Product Review: UB Super

10 Apr

UBSuper-LogoLiving proof that “you are what you eat,” Scott Kanyok nursed himself back to health after suffering from a chronic upper thoracic injury in addition to being involved in a life-threatening bicycle accident. By nourishing his body with a mix of superfoods, protein, vitamins, minerals, prebiotics and probiotics, the first UB Super Protein Superfood Nutritional Shake was born and Kanyok is now thriving (source).

Given that I am a runner, I find nutritional protein shakes very beneficial after a workout. Each packet of UB Super provides at least 15g protein in addition to 10 superfoods and a complete amino acid profile, and is free from gluten, soy and GMOs (source). All you need to do to enjoy one of these tasty shakes is to place one (1.2-ounce) packet UB Super in a drinking glass or shaker bottle and add 10 ounces of water or non-dairy milk of choice.

Today I am reviewing two UB Super flavors: Chocolate and Vanilla.

UB Super Chocolate

Choosing to mix mine with unsweetened vanilla almond milk, I found the chocolate flavor and amount of sweetness to be very pleasant as if you are drinking chocolate milk. I could also taste slight earthy undertones which is a testament to all the beneficial nutrients contained within. One minor thing I wasn’t a fan of are the small flecks of solids in the smoothie. An easy and likely remedy for this though would be to put it in a high-speed blender and puree until smooth. Very tasty nonetheless!

UB Super Vanilla

I enjoyed the pleasant vanilla flavor of this product and the amount of sweetness was just right. Feeling adventurous, I decided to create a muffin recipe that utilizes UB Super Vanilla. In addition, I made it gluten-free to continue the theme. As you likely already know, baking is a science, and for me, gluten-free baking even more so. The result of my baking experiment is sweet little tasty muffins. While a little dense, these guys are not only full of beneficial superfoods, prebiotics, probiotics and various nutrients, they also have a nice touch of chocolate goodness.

UB Super Gluten-Free Chocolate Chip Vanilla Muffins and UB Super Chocolate Shake

Gluten-Free Chocolate Chip Vanilla Protein Muffins
Yields approximately 16 muffins

1-1/2 teaspoons apple cider vinegar
1-1/2 cups regular unsweetened almond milk
1 (1.2-ounce) package UB Super Vanilla protein powder
1 cup sweet white sorghum flour
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup gluten-free oat flour
1/2 cup potato starch
1-1/2 teaspoons gluten-free baking powder
1 teaspoon xantham gum
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
3/4 cup gluten-free chocolate chips

Place apple cider vinegar in a 2-cup measuring glass and add almond milk until level reaches the 1-1/2 cups mark. Stir and set aside.

Combine all dry ingredients in the bowl of a stand mixer. Add oil and almond milk mixture and stir until combined. Beat for 1-2 minutes to incorporate air into the batter.

Stir in chocolate chips by hand, just until mixed and set aside, allowing to rest.

Preheat oven to 375º F. Lightly grease a muffin pan or line with paper/silicone baking cups. Set aside.

Once oven has preheated, divide mixture evenly among muffin cups and bake for 30-35 minutes or until a toothpick when inserted near the center of a muffin comes out clean or with a few crumbs. Allow to cool slightly before consuming.

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NOTE: The products noted above were free samples provided by UB Real, which has no affiliation with Vegan Food Addict. The views and opinions expressed herein are solely that of Vegan Food Addict and do not necessarily reflect that of others.

Nearly Raw Lemon Cheesecake Bars

22 Mar

The lemon, said to be a hybrid between sour orange and citron, is an evergreen tree native to Asia. Forever prized for its sour flavor, a lemon tree’s fruit juice is approximately 5-6% citric acid, therefore making it a great source of Vitamin C (source).

