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10 Healthiest Foods To Have in Your Pantry (Part 1)

1. Healthy oils such as extra-virgin olive oil and virgin coconut oil. A healthy omega 3 fat that supports the body’s proper regulation of omega 6 and omega 9 fats, extra virgin olive oil can be utilized for lower temperature cooking, vinaigrettes, or drizzling over vegetables like just sliced tomatoes and hand-torn basil or boiled potatoes and snipped chives.

Tip: Use virgin coconut oil, high in valuable medium-chain fats, for medium and higher temperature cooking, baking, as well as in smoothies and sandwich spreads.

2. Dried lentils, chickpeas, black beans etc., or low-salt canned beans (with no preservatives or additives). Legumes provide a good source of protein, soluble fiber and amino acids.  Plant proteins, such as legumes, tend to be limited in one or more essential amino acids. For example, beans are low in the amino acid lysine, while rice is rich in lysine.  People following a vegetarian diet should eat protein foods that have complementary proteins so that the essential amino acids missing from one protein food can be supplied by another.  Note: Contrary to popular belief, proteins can actually be combined within a 24 hour period rather than each meal.

Tip: Use lentils instead of chickpeas in your next batch of hummus.

3. Canned salmon and sea vegetables (dried seaweed).  Packed with heart healthy omega 3’s, salmon in a can can make a convenient and quick, high quality protein meal if you can’t get the fresh stuff.

Tip: Got some green beans, peppers, tomatoes, onions and olives?  Toss em’ in a bowl with some of your best olive oil and vinegar.  Add fish and you are good to go!

Seaweed offers one of the broadest ranges of minerals of any food, containing all of the minerals in the ocean as well as many of the same minerals found in our blood. It has fucoidans, starch-like molecules containing many chemical “branch points” and sulfur atoms.  It is from these fucoidans that we see the inflammatory, anti-cancer, anti-coagulant, anti-thrombotic and anti-viral benefits.  Seaweed is also a great source of iodine, vitamin K, folate and magnesium and a good source of iron and calcium.

Tip: You can make vegetable sushi by wrapping nori strips around brown rice and your favourite vegetables or combine soaked arame or hijiki with finely sliced carrots, ginger and scallions and tossing with olive oil, tamari and a squeeze of lemon.  Click here for instructions on how to make a delicious seaweed salad!

Stay tuned for 7 more of my healthiest pantry staples!

Cat Dillon

This blog is my journal, where I share everything wellness. From tips on healthy lifestyle to creating as much deliciousness in your life as possible.

Cat Dillon is the Cat in Caterpillar Nutrition and Wellness.

Caterpillar Nutrition and Wellness is a unique combo of nutrition, fitness and cooking coaching all in one pretty package. Read more about Caterpillar Nutrition and Wellness.

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