Delicious and Healthy Food Made Simple
In 2019, an annual meal planning survey showed that 77% of Americans would rather eat a homemade meal. The major reason why is because they want to get healthier (53%). We’ve got some great news for you. You don’t have to be a professional chief to enjoy delicious and healthy homemade meals every day. Today, we will learn about the top 10 healthiest foods, the Eat Well Guide Food Score, and 3 simple recipes.
Top 10 Healthiest Foods
- Berries – High in fiber, berries are naturally sweet, and their rich colors mean they are high in antioxidants and disease-fighting nutrients. Fiber helps keep your digestive system healthy and working properly.
- Fish – Fish can be a good source of protein and omega-3 fatty acids, which help prevent heart disease
- Leafy Greens – Dark, leafy greens are a good source of vitamin A, vitamin C, and calcium, as well as several phytochemicals (chemicals made by plants that have a positive effect on your health). They also add fiber into the diet.
- Nuts – Hazelnuts, walnuts, almonds, pecans — nuts are a good source of plant protein. They also contain monounsaturated fats, which may be a factor in reducing the risk of heart disease
- Legumes – This broad category includes kidney, black, red, and garbanzo beans, as well as soybeans and peas. Legumes are an excellent source of fiber, folate, and plant-based protein. Studies show they can help reduce the risk of heart disease
- Cruciferous Vegetable – These include broccoli, Brussels sprouts, cabbage, cauliflower, collard greens, kale, kohlrabi, mustard greens, radishes, and turnips. They are an excellent source of fiber, vitamins, and phytochemicals including indoles, thiocyanates, and nitriles, which may prevent against some types of cancer
- Yogurt – Yogurt contains probiotics or “good bacteria” that help keep our guts healthy. It’s also rich in calcium. Just 1 cup of yogurt provides nearly half the recommended daily value of calcium and delivers phosphorus, potassium, zinc, riboflavin, vitamin B12 and protein.
- Whole Grains – A good source of both soluble and insoluble fiber, whole grains also contain several B vitamins, minerals, and phytonutrients. They have been shown to lower cholesterol and protect against heart disease and diabetes
- Olive Oil – Olive oil is a good source of vitamin E, polyphenols, and monounsaturated fatty acids, all which help reduce the risk of heart disease
- Tomatoes – These are high in vitamin C and lycopene, which has been shown to reduce the risk of prostate cancer.
Eat Well Guide (EWG’s) Food Score
Every second, we are exposed to many chemicals that we may be unfamiliar with. It can become frustrating and overwhelming to shop products that support a healthy lifestyle. However, there is an app that can help make shopping easier.
The EWG app combines two resources: Skin Deep and Food Scores databases. The scores help make safer choices towards food and cosmetics products. All you have to do is search the product by name, barcode, or category, and EWG will score the product on a scale of 1-10. In the score scale, 1 is the best score, and 10 is the worst score. Apart from using numbers, the range is also color-coordinated with shades of greens, yellows, and reds. The scores are easy to interpret and backed by science that can be trusted.
Three concerns are measured when assigning a score. The first concern is nutrition. Getting our daily nutrition intake can be challenging, but the food score will help make the healthiest decision. The second concern is the ingredient. Some essential elements that the food score will measure include pesticides, food additives, contaminants, and antibiotics. The third concern is food processing, which may affect nutrition factors and more. For example, whole foods are the healthiest, and the EGW score will point you to less-processed options.
Delicious Healthy Recipes
Vegan Cowboy Caviar
TOTAL TIME:0 hours 45 mins
- 1/3 c.- lime juice
- 1 tbsp.- olive oil
- 1/2 – clove garlic, grated
- Kosher salt and pepper
- 1 – 15.5-oz can black-eyed peas, rinsed
- 1/2 lb. -Campari or plum tomatoes, cut into 1/4-inch pieces
- 2 – scallions, finely chopped
- 1 – yellow pepper, finely chopped
- 1 – large jalapeño, finely chopped
- 1 c. – fresh corn kernels, from about 2 ears
- 1 – avocado, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
- 1/2 c. – fresh cilantro, chopped
- Chips, for serving
- Mix all your prepared ingredients together and enjoy! That easy.
Vegetarian – Tomato, Peach and Basil Salad
TOTAL TIME:0 hours 10 mins
- 1/2 – small red onion, thinly sliced
- 1 tbsp. -red wine vinegar Kosher salt and pepper
- 1 lb. -heirloom tomatoes
- 1 lb. -yellow peaches or nectarines
- 2 tbsp. -olive oil
- 1/4 c. -basil leaves
- 2 oz. -feta, broken into pieces
- In a small bowl, combine onion and vinegar with 1/4 teaspoon salt. Let sit for 5 minutes.
- Cut tomatoes and peaches into wedges and arrange on a platter.
- Stir oil into onion mixture and spoon over fruit, then sprinkle with basil, feta, and cracked black pepper.
Grilled Chicken with White BBQ Sauce
PREP TIME:0 hours 5 mins
TOTAL TIME:0 hours 30 mins
- 4 lb. assorted chicken parts (thighs, drumsticks, wings)
- 1 recipe White BBQ Sauce
- Parsley leaves, for garnish
White BBQ Sauce
- 1/2 c. mayonnaise
- 1/4 c. cider vinegar
- 2 tbsp. horseradish, drained
- 1 tbsp. lemon juice
- 3/4 tsp. sugar
- 1/4 tsp. cayenne (ground red) pepper
- Heat grill on medium-low. Season chicken all over with 11/2 teaspoons salt and 1/2 teaspoon black pepper. Grill chicken, covered, 20 minutes, turning occasionally.
- While chicken grills, make White BBQ Sauce. Whisk together all ingredients, along with 3⁄4 teaspoon salt and 1/2 teaspoon black pepper, until smooth. Makes about 1 3/4 cups.
- Place 3⁄4 cup White BBQ Sauce in a bowl. Uncover chicken; generously brush with sauce. Turn chicken pieces over. Cook, brushing and turning chicken 2 more times, 5 minutes or until chicken is cooked through (160°F). Garnish with parsley; serve with remaining sauce.
Eating healthy does not have to taste bad or become a frustrating process. Eating healthy is about living our best life and enjoying every meal while we do. It is a journey full of color, new ideas, experiments, growth, energy, and laughter. Now that we know about the top 10 healthiest foods, the Eat Well Guide Food Score, and 3 simple but delicious recipes, it is time to cook.
Written by: Jazmin Miguel, FCC Marekting Intern
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