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Create a Healthy Kitchen for Diet Success

create a healthy kitchen

Want to create a healthy kitchen for diet success?

Whether you want to eat better or lose weight, we have healthy kitchen tips for setting up your diet for success. If you’re like most people, you don’t have much time to spend in the kitchen daily, which is why creating a healthy kitchen is essential. We’ll make it easy to include healthy foods and cover time-saving kitchen tips to make your daily diet more enjoyable.

Create a Healthy Kitchen

First, let’s start with your kitchen. Eating well is hard if you don’t have healthy food available.

1. Purge Your Pantry

What’s one of the easiest ways to eat healthier and lose weight? Get rid of unhealthy temptations! Create a healthy kitchen by purging your pantry. Begin by removing all food items from your pantry and cupboards — clear counter space to go through each item. First, check expiration dates, discard expired items, and decide which items to donate. Keep in mind that getting rid of unhealthy stuff makes it much easier to eat well.

Read Food Labels

To determine which items stay or go, read labels and ditch:

  • Ingredients that look like a chemistry experiment
  • The 10 toxic ingredients to avoid (below)
  • GMOs
  • Artificial coloring
  • Artificial and refined sweeteners
  • Greater than 10 ingredients
  • More than 10 grams of sugar per serving
  • Manmade fats
  • Wheat and gluten

Clean shelves and organize items to prevent waste and save time. Labels can also keep the new system in place. Create zones in your pantry so things are easy to find. Add a snack zone for kids, a cheat meal zone for weekends, and a seasoning zone for herbs and spices. After the pantry, repeat this healthy kitchen clean-out with your fridge and freezer.

2. Stock Your Kitchen

Another healthy kitchen tip is to grocery shop like a nutritionist to stock your space so you always have something nutritious on hand. Choose whole foods over processed ones and select healthy alternatives when available. Opt for the highest quality foods you can afford.

No matter what diet you follow, below are dietary staples to stock your healthy kitchen.

Healthier Pantry

  • Fresh fruit: bananas, apples, oranges, lemons, limes, etc.
  • Proteins: canned salmon or sardines
  • Oils: avocado, coconut, olive, macadamia nut
  • Fats: avocado, coconut butter/milk/cream
  • Gluten-free: cookies, crackers, pasta, wraps, granola, trail mix
  • Sweeteners: cinnamon, raw honey, maple syrup, dried fruit 
  • Baking: chocolate, cacao powder/butter/nibs, flour (coconut, cassava, almond, or oat)
  • Other: tea, sea salt, dried herbs or spices, seaweed, vanilla

Healthier Fridge

  • Staples: dressings, condiments, Kalamata olives, coconut aminos
  • Fruits: apples, tangerines, dates, figs
  • Veggies: carrots, cabbage, kale, salad mix, cauliflower, etc.
  • Cultured: kombucha, kvass, kraut
  • Other: gluten-free bread, nut or seed butter, salsa, guacamole

Healthier Freezer

  • Fruits: berries, cherries, mango, açaí, dragonfruit, bananas, etc.
  • Veggies: spinach, broccoli, asparagus, kale, etc.
  • Nuts and seeds: chia seeds, flax seeds, walnuts, almonds, etc.
  • Protein: wild salmon, chicken sausage, black bean burgers, etc.

3. Make Healthy Eating Easy

Now that you’ve tossed the bad stuff and stocked up on the good, you’ll want to make these upgrades delicious and doable. A healthy kitchen will help you eat better, save time, and prepare delicious meals that the whole family can enjoy. 

Come up with a few no-excuse meals you can make in minutes…

  • Black bean salad with sweet potatoes, tomatoes, guacamole, and salsa
  • Banza chickpea pasta with tomato sauce, spinach, and mushrooms
  • Frozen shrimp stir-fry with frozen veggies and coconut aminos
  • Rotisserie chicken served in a Paleo wrap with vegan Ranch
  • Apple sandwich with almond butter and sliced bananas

Want more homemade meals in minimal time? Check out Real Plans Meal Plans, an affordable online meal planning tool that creates nutritious weekly meal plans. You can customize your plan to follow a particular diet, adjust servings, and fit your schedule. The app provides simple recipes to follow and a grocery list.

4. Reduce Toxic Ingredients

Toxins are abundant nowadays, and they negatively impact your health and weight loss efforts. Reduce toxins in your kitchen with the following tips:

  • Opt for organic foods whenever available
  • Avoid plastic as much as possible
  • Use glass or silicone for food storage containers and jars
  • Select natural hand soap, dish soap, dish detergent, and cleaners
  • Swap non-stick cookware for glass, ceramic, stainless steel, or cast iron
  • Cook with an Instant Pot for a quick, non-toxic solution
  • Filter water with a Reverse Osmosis system or a Berkey
  • Avoid the microwave and use safer heating methods such as sautéing or baking

Ditch Toxic Ingredients

While you create a healthy kitchen, read labels and avoid the harmful toxic ingredients below. Unfortunately, these toxins are found in many processed products and contribute to health problems like weight gain, hormone imbalances, behavioral issues, and cancer.