When used in desserts, the flavor of lemons is brought to a whole new level. I found this delicious and easy recipe on Pinterest the other day and it inspired me to make my own version. Utilizing a mixture of cashews, macadamias and coconut oil to achieve its creamy consistency, my Nearly Raw Lemon Cheesecake Bars have just the right amount of sweet and sour notes to please your palate.

Not only does this dessert contain Vitamin C, both the almonds and cashews contained within have high amounts of Magnesium. This mineral helps prevent asthma, diabetes, osteoporosis, heart attacks, strokes, and even relieves constipation. What’s more, Magnesium alleviates the symptoms of fibromyalgia, premenstrual syndrome and migraines (source). One cheesecake square provides approximately 28% DV Magnesium*, so eat a couple, if you please, and enjoy them without the guilt!

* Sources: almonds, Deglet Noor dates, cashews, macadamias, lemon

Nearly Raw Lemon Cheesecake Bars

Nearly Raw Lemon Cheesecake Bars
Yields approximately 9 servings

Crust:
1-1/2 cups raw unsalted almonds
12 pitted Deglet Noor dates
1/2 rounded teaspoon salt
1-1/2 teaspoons water

Filling:
1/2 cup melted refined coconut oil*
1/2 cup raw agave nectar
zest and juice of 1-1/2 organic lemons (approximately 1/3 – 1/2 cup juice)
1/4 cup water
3/4 cup raw unsalted cashew pieces
1/2 cup raw unsalted macadamias**
1/8 rounded teaspoon salt

Begin with the crust by combining almonds, dates and salt in a food processor or high-speed blender. Process just a few seconds, or until almonds and dates are finely chopped. Be careful not to process too long or the result will be similar to almond butter.

Add water and process a few seconds longer until clumps start to form.

Scoop crust mixture into an 8-inch square baking dish, flattening evenly with your fingers or the back of a spoon. Set aside.

Next, place all filling ingredients in a high-speed blender and puree for 30-60 seconds, or until smooth. If using a regular blender, puree for 1-2 minutes, stopping occasionally to stir.

Scoop filling into dish and spread evenly over crust. Refrigerate for 6-8 hours, or until set. Slice into squares and serve.

* If you enjoy the aroma and flavor of coconut and want to make this recipe completely raw, you may substitute unrefined coconut oil instead of refined coconut oil.
** Raw macadamias can be a little tricky to find, not to mention expensive. Should you prefer, dry-roasted salted macadamias may be used instead. Simply follow recipe as directed but omit the salt in the filling.

Product Review: Lilly’s Hummus

3 Mar

Lilly's HummusHailing from Portland, OR, Lilly’s Hummus began when owner Lilly whipped up some hummus for a dinner party. Well-received by her guests, she began selling her hummus at a local farmer’s market and the rest is history. Now available nationwide, Lilly’s Hummus provides eight different flavors featuring hand-roasted vegetables. Flavors include Original, Black Bean, Cracked Pepper, Kalamata Olive, Roasted Garlic, Roasted Jalapeño, Roasted Red Pepper, and Smoked Tomato and Basil. If these don’t sound delicious enough to convince you, Lilly’s products are all free of animal products, gluten and GMOs.

Lilly’s Hummus generously provided four flavors for me to try: Black Bean, Cracked Pepper, Roasted Garlic and Roasted Red Pepper. It has often been my experience that many types of hummus I try have too much oil or tahini — but not Lilly’s! I could easily eat this stuff with a spoon. Not too salty with nice, mild notes, I feel that any of these hummus flavors could accompany a variety of savory dishes in perfect harmony.

Black Bean Hummus
Perhaps my favorite flavor and very popular among those whom I let try it, Lilly’s Black Bean Hummus features not only the star ingredients, black beans, but also roasted jalapeños and red peppers, in addition to smoked tomatoes which give it a nice, sweet undertone. When I eat this hummus, it reminds me of refried black beans mixed with a little salsa and lightened with a touch of sweetener. I envision this hummus pairing well with a variety of Hispanic-inspired dishes.

