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Healthier Bites for a New Year

After cooking up a storm for two solid months, the rich, heavy holiday foods have done their damage.  Not only is it time to hit the gym three days a week for regular work outs , it is also time to change up the menu a bit and look at healthier options.

I  am such a lover of the cuisine that I post on my Blog, my Facebook page and here in these articles that it is sometimes difficult for me to stop, think and eat in moderation.  The bathroom scale usually is the one to tell me I have been indulging just a bit too much.

Thankfully, I find that I have been craving foods that are not only fresh but will also do a body good.  What it also means is I need to restock my pantry.  In doing a bit of research and talking to some of my colleagues, quite a few of them are in the same frame of mind and that’s when good recipes happen.  So keep your eyes on the page, there is so much more to come.

Here are a few food items to consider when you are looking for options to add to your own upcoming healthier menus.    

  • Olive Oil is rich in monounsaturated fats to help maintain healthier cholesterol levels.
  • Salmon and Tuna are rich in omega 3 fatty acids, which may help to decrease heart disease and stroke.
  • Tomatoes – Lycopene is an antioxidant found in tomatoes that may decrease the risk of cancers, particularly prostate cancer.
  • Green Leafy Vegetables contain flavonoids to help prevent memory loss and are also rich in carotenoids which help to ward off macular degeneration, a leading cause of blindness.
  • Whole Grains – Whole wheat bread, wheat bran cereals and whole wheat pastas contain high levels of insoluble fibre for gastrointestinal health.

I am frequently pressed for time, so snacking with the grab and go option in mind is a huge issue for me.  Since I am well aware of this, packing the cupboards with dried fruits, baked potato and tortilla chips, bagel and rice cakes will definitely keep the fat levels down.  So will stocking the fridge with salsa as a low fat dip and frozen non-fat yogurt as a suitable replacement for ice cream.  I make sure that I toss a few of these items in to my grocery cart with each trip to the market to avoid the excuse that I didn’t have time to prepare anything healthy.

In my recent searches for fast, filling and fresh, I have found a salad that is quick, good for the bod and best of all, tastes fantastic.  Since bell peppers and I do not get on well, I finely chop tomatoes and toss them in as a substitute.

Mediterranean Salmon Salad

  • 1/2 c uncooked orzo
  • 2 (6 ounce) salmon fillets (about 1 inch thick)
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/8 teaspoon black pepper
  • Cooking spray – preferably olive oil
  • 2 cups torn spinach
  • 1/2 cup red bell pepper
  • 1/4 cup green onions
  • 4 kalamata olives – pitted, chopped
  • 3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons crumbled feta cheese

Directions

  1. Preheat broiler.
  2. Cook pasta according to package directions, omitting salt and fat.
  3. Sprinkle salmon evenly with salt, oregano, and black pepper. Place on a broiler pan coated with cooking spray. Broil 10 minutes or until fish flakes easily when tested with a fork or until desired degree of doneness. Let stand 5 minutes; break into bite-sized pieces with 2 forks.
  4. Combine pasta, salmon, spinach, and remaining ingredients in a medium bowl; toss well.

It is so important that we enjoy what we eat.  Healthy does not mean food with out taste and while I do not eat the healthiest cuisine every day,  I have learned to eat the more robust  foods with moderation.  I encourage you to mix up your menus and to add a few low-fat options to your meal planning each week.  Experiment, ask questions and before you know it, healthy will be full of flavour.

 

You can find me every day on my  Facebook page and my Home and Living Column.  I would love to see you there as well, so swing on in and say hello.

 

 

About Basil & Salt Magazine (781 Articles)
Basil & Salt Magazine is filled with recipes, cocktails, wine, beer and travel recommendations, focusing on the enjoyment of the gourmet lifestyle. Our first issue will print and be distributed in September of this year. ~Please join us and poke the 'subscribe' button on the menu to receive exclusive content found only on our printed pages.

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