If you think healthy eating means branches, twigs and other unappetizing fare, think again. Some foods are naturally healthy and naturally delicious. Here are five of them.
Vanilla Greek Yogurt
If you’re watching your sugar, I’ll admit this one may not be for you (then again, you may be surprised exactly how much sugar is in all yogurt, even the plain kind). That said, this is a protein-and-probiotic-packed dream. I usually have some with berries and nuts for breakfast, but you can use it to make dessert, too, putting warm cooked apple or banana over it. Serious yum.
Yes, avocados have lots of fat, but it’s the good kind. They’re also packed with vitamins and fiber, and even have some protein. And oh, yeah, they’re delicious. Mashed, you can use avocado instead of mayo, and add some lemon or lime juice for a zing. Or use half or a quarter of one in a smoothie.
Nuts are another stealthy healthy food, and can help your heart by lowering the level of LDL, or bad, cholesterol in your blood. They’re an easy source of protein, and they naturally contain Omega-3 fatty acids and plant sterols, both thought to improve heart and vascular health. And have you tasted them? Since you can have too much of a good thing, if you have trouble limiting your intake, try portion-controlled snack packs.
OK, so I admit that kale can be a bit of an acquired taste. Personally, I prefer the baby kale, or a blend with spinach and Swiss chard. The mix is incredibly versatile, and also ups your intake of vitamins A and C, folate and potassium. You can use it as the base for a salad, put it in a green smoothie (just add half an avocado, half an apple and some juice or water), substitute it for lettuce or cook it.
If, like me, you’re not much of a fan of regular milk, almond milk may be the substitution you’re looking for. Even the sweetened almond milk – it does come in unsweetened versions – has about 60 calories a cup, which is less than skim milk’s 83. It tastes great, and comes in flavors, though those up the calorie count considerably. It’s fantastic in smoothies, in cereal, and you can even use it instead of milk while cooking and baking.