The house is spotless. The lawn is manicured, what more could you possibly clean?! How about your diet? Michelle Dudash, registered dietitian and chef, has a few tips and recipes to get your eating habits on track and you back in your bikini!
1. First and foremost, Dudash says to be ruthless! Give yourself a clean slate by "getting rid of anything with hydrogenated oils, lots of added sugar and sodium. Throw out anything past it's expiration date or that smells rancid. Donate the high sodium canned goods to a food bank and take the sugary beverages to the kitchen at work," Dudash said.
2. Dudash's second tip is to rethink your fridge! Consider replacing items in your fridge for a healthier option. For example, Dudash recommends changing from butter to soft spreads like Country Crock and Promise. She said that by doing so you are getting rid of hydrogenated oils, therefore no trans fat. Dudash also said that soft spreads have 70% less saturated fat than butter.
Another step in rethinking your fridge Dudash says, "keep snack vegetables on hand that are in season, such as asparagus, cauliflower, sugar snap peas, carrots, and zucchini. Wash and cut them up as soon as you get home, or buy them pre-cut so they're ready when you are. Hummus makes for a nutritious dip."
Dudash also offers these snack ideas:
- Stock flavored sparkling water and plain brewed tea, in addition to plain water.
- Always keep a few fresh lemons and limes on hand to perk up the flavor in chicken and fish entrees and steamed broccoli and spinach.
- Stock low-fat dairy including Greek yogurt, reduced fat cheeses, and low-fat milk to help you get your 3-a-day. Plain Greek yogurt can double as sour cream in many of your favorite recipes.
- Boil in-shell eggs once a week for a part of a quick breakfast or snack.
3. For a healthier pantry, Dudash has these simple changes to consider:
- Keep dried fruit and nuts top of mind by storing them in glass jars. Toss these into salads, cereal, oatmeal, yogurt, and rice dishes. Michelle teamed up with California Raisins and loves their recipe for Curried Chicken Salad. Raisins are a classic sweet treat that is a wise choice for snacking or as a delicious and healthful recipe ingredient, and just 1/4 cup of raisins counts as a serving of fruit for adults.
- Gear up for grilling season by stock salt-free seasonings to add zest to fish, poultry, and vegetables.
- Buy natural nut butters that are free of hydrogenated oils. Try almond or cashew butter for something new.
- Make bagged whole grains, like rice and quinoa, easily accessible by placing in glass jars.
- Replace the candy and cookie jars with a shallow bowl of fresh seasonal fruit on the counter top for a quick snack on the go. Countertop fruits in season right now include nectarines, oranges, and plums.
Buttery Citrus Sautéed Vegetables
Preparation time: 15 minutes
Cook time: 10 minutes
1-1/2 lbs. your favorite vegetables (red onions, zucchini, asparagus, bell peppers), coarsely chopped
3 Tbsp. Shedd's Spread Country Crock® Spread
1/4 cup loosely packed flat-leaf parsley, chopped (optional)
1 clove garlic, finely chopped
1/2 tsp. grated lemon peel
Heat Shedd's Spread Country Crock® Spread in 12-inch non-stick skillet; cook vegetables until tender-crisp. Combine parsley, garlic and lemon peel in small bowl; evenly sprinkle over vegetables in skillet; cook 1 minute longer.
See nutrition information for saturated fat content.
Nutrition Information per serving:
Calories 100, Calories From Fat 50, Saturated Fat 1.5g, Trans Fat 0g, Total Fat 6g, Cholesterol 0mg, Sodium 85mg, Total Carbohydrates 10g, Sugars 5g, Dietary Fiber 3g, Protein 3g, Vitamin A 60%, Vitamin C 150%, Calcium 4%, Iron 10%
Recipe courtesy of www.spreadsnutrition.org .
Curried Chicken Salad
Natural and golden raisins add perfect balance to this spicy chicken salad.
3 whole (6 split) chicken breasts, bone-in and skin-on*
Olive oil, as needed
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper; to taste
1-1/2 c. low calorie, low sodium mayonnaise
1/3 c. dry white wine
1/4 c. chutney
3 tbsp. curry powder
1 c. medium-diced celery (2 large stalks)
1/4 c. chopped scallions, white and green parts (2 scallions)
1/4 c. California natural raisins
1/4 c. California golden raisins
1 c. whole roasted, salted cashews
Preheat oven to 350°F. Place chicken breasts on sheet pan; rub skin with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Roast 35 to 40 minutes until done (170°F); set aside until cool enough to handle. Remove and discard skin and bones. Cut chicken meat into bite-size pieces.
For dressing, in bowl of food processor fitted with steel blade, combine mayonnaise, wine, chutney and curry powder; process until smooth and season to taste.
Combine chicken with enough dressing to moisten well. Add celery, scallions and raisins; mix well. Let stand in refrigerator for a few hours. Warm to room temperature, fold in cashews and serve