have lots of snacks, snacks, and more snacks! Some healthier choices are fruits and veggies, baked chips, fishies, cheerios, raisins, graham crackers, yogurt, etc.
I hope you all found something in this post that makes stocking up a little easier. Here are some additional links for extra resources to help keep your family fed and healthy.
Food storage guidelines:
Some more ideas for foods to purchase:
Ideas for freezer meals:
HEALTHY BANANA BREAD RECIPE
HEALTHY BANANA BREAD RECIPE
Recipe adapted from ALLRECIPES almost no fat added banana bread
I put on my thinking cap to try to come up with a recipe that most people would have all the ingredients and wouldn't have to travel outside of the comfort and safety of your own home to make. So get your family off the couch and into the kitchen by whipping up this healthy and delicious banana bread. In addition to spending time with loved ones, this is also an excellent opportunity to teach our children and maybe even some adults life skills, like preparing healthy recipes. Enjoy!
· ¾ cups all-purpose flour and ¾ whole wheat or whole wheat pastry flour
· 3/4 cup white sugar
· 1 1/4 teaspoons baking powder
· 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
· 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
· 2 egg whites
· 1 cup banana, mashed
· 1/4 cup applesauce
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Lightly grease an 8x4 inch loaf pan.
In a large bowl, stir together flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and cinnamon. Add egg whites, bananas, and applesauce; stir just until combined. Pour batter into prepared pan.
Bake in preheated oven for 50 to 55 minutes until a toothpick inserted into the center of the loaf comes out clean. Turn out onto wire rack and allow to cool before slicing.
*Using all-purpose flour is fine if that is what you have on hand.
*To add a healthy source of fats you can add some walnuts
*Just for fun you can throw in some chocolate chips!
*Use this for a breakfast option by serving it with your choice of Greek yogurt or another low/no sugar added variety. My favorite is Vanilla OIKOS Greek Yogurt.
*I've used Greek Yogurt in place of the applesauce.