Cracked Pepper Hummus
Lilly’s Cracked Pepper Hummus has a nice, mellow flavor with just enough cracked pepper to taste, but not so much that it is overpowering. Cracked pepper is easy to overdo, but Lilly’s got it right. This hummus, having more of a neutral flavor could be paired with nearly any savory dish your heart desires.

Roasted Garlic Hummus
Being the big garlic fan that I am, I was excited to try Lilly’s Roasted Garlic Hummus. It has a light garlic flavor that could go perfectly with any vegetable or savory chip of your choosing. If it were up to me though, I would add just a touch more roasted garlic to kick it up a notch. This hummus is a close second in the running for my favorite Lilly’s Hummus.

Roasted Red Pepper Hummus
Perfect for you bell pepper fans out there, Lilly’s Roasted Red Pepper Hummus is her most flavorful hummus I have tried. Providing a fresh, natural red bell pepper flavor, this hummus is very pleasing and is sure to satisfy any cravings you may have. I can see it being enjoyed with a variety of Hispanic or Mediterranean dishes that would benefit from an added level of flavor.

Check out the recipe below for Mediterranean Vegetable Salad featuring Lilly’s Roasted Red Pepper Hummus. Accompanied by fresh basil, this salad  is full of flavor. Enjoy!

Mediterranean Salad with Roasted Red Pepper Hummus

Mediterranean Vegetable Salad with Roasted Red Pepper Hummus

6 cups water
1 bulb fresh fennel, white part only, washed and chopped
2 large portobello mushrooms, cleaned and cubed
2 small zucchini, washed and cubed
1/2 cup pitted kalamata olives, drained and minced
1 cup artichoke hearts, drained and chopped (optional)
1/2 cup Lilly’s Roasted Red Pepper Hummus*
2 tablespoons minced fresh basil

Place water in a 4-quart pot and bring to a boil over high heat. Add fennel, mushrooms and zucchini and boil for 1-3 minutes, or until crisp-tender. Drain and rinse with cold water to halt cooking process. Set aside, allowing to cool completely.

Place remaining ingredients in a large bowl. Add cooled vegetables and stir to combine.

* Lilly’s has multiple flavors of hummus that are delicious in this recipe. If you’re not feeling roasted red bell peppers, try Lilly’s Cracked Pepper or Roasted Garlic Hummus.

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NOTE: The products noted above were free samples provided by Lilly’s Hummus, which has no affiliation with Vegan Food Addict. The views and opinions expressed herein are solely that of Vegan Food Addict and do not necessarily reflect that of others.

Product Review: Ariven Imperial Rice

24 Feb

Ariven PlanetHaving been concerned for animal welfare from an early age, Adiphen Bose also noticed the connection between the large amounts of unused land and the staggering amount of people whom were starving in Southern India. These realizations gave Bose a vision, and from it, Ariven Planet was born. Ariven Planet benefits both human and non-human animals by creating sustainable animal sanctuaries that provide quality food for people, with a portion of harvests being used to feed the hungry.

Operating on three main business principles, the folks at Ariven Planet focus on 1) “A purpose beyond profit” 2) “A belief that businesses should do no harm, yet benefit all” and 3) “A dedication to health-minded sustainability.” Without the use of GMOs, chemicals and pesticides, in addition to the use of recyclable and biodegradable packaging, Ariven Planet lives up to its promise (source).

Ariven Planet currently sells coffee, tea, and rice, and is proud to be the first to bring the Royal Heirloom Rice of India to the United States. Needless to say, I am glad they did! Their Ariven Imperial Rice is like no rice I have ever had before. Having followed the preparation directions exactly, the result was perfectly cooked, plump rice. Though there was a little excess water in the bottom of the pan, it was easily drained and ensured that the rice was moist. The resulting light, fluffy grains impart a nice, slightly sweet yet mild flavor and are a rich source of B vitamins. These precious little pillows could surely be used in both sweet and savory dishes and are excellent for soaking up a variety of saucy toppings. I highly recommend Ariven Imperial Rice and am happy to offer a 15% off coupon code BETHECHANGE108 towards their online store.

