Five Ways to Make Your Kitchen Healthier
I often receive a lot of questions about how I cook or what do I use to cook for my family. While I try hard to help families make easy transitions that won’t break their bank accounts, here are my top five kitchen items that are better alternatives to cooking and baking.
#1. Himalayan Salt: Move over sea salt, there is a bigger crystal that provides more trace minerals than your refined counter part. Himalayan Salt has been around for centuries found in the mountains of Pakistan, India and other Asian countries. It is not until lately it is starting to get more attention. It actually helps regulate blood pressure and blood sugars while maintain a healthy pH level in the body. A little goes a long way, so be sure to play around with it in your cooking. We buy the big Pink Himalayan salt grinder from Cosco and call it “princess salt” for my daughter. I’ll probably have to get the black one as soon as my son realizes he’ll want Star Wars salt or something.
#2. Herbamare®: Toss out the Mrs. Dash and Lawry’s and replace it with this healthy seasoning blend. It has no additives or anti-caking agents which is a plus in my book. Mrs. Dash’s claims it is great for a low-sodium diet, but a recent NY Times article has stated perhaps we have been wrong on the sodium thing. Herbamare® has some of the blends you may recognize such as garlic, basil, rosemary, but other spices are added such as kelp and cress. Kelp is a sea vegetable high in natural iodine which is great for the thyroid and cress, a garden herb known for its peppery flavor. This can be found at your local Whole Foods Market. Just like the Himalayan Salt, a little goes a long way. I use it in just about everything I cook, especially roasted potatoes and to season my meats.
#3. Nutritional Yeast: Powdered Parmesan cheese is actually quite gross when you learn how much it is processed and really has little nutritional value unlike real parmesan cheese. Check out Nutritional Yeast, a valuable source of vegan protein in as little as 1.5 tablespoon (which has about 8g of protein!) and high in B Vitamins for the energy we need to keep up with out kiddos. Here is a hint. I bought the Red Star Nutritional Yeast in the shaker, then I buy the big tub of it and replace it in the shaker. It is nice to sprinkle on your soups, stews, pastas, eggs and popcorn.
#4. Grapeseed Oil: Canola is so 1990’s and a high GMO product. Grapeseed oil has only 1 gram of saturated fat, takes too high heat, which makes it an ideal baking oil. Make sure it is green though, if it is clear or yellow looking it has been refined. Just like olive oil, it is best to buy it in a dark bottle and stored in a cool, dark cabinet away from your stove.
#5. Sunbutter: Since you most likely will be going to a peanut and nut free school, Sunbutter is the next best thing to peanut butter. Made from sunflower seeds, this seed butter is high in Vitamin E, and a good source of Vitamin B5, manganese, copper, selenium and low in cholesterol. My favorite place to buy it is from Trader Joe’s, or you will pay about $2 more per tub at our other favorite store. It is a good idea to get your kids use to different flavors young and experiment with different types of nut butters. They all have different nutrient values that are important for us to get. I will purchase the travel packs on Amazon so I always have them in my purse and car in case of emergency.
There you have it, my top five items to replace in your kitchen cabinets. For more info on my Healthy Kitchen Makeover, visit www.healthyjasmine.comPosted on June 06, 2012 at 1:14 PM