Eating well is way easier than you think.
If you’ve wondered what the best foods are for preventing diabetes, losing weight, or warding off Alzheimer’s, here’s the good news: it’s all the same. There’s one set of guidelines to healthy eating. That’s it. You don’t have to read a bunch of blogs or memorize lots of different rules to prevent all the chronic diseases. Phew! Isn’t that a relief?
Veggies, fruits, beans, fish, nuts and seeds, and whole grains – that’s mostly it. There’s not much more to healthy eating. Here are some recipes to improve your heart health. They’ll even help you lose weight while you ward off chronic diseases.
Eat Better with These Recipes to Improve Heart Health
1. Cauliflower Rice
You’ve probably had this feeling after a big bowl of pasta. Your belly feels way too heavy. You feel bloated.
Most of us can probably eat less starch. Here’s an idea. The next time you feel like rice, have some cauliflower rice instead. Grate that raw cauliflower, cook it up, and you’ve got a side that’s healthier than rice and will won’t make you feel half as bloated.
Raw grated cauliflower can also be used as a substitute for couscous in tabouleh, a Middle Eastern salad.
2. Roasted Chickpeas
When you feel like the munchies, this hits the spot.
It’s hard to find snacks that are actually healthy. Most granola bars, the many healthy-looking ones included, actually pack a lot of sugar. Chips, even kale chips, taste good because of all the salt put on them.
Roasted chickpeas is one of the healthiest snack ideas I’ve come across. Beans are protein powerhouses. We should all eat beans. They’re also full of fiber so you’ll naturally stop eating when your body’s had enough. This is one snack that hits the spot and won’t cause a problem with your calorie count. Be sure to click through and watch Nikole’s fantastic video.
3. Sauteed Zucchini with Mint, Basil, and Walnuts
Do you need new vegetable ideas?
Mint and basil are like peanut butter and honey. They’re a natural flavor combination. Sauté zucchini as you normally would, then toss in some mint, basil, and walnuts. That’s it. And it’s tasty.
4. Baked Egg with Garlic Kale and Sun-Dried Tomatoes
Eggs are a solid source of protein.
You often hear a lot about the cholesterol content in eggs. It’s true, egg yolk does contain cholesterol, but the importance of avoiding cholesterol is overstated. Our own cells make cholesterol. Egg yolks also have choline that is needed for our brains and for our liver detoxification processes. Eggs contain other valuable nutrients like zinc, iron, and omega-3 fats. You can’t beat how easy it is to bake an egg for a weekday dinner. And I am total agreement when this recipe calls for using eggs from a local farmer who treats the chickens kindly.
5. The Easiest and Best Baked Salmon
We should all eat fatty fish twice a week.
Salmon reduces your blood pressure, improves blood vessel function, and even helps ease inflammation. It’s easy to cook. And it’s delicious. This is a triple win.
Place the fish on a baking pan, spread with a basil pesto (for homemade pesto, blend together basil, olive oil, garlic, and a little salt and pepper) Bake at 350 degrees, allowing 10 min per inch thickness of the fish. You can also easily cook fish on the BBQ. Fish is done when it does not resist to being pierced with a fork. Take care not to overcook the fish.
6. Banana Almond Ice Cream Sandwich
Having banana soft-serve ice cream is like watching Star Wars. If you haven’t, well, jump on it!
Here’s how you make banana soft serve. Peel a banana. Freeze it. Blend it. Eat. That’s four steps, and we’re counting the eating.
If you feel like getting fancy, make it into a sandwich. This dessert is easy enough that you can make it a family kitchen adventure, and sophisticated enough that it can be on your list for your next dinner party.
Chew on this
Recipes are adaptable. They’re there if you need a template. When you feel like showing off your personality, do it! Toss in new herbs. Use different vegetables. Bake something instead of sautéing it. Cooking can be as fun as singing or making art, but tastier. Eat well and live well!