For your eating pleasure, below is a recipe for Mushroom Mutter Masala to eat atop this rice. Enjoy!

Mushroom Mutter Masala

Mushroom Mutter Masala

2 cups Ariven Imperial Rice, prepared
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 (16-ounce) package sliced white button mushrooms
1 tablespoon garam masala powder
1 (1-inch) piece fresh ginger, peeled and grated
1 large clove garlic, peeled and minced
1 teaspoon salt
1-1/2 cups frozen peas, thawed
1 (13.5-ounce) can coconut milk
2 (8-ounce) cans tomato paste*
1 cup vegetable broth

Heat oil in a 4-quart pot over medium heat. Add mushrooms and cook for 5 minutes, or until tender.

Add garam masala, ginger, garlic and salt to the pot, cooking and stirring for an additional minute.

Place remaining ingredients in the pot and continue to cook and stir until combined and heated through.

Serve over prepared rice.

* Should you prefer less tomato paste, simply use 1 (8-ounce) can tomato paste and decrease your vegetable broth amount to 1/2 cup.

Ariven Imperial Rice

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NOTE: The product noted above was a free sample provided by Ariven Planet, which has no affiliation with Vegan Food Addict. The views and opinions expressed herein are solely that of Vegan Food Addict and do not necessarily reflect that of others.

Wonton Vegetable Soup

14 Feb

A wonton is a type of dumpling commonly found in Chinese cuisine. Typically fried or boiled in soup, wontons are prepared by placing filling inside of thin, flat pieces of dough, which are folded over and sealed. The shape of wontons vary by region, but are often found as triangles.

Bok choy (also known as pak-choi), a type of Chinese cabbage, is a low-calorie food providing a healthy dose of nutrients. 1 cup boiled bok choy provides 18% DV Potassium, 144% Vitamin A, 15% Calcium, 73% Vitamin C and 15% Vitamin B6, all in just 20 calories (source).

The high amount of Vitamin A contained in bok choy plays an essential role in healthy vision, bone growth, and immune and reproduction system function. This vitamin, often referred to as retinoids, is found naturally in both animal and plant sources, however, animal-derived Vitamin A is fat-soluble and can build up in the body, becoming toxic. Plant-derived Vitamin A, however, is water-soluble and does not build up in the body, therefore toxicity is rare (source).

The wontons below encompass a savory tofu filling and are cooked in a light vegetable broth, which is full of bok choy, carrots, baby corn, mushrooms and green onion.

Vegetable Wonton Soup

Wonton Vegetable Soup

Wontons:
8 ounces extra-firm tofu, drained, patted dry and crumbled
1 large clove garlic, peeled
1 tablespoon soy sauce
fresh cracked black pepper
1/3 (12-ounce) package round dumpling wrappers*

Soup:
12 cups water
3 tablespoons vegan vegetable bouillon paste (I use Better Than Bouillon)
1 teaspoon grated fresh ginger
2 medium-size carrots, peeled and thinly sliced
2 heads bok choy, washed and sliced
1-1/2 cups sliced mushrooms of choice, cleaned
8 ounces baby corn, drained
2 green onions, thinly sliced

Begin with wontons by placing tofu, garlic, soy sauce and pepper in a bowl. Mix with a fork until thoroughly combined.

Place a dumpling wrapper on a clean, flat surface and spoon approximately 1 tablespoon tofu mixture into the center. Moisten edges of wrapper with water and fold to form a half-moon. Seal wonton by carefully pressing around filling and edges to remove as much air as possible. Continue process until filling is used up. Set aside.