10 Toxic Ingredients to Avoid

1. Wheat & Gluten

Most people LOVE wheat and foods containing gluten. Wheat is a staple in many diets around the world. Unfortunately, wheat is not the beneficial food it used to be. Modern wheat is sprayed heavily with Roundup, an herbicide that contains the active ingredient glyphosate. This cancer-causing chemical contributes to countless health issues. Modern wheat is less nutritious, inflammatory, and linked to digestive problems.

Label says: wheat, gluten, flour, rye, barley, bread, etc.

Healthy kitchen: Paleo bread, Paleo Wraps, etc.

Want to see BIG improvements in your health and experience rapid weight loss? Go gluten-free!

2. Corn

Corn is the second most common GMO and hides in many processed products.

Label says: corn, corn oil, starch, HFCS, dextrose, maltodextrin, etc.

Healthy kitchen: Fresh organic corn is ok, but it’s still a grain and shouldn’t be a replacement for vegetables. Swap tortillas for Primal Wraps and replace cornstarch with arrowroot powder.

3. Soy

Soy is a GMO crop that contributes to excess estrogen, infertility, thyroid issues, mineral deficiencies, and more.

Label says: soy(a), soybeans, edamame, soybean oil, tofu, soy milk/flour/sauce/protein/curd/sprouts, tamari, teriyaki sauce, textured/hydrolyzed protein. Possible sources: MSG, glycerides, bulking agent, gum arabic, guar gum, lecithin, tocopherols, natural flavoring, stabilizer, thickener, vegetable gum/starch/shortening/oil, vitamin E.

Healthy kitchen: fermented soy such as tamari, natto, and miso.

Toxic Sweeteners…

4. Artificial Sweeteners

Although calorie-free, artificial sweeteners promote weight gain. They can also cause digestive issues, headaches, seizures, depression, joint pain, sleep problems, diabetes, and more.

Label says: “sugar-free,” including aspartame (NutraSweet, Equal), sucralose (Splenda), saccharin (Sweet’N Low), etc.

Healthy kitchen: 100% pure stevia

5. Refined Sugars

Excess sugar causes metabolic problems and contributes to inflammation, obesity, heart disease, blood sugar issues, diabetes, and cancer. Sugar is present in many sweet foods, including cookies, candy, and other sweets. It’s also hidden in other foods like salad dressings, tomato sauce, condiments, canned foods, and crackers.

Label says: fructose and other words ending in “-ose.”, etc. 

Healthy kitchen: cinnamon, fruit, raw honey, maple syrup, coconut sugar

6. High Fructose Corn Syrup

HFCS is linked to weight gain, overeating, obesity, diabetes, and numerous diseases. It’s made from GMOs, not metabolized well by the body, and contains heavy metal mercury.

Healthy kitchen: see Refined Sugar alternatives (above)

Harmful Additives…

7. Artificial Coloring

Avoid artificial food coloring and dyes as they’re linked to birth defects, hyperactivity, hypersensitivity, behavioral issues, cancer, and more.

Label says: blue, green, red #40, yellow #5, etc.

Healthy kitchen: Use natural coloring, such as beets for pink.

8. Monosodium Glutamate (MSG)

This flavor enhancer is a toxic additive. MSG contributes to various health issues like obesity, diabetes, digestive issues, neurological and brain damage, and fatty liver.

Label says: hydrolyzed/textured vegetable protein, yeast extract, gelatin, malted barley, rice syrup, or soy sauce. Many restaurants use MSG.

Healthy kitchen: Tamari, coconut aminos, tomatoes, or mushrooms.

Unhealthy Fats…

9. Canola

Made from rapeseed, most canola is a GMO. Like most vegetable oils, canola is highly processed. It’s often refined, bleached, and deodorized, which adds toxins and removes nutrients, including the omega-3s. The manufacturing process makes it partially hydrogenated.

Label says: canola, vegetable oil.

Healthy kitchen: choose high-quality avocado, olive, or coconut oil.

10. Trans Fats

These artificial fats contribute to weight gain, obesity, cancer, diabetes, weakened immunity, reproductive issues, heart disease, and more.

Label says: vegetable/canola/corn/soy/cottonseed oil, margarine, or butter spread. Avoid terms like hydrogenated or fractionated.

Healthy kitchen: see Canola (above)