Five Must-Eat Foods to Keep Your Wellness on Track in the New Year
As our society becomes more health conscious, healthy food alternatives are introduced by the dozens each year. Things we would never think to put on our plates are appearing in trendy restaurants around the globe. The emergence of these foods keeps us abound with healthy and tasty options to substitute in place of the ever-present cheeseburger and fries.
- Quinoa: America is eagerly accepting quinoa as the new rice. It is popping up on menus all around the country in bowls, pancakes and burgers. Prepared similarly to rice, quinoa is literally harder to pronounce than it is to cook (it’s keen-wah, by the way). The superfood contains more protein than any other grain and is packed with all nine essential amino acids.
- Nut Milks: Almond and coconut milks are tasty, healthy replacements for those who are non-dairy. Coconut milk, made from the coconut, is a great source of lauric acid which has antiviral activities linked with improving cholesterol levels and heart health. It has a thick texture similar to heavy cream and is great for thickening smoothies and soups. Almond milk made from almonds is another healthy dairy replacement. It is full of E and B vitamins and calcium giving you the same benefits as regular milk. Almond milk is also very easy to make at home. All kinds of varieties of nut milks are appearing in more and more supermarkets and coffee shops around the U.S. making them a convenient option to replace your cow milk.
- Nut-Milk based Yogurts: If you’re cutting out dairy milk you might want to consider a new way to still have your yogurt parfaits in the morning. Almond milk and coconut milk based yogurts also make tasty and less-fattening options to Greek and other dairy yogurts! These yogurts are great for cooking and thickening other recipes when milk won’t do the trick. Next time you make a smoothie replace your Greek with coconut yogurt to add some sweetness.
- Seaweed: While the thought of grabbing a big handful of seaweed out of the ocean probably doesn’t make your mouth water, this green is showing up in more than your sushi these days. Its ability to absorb nutrients from the sea keeps it loaded with high protein and mineral content, not to mention it has more vitamin C than oranges. This green is especially beneficial to the ladies as it contains lots of iodine, which is great for maintaining a healthy thyroid and helps regulate estrogen levels.
- Jackfruit: Say hello to the new tofu. Jackfruit is becoming more and more accepted as a common plant-based meat replacement in many vegan homes in America. The Asian fruit is being hailed as a ‘miracle crop’ that could save millions from starvation. One Jackfruit could weigh anywhere from 10-100 lbs. and contains hundreds of seeds. The plant is rich in calcium and potassium. One jackfruit provides a lot of food, but it is not easy to prepare, so we recommend trying it in a restaurant first if you can.
No matter what you eat this year, remember that you do have healthy options. Expand your nutritional intake while surprising your dinner guests with surprisingly tasty and unique dishes!