Healthy Cooking Must-Haves

July 19, 2016 No Comments

Category: Healthy Eating
Tags: Healthy Eating, cooking must-haves

Healthy eating has become a priority to me since my diagnosis. As explained in Food for Thought, I try to restrict carbs and sugars from my diet since there’s a strong correlation between what you eat and how you feel. So, my cooking philosophy is pretty simple: I cook easy, low carb/sugar, nutritious meals in 30 minutes or less.  I don’t believe in using a lot of ingredients or complex recipes – all that equates to is a mess in my kitchen and time I don’t have. I stick to lean proteins, tons of veggies and avoid cards (especially those with gluten) and sugar as much as possible. I not only feel good about the healthy dishes I make but think the meals are delicious too. Win, win!

Before I kick off the new series, Tasty Tuesday, where each Tuesday I feature a new, healthy dish that meets this criteria, I want to make sure you have the “essentials” stocked up in your kitchen to ensure you’re prepared. I use these ingredients frequently, and consider these staples to cooking a healthy meal:

  • Sea salt – less sodium than regular salt and I think it tastes better because of the crystal texture!
  • Extra Virgin Olive Oil– I not only cook with it daily but often use it with lemon for salad dressing
  • Earth Balance butter spread – so much healthier and less fattening than regular butter
  • Spices – my go-to’s are chili flakes, cumin, and oregano
  • Herbs – I prefer fresh but it’s also good to have dried rosemary and thyme in your pantry
  • Honey – natural sweetener that you can swap for sugar and keep in your pantry for 10 years. I don’t use this often but it’s good to have!
  • Minced ginger – I personally love the taste of ginger and it’s an anti-inflammatory so I try to incorporate it often to help with MS symptoms
  • Lemon and garlic – These two items add a lot of flavor to any dish without the calories
  • Dry white wine (like a Pinot Grigio) – I keep a bottle in the fridge for marinades  and when I’m cooking protein. Just a splash or two adds a punch of flavor

I’ve found if you keep these healthy basics stocked up at home, you’re already off to a good start with your diet. It takes no time or extra effort to buy sea salt instead of regular salt, for example, and you’ll minimize your sodium intake without even knowing it. I recently learned that people with MS who have a high sodium intake have about a 3 times higher risk for exacerbations in symptoms as well as disease activity than those with low sodium intake. Minimizing and/or nixing salt seems like a no brainer! Spices, herbs, wine, lemon and garlic go a long way with flavor so you don’t need to add all that extra salt, cream or butter.

What are the healthy staples that you stock up on? Tell me in the “Comments” – I’m always looking for new “must-haves”!

*If you’re curious about learning more about salt intake and MS, click here.

Category: Healthy Eating Tags: , Comments: 0


0 thoughts on “Healthy Cooking Must-Haves

  1. Avatar for Angie Rose Randall


    I feel like onion is also good for flavor without salt or calories.

    • Avatar for Angie Rose Randall


      Yes!! That’s a great option and adds a lot of flavor!

  2. Avatar for Angie Rose Randall

    Carolann Randall

    Lemon Pepper is one of my favs!

    • Avatar for Angie Rose Randall


      Great one!!

  3. Avatar for Angie Rose Randall

    Ashley Zeal

    Have you tried ghee instead of butter? I will never go back! And they have it at Trader Joe’s! Love this series… keep em coming!

    • Avatar for Angie Rose Randall


      Thanks for the tip!! I’ve never heard of that! I’ll have to go check it out.. I’m obsessed with all things Trader Joes!

  4. Avatar for Angie Rose Randall

    Steven Confessore

    Hope your first day at work went OK. I know that Chloe was happy to see you when you got home. Thinking of you always.

    Sent from my iPhone


    • Avatar for Angie Rose Randall


      Thanks, Steve!! It’s a hard adjustment but hopefully time will help. Great seeing you guys. Hope you made it home soon

  5. Avatar for Angie Rose Randall


    I have the opinion that what you eat will also dictate what course this dis-ease will take so I think it’s key to pay attention to what one consumes.

    • Avatar for Angie Rose Randall


      Thanks for your comment! Yes, I definitely agree. What you eat is critical!

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