For the soup, bring water to a boil and stir in vegetable bouillon paste until dissolved. Add ginger, carrots, bok choy and mushrooms, reduce heat to low and cover, allowing to simmer for 2-3 minutes.

Add prepared wontons to pot and replace lid, continuing to simmer for an additional 2-3 minutes.

Finally, add baby corn and green onions, replace lid and simmer for 1-2 additional minutes, or until wontons and vegetables are tender. Serve hot or warm.

* Dumpling and wonton wrappers often contain egg, so it is important to read the ingredients, ensuring that the wrappers are vegan.

White Bean and Sage Crostini

4 Feb

Crostini, sometimes called crostino, which means “little toast” in Italian, is a small slice of grilled or toasted bread capped with a flavorful topping (source).

This recipe, featuring beans and fresh sage, provides a variety of nutrients. 1 cup canned white beans provides 50% DV Dietary Fiber, 19% Calcium, 44% Iron, and 19g Protein (source). An excellent source of Manganese, white beans assist with healthy bones, metabolism, sex hormones and thyroid gland function, regulation of blood sugar, prevention of epileptic seizures, as well as assisting with calcium absorption (source).

These refreshing White Bean and Sage Crostini are excellent hors d’oeuvres or can be used as a fancy potluck contribution.

White Bean and Sage Crostini

White Bean and Sage Crostini

Crostini:
1 (8-ounce) baguette, cut into 1/2-inch slices
olive oil
salt
fresh cracked pepper

Topping:
1 (15-ounce) can cannellini or great northern beans
1 large clove garlic, minced
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoon finely minced fresh sage
1/4 teaspoon salt
fresh cracked black pepper

Preheat oven to 350° F.

Begin with the crostini by placing baguette slices in a single layer on a large cookie sheet. Brush both sides of bread with oil and lightly sprinkle with salt and pepper. Bake in preheated oven for 10-15 minutes, or until light golden brown. Remove from oven and set aside.

Meanwhile, for the topping, drain beans and rinse with water, allowing to drain thoroughly. Mash beans in a small bowl and add remaining ingredients, mixing until combined.

Spoon bean mixture evenly atop baguette slices and serve.

Good Morning Pineapple Smoothie

18 Jan

Nothing says “good morning” like a fresh smoothie to kick-start your day. Many of us are not big breakfast people, so why not enjoy a drink rather than trying to prepare and consume an entire meal? This will help you get the nutrients needed to get going in the morning, in addition to filling you up.

One of the best nutrients to consume in the morning is protein. One serving of this healthy and satisfying morning smoothie provides over 18 grams protein, which is about 1/3 of the recommended daily value (source). Also featured in this smoothie is a healthy amount of fiber and potassium. Enjoy!

Good Morning Pineapple Smoothie
Yields 1-2 servings

1 cup unsweetened non-dairy milk
1/4 fresh pineapple, skinned and cored, and cut into chunks
1 banana, peeled
1/2 cup quick-cooking or rolled oats
2-3 tablespoons unsweetened protein powder (i.e. pea protein)

Place ingredients in a blender and puree until smooth, approximately 1-2 minutes.

Cinnamon Banana Muffins with Candied Pistachios

30 Dec

Pistachios are becoming an increasingly popular snack. Not only are they delicious, they provide many vitamins and minerals. One cup dry-roasted pistachios provides approximately 35% DV Potassium, 48% Dietary Fiber, 52% Protein, 13% Calcium, 27% Iron, 70% Vitamin B6 and 33% Magnesium (source).

A member of the cashew family, the pistachio, or Pistacia vera, is grown in various countries around the world and is said to have been first cultivated in Western Asia. Consumed as far back as 6750 BC, the pistachio is a desert plant that can thrive in a wide range of temperatures, though it does not respond well in humid climates or those which provide too much water. Each tree produces approximately 50,000 nuts every two years (source).

Try these green-colored beauties atop some Cinnamon Banana Muffins. If you prefer, pistachios can be replaced with the nut of your choice.

