women's health

5 Things I'm Loving Right Now

favorite foods
 

1. Cream of the West Roasted Wheat Hot Cereal

I recently bought Cream of the West on a whim, not knowing what to expect. The front of the box just says Roasted Wheat, so I wasn't really sure what I was getting into. Maybe I'm behind on this cool, mushy, delicious, whole grain, hot cereal, idk, but I love it. I love the earthy flavor and the soft texture. It's loaded with fiber and is the perfect comfort food for any meal. I've made it sweet with berries, peanut butter, and nuts and savory with spinach, spices, and eggs. If you haven't already- it's a must try.

 

2. Harvest Snaps

Seriously love these guys. I've been eating them straight out of the bag but they'd also be good in recipes - croutons on salad or mash them up for breadcrumbs.

Although they're still chips - they're lower in sodium, saturