In my previous post, I listed a few of the things that I did not grow up eating, but was converted to throughout my years of marriage by my lovely wife who is a registered dietician. Certainly we all have in our subconscious that foods that are ‘bad’ for us typically taste good, and foods that are good for us taste terrible. [Think Popeye eating canned spinach]
However, over the years, the items I have listed and will list on this Part II are things that honestly taste good and are good for you. I grew up on Fruit Loops and Lucky Charms, not the healthiest of diets, so you can take my word for it that if I can be converted, so can you! Here’s a few more things to share:
1. Brown rice – Kind of like eating wheat bread vs white bread, it’s less moist, but has higher fiber and vitamins. Often rice accompanies meals, and isn’t the star of the show, so why not make it healthier?
A good tip to make it more palatable is to do a soak the rice in water ahead of time to make it less chewy by softened the hull. Anything to make it taste better, right? If you have kids, it would be great to start them on the brown first, so they wouldn’t have anything to compare it to. And they get used to the mouth-feel quicker. ;)
2. Chia seeds – Did you know you can eat chia seeds? It’s almost the same thing that grows on Chia pets! What happens is that when added to a liquid such as water, or juice, the seeds have an outer layer that swells up with fluid and becomes somewhat gelatinous. Not a beginner food to try, although the taste reminds me of a poppy seed and is not bad at all. It’s the texture that might take getting used to.
The kids like to add applesauce to the hydrated chia and some agave or maple syrup for some sweetness. For a fun treat, we like to hydrate them with almond milk, as well. And then add our sweetener of choice and make a pudding out of it. You can even blend it up in a blender for a smoother texture. Lots of ways to use this!
3. Flax meal – Our kids and I sprinkle this on oatmeal, in cookie batter, pancake batter, anywhere where you can hide it. Our kids actually love it, for some reason. No texture or taste issues with this one.
4. Quinoa and Farro – two grains that both sound strange but make meals more nutritious. The quinoa is softer in texture while the faro has more of a chew to it. Both taste good cooked in chicken broth.
5. Kale – I didn’t like it much at first, so she blended it into green smoothies. A typical green smoothie contains frozen mango, citrus, kale, frozen bananas and baby spinach (baby spinach has less of a metallic taste than mature spinach). If you’ve never tried, it may sound weird, but trust me, you can’t really taste the vegetables.
We'll talk more on exercise in my next post!