Cinnamon Banana Muffins with Candied Pistachios

Cinnamon-Banana Muffins with Candied Pistachios
Yields 12 muffins

Topping:
3/4 cup roasted and shelled pistachios (or different nut of choice)
1 tablespoon granulated sugar
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
2 tablespoons pure maple syrup

Muffins:
4 teaspoons flax meal
8 teaspoons warm water
1/3 cup solid vegetable shortening
2/3 cup granulated sugar
2 ripe mashed bananas
1/4 cup regular almond milk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1-1/3 cups all-purpose or whole wheat flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt

Preheat oven to 350º F. Lightly grease a muffin pan or line with paper/silicone baking cups; set aside.

For the topping, combine the pistachios, sugar and cinnamon in a small bowl. Add maple syrup and stir until pistachios are evenly coated; set aside.

For the muffins, combine flax meal and warm water in a small bowl, mix, and set aside, allowing to thicken.

Next, in a medium bowl, combine flour, baking powder, cinnamon, baking soda and salt, and set aside.

In a large mixing bowl, cream together shortening and sugar. Add the bananas, almond milk and flax mixture, and mix until combined. Slowly add dry mixture to wet mixture and stir just until combined. Spoon batter evenly into prepared muffin pan, topping with pistachio mixture.

Bake in preheated oven for 30-35 minutes or until a toothpick inserted near the center of a muffin comes out clean.

Product Review: The Vegg

9 Dec

The Vegg LogoDeveloped by Rocky Shepheard, The Vegg is a 100% plant-based egg alternative free of cholesterol, gluten, soy, fat and GMOs. The Vegg is also kosher and high in Vitamins A and B12. Based out of Pennsylvania, the company donates 10% of net proceeds each year to animal protection organizations.

Available in a 4.5-ounce container, The Vegg is a yellow powder with a very faint egg-like smell. To prepare one Vegg yolk, blend 1/2 teaspoon of The Vegg powder and 1/8 cup (or 2 tablespoons) water for 30 seconds. The result is a thick, yellow liquid that looks and smells eerily similar to an actual egg yolk. How does it achieve this aroma? Part of the answer is black salt, known for its egg-like smell and taste (click here for more information).

Now the question is, does it taste like egg yolks? If eaten right away, yes. For some reason, the egg-like properties of black salt dissipate after a few minutes, so working with it quickly is key. Regardless, The Vegg has a pleasant flavor that compliments a large variety of baked and cooked goods. Having tried a variety of recipes with The Vegg, I’ve yet to find a single one that I haven’t liked. My favorite, so far, is french toast. The result was a hit with everyone it was served it to, even a self-proclaimed omnivore, who went back for seconds!

Not only used in breakfast foods, The Vegg proves its versatility in this recipe for Cream of Asparagus Soup.

Cream of Asparagus Soup

Cream of Asparagus Soup
Yields approximately 5 cups

1 bunch fresh green asparagus
1 tablespoon olive oil
1/2 cup white onion, chopped
2 large cloves garlic, minced
2 cups vegetable broth
1 teaspoon Vegg powder
1 pint regular non-dairy creamer
3/4 teaspoon salt, or to taste
fresh cracked black pepper

Wash and dry asparagus. Cut off approximately 1-inch of bottoms and discard. Cut remainder of asparagus spears into 1-inch pieces and set aside.

Heat olive oil in a large pot over medium heat and add onion, cooking and stirring for a couple of minutes, or until translucent.

Add asparagus and garlic to the pot and continue to cook and stir for an additional minute.

Add vegetable broth to the pot and bring to a boil over high heat. Cover, reduce heat to low and simmer for 10 minutes, or until asparagus is tender. Remove from heat.

Place Vegg powder in a blender and add asparagus mixture (using 1/2 of mixture if necessary). Blend for 30-60 seconds, or until smooth.

