From fermented foods and bone broth to coconut oil, matcha and more, here's to staying healthy in 2015
Many of us make New Year resolutions to eat healthy and stay fit, but it's not easy sticking to a nutritious diet. All too often, we end up consuming way too much yogurt and too many smoothies and we forget that healthy foods should taste good. But you should be able to eat healthfully without sacrificing flavor or quality. In fact, healthy foods should taste better than any other kind, since they feature fresh, organic ingredients. And Americans are increasingly turning to foods that are authentic, non-processed, unaltered and fresh, faced with foodborne illnesses, GMOs and other perils of commercial food.
Here are some suggestions, and some predicted trends, for healthy eating in 2015...and there's not a mention of yogurt or smoothies.
The most important tip is to avoid diet foods and fads. Protein shakes and processed low-cal foods are loaded with chemicals and sugar substitutes and really aren't good for your health at all. Make your own foods! It's easy to steam fresh veggies, cook your own tomato sauce for pasta, make your own soups and breads and even craft your own condiments, including ketchup, mustard, mayo and salsa.
Also, buy only organic and grass-fed meat and poultry and wild-caught seafood,to avoid antibiotics that are regularly fed to U.S. commercial cattle and farmed seafood.
A great way to be sure you're eating “clean” produce and other foods is to buy into a CSA, or community-supported agriculture program. You’ll receive a box of groceries each week full of fresh produce, herbs, vegetables, fruits and other seasonal items. Check out the CSAs offered through Los Poblanos, farmers markets
Consume more coconut oil
Add coconut oil to your diet. This superfood contains medicinal properties that are antibacterial, increase immunity, fight stress and even help your hair shine, Coconut oil can also improve your cholesterol and reduce your appetite, leading to weight loss. You can use for cooking, baking or just eat three teaspoons a day.
Braising is best
When it comes to cooking techniques for meat dishes, braising is making a comeback.This slow-cooking process involves searing the meat first, then cooking it off in a simmer in a flavorful broth of stock, wine or other liquid, usually in Dutch oven. The slow-cooking technique results in remarkably delicious flavor without the added calories of butter or other fats.
Make your own soup
It's a cinch to make your own soup, and this year, bone broth has become the soup of choice for its detoxifying, immune-boosting and anti-inflammatory properties. It's also low in calories and high in magnesium and calcium.
Feast on fermented foods
As more people turn to gluten-free diets to improve their digestion, fermented foods have become mainstream, since they contain live cultures, or are preserved in liquid, so their sugar and starches are bacteria-boosting agents. Once considered condiments or toppings, kimchi, sauerkrat, tempeh, yogurt and other fermented foods are now taking center stage.
Drink more Matcha
Made of green leaves ground into a fine powder, this frothy tea is a superfood in a cup, flavorful and extremely nutritious, with as many nutrients in one cup as in 10 cups of regular tea. Matcha tea can boost your metabolism, aiding in weight loss, and improve cholesterol.
Photo courtesy of Kalettes.com
There's a new superfood on the block, a hybrid of Brussels sprouts and kale known as a kalette. It resembles a mini head of purple kale and has a sweet and nutty flavor but it packs a potent punch of anti-cancer and detoxifying properties. There's also Broccoflower, a cauliflower with a greenish tint, and Broccolini, or broccoli crossed with Chinese broccoli.
The next time you need a jolt of java, order the Bulletproof Coffee, a new paleo-friendly black coffee drink with a shot of coconut oil or butter. The combination is supposed to help you focus and aid with weight loss, but it's not for everyone.