With my wedding in about 6 months, I am focusing on eating cleaner, more nutritious foods. I want to feel my best on my wedding day so I need to make sure I eat right. I don’t believe in diets- and honestly I don’t want to give up wine/beer/desserts. Instead, I’m making an effort to choose whole foods over processed foods and veggies/fruit over sugary items. I used to be really good at this, but last semester I kind of let my habits slip when things got busy.
Eating healthier foods can be just as easy and quick as eating packaged foods. All it takes is a little bit of planning ahead on the weekends.
Here’s a list of my favorite foods to keep on hand for healthy eating during the week:
(1) Greek yogurt. Chobani has 3 new flavors that I recently discovered. I’ve tried both the cinnamon apple and blood orange. The cinnamon apple is delicious. It tastes like apple pie filling with ice cream to me. It is my new favorite flavor! The blood orange flavor is really good too. It’s tart, citrusy and refreshing. I think it’s tied with lemon as my second favorite flavor. I’ve yet to try passion fruit, but I can only imagine it’s delicious as well.
Greek yogurt is one of my favorite snack foods. It’s loaded with protein, making it a satisfying. If I’m eating one of the flavored kinds, I eat it as it is. Otherwise, I like to buy the plain yogurt and mix it with fruit or low fat granola.
(2) Fresh fruit. Fruit is the ultimate portable food since it’s easy to grab. My trick is to keep it out in the kitchen in a big bowl. If it’s in plain sight, I’m more likely to grab the fruit. Current favorites include clementines, grapefruits, bananas, and apples. If you want fruit to keep you full for longer, pair it with protein. A handful of almonds, string cheese or peanut butter are some of my favorites.
(3) Raw nuts like almonds, walnuts, and pistachios. These are great for snacking or sprinkling on oatmeal and salads.
(4) Veggies, whether they are frozen or fresh. Fresh veggies work well for dipping in hummus or making stir fry. Frozen veggies are a quick way to make a simple dinner. I’ve been loving the combination of mixed veggies with grilled chicken, avocado and brown rice. It’s a really simple quick meal but satisfying and healthy.
(5) Whole-grain goldfish crackers. Somedays all I want are carbs. Whole grain goldfish satisfy my craving. And the best part is that you can eat A LOT- 55 pieces for 140 calories. I keep a bag in my car for when I get hungry on the commute home (gotta love Houston traffic).
(6) Smoothies. I like to make “green monsters” by blending milk, fruit, and spinach together. As long as you add a banana for sweetness, you can’t taste the spinach at all.
(7) Dark chocolate for when the cravings hit.
(8) Homemade granola bars.
- 8 oz old-fashioned rolled oats
- 1 oz wheat germ (toasted) or ground flax seed
- 1.5 oz sunflower seeds
- 2 oz walnut pieces
- dash of salt
- 1 oz melted butter
- 1/4 cup peanut butter
- 6 oz maple syrup, honey, agave, simple syrup (any liquid sweetener)
- 2 tsp vanilla
- 1/2 cup chocolate chips
- 1/2 cup dried fruit of choice
Combine oats, wheat germ, sunflower seeds, walnuts and salt.
Mix together butter, peanut butter, sweetener of choice, and vanilla.
Add the liquid to the oat mixture and mix until fully combined.
Add chocolate chips and dried fruit.
Spread in a greased 9 x 9 inch pan.
Bake for 35 minutes or until golden brown at 300 F.
Let cool and cut into bars or squares.