Poor asparagus mixture back into pot, place over low heat, and add creamer, stirring until combined and heated through. Add salt and pepper to taste.

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NOTE: The product noted above was a discounted sample provided by The Vegg. Vegan Food Addict is in no way affiliated with The Vegg, and the views and opinions expressed herein are strictly that of Vegan Food Addict’s.

5 Tips for Eating Healthier

1 Dec

The colder months bring with them the holidays, which just so happen to revolve around a plethora of food. Having enjoyed my Thanksgiving feast just a few days ago, I feel that eating healthy for a while is in order.

One in three American children is overweight or obese, which is nearly triple the rate seen in 1963 (source). As for adults, over 35% are obese according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. With obesity comes a gamut of health issues including type 2 diabetes, heart disease and strokes, in addition to certain types of cancer (source). In the past, these weight-related issues were seen only in adults. Now, however, it is becoming common to see them in children; a huge red flag signalling that we need to do something about this.

The good news is that much of the obesity epidemic can be fought with a lifestyle change, and this means eating healthier. Food is the fuel of life, and what we choose to eat plays a significant role in our health.

While I don’t always post the healthiest of recipes here on Vegan Food Addict, I try to make it a habit of following the tips below in my personal life.

Fresh Sage, Rosemary and Salt

1. Cut the salt
Keep that blood pressure in check by watching your sodium intake. Too much sodium not only results in high blood pressure, it also contributes to kidney disease. Sodium is a vital nutrient, however, those age 50 and younger need less than 2,300mg per day, and those 51 and older need even less, approximately 1,500mg per day (source). When cooking, use a light hand when adding salt or soy sauce, and use products that are low sodium (i.e. soups and vegetable broth). Some of the worst high-sodium offenders are cheese, meat, prepared and processed foods. Add more flavor without salt by using fresh herbs, garlic, onion, citrus juice or white vinegar.

2. Choose unprocessed foods with fewer ingredients
Many of us have already made it a habit of reading nutrition labels. Whether it be to avoid products with specific ingredients, or to buy something with a particular vitamin or nutrient, we need to be aware of what, exactly, we are putting into our bodies. As a general rule, it is best to buy those products which are unprocessed and have the fewest ingredients; ingredients you can pronounce! That way, you should know exactly what you are eating.

3. Substitute wheat for white
Ditch those white products for wheat. Instead of all-purpose flour use whole wheat flour, and rather than white rice use brown rice. All-purpose flour and white rice are typically bleached and stripped of their nutrients, and as a result, really don’t offer much natural nutritional value. When compared to all-purpose flour, whole wheat flour provides more Potassium and Protein, in addition to more Vitamin B6 and Magnesium (source). When compared to white rice, brown rice provides more Dietary Fiber, Vitamin B6 and Magnesium (source). Should you dislike the hearty taste and texture of whole wheat products, try using white whole wheat flour as it has both a lighter flavor and texture, and serves as an excellent stand-in for all-purpose and regular whole wheat flours. When making baked goods with whole wheat flour, the use of additional liquid may be necessary.

4. Sweeten naturally
Rather than using refined sugar and other chemical-laden sweeteners, try fruits such as apricots, bananas or dates. Not only are they excellent sweeteners, they also offer additional nutritional value including Vitamins A, C (source), Potassium (source), Magnesium and B6 (source). There are many fruits you can use — experiment and see what you like best!

5. Bake, don’t fry
Reduce your oil consumption. This includes oil of any type, in addition to butter and margarine. Nearly 100% fat, oil should only be consumed in small amounts. In fact, just one tablespoon olive oil provides about one-quarter of your daily recommended amount of fat (source). Rather than frying, prepare your food as you normally would, however, lightly coat with the oil of your choice and bake until crispy. If you prefer to cook without any added oil, wrap in foil and bake in the oven until cooked to your satisfaction.

Have additional tips? Comment below and let us know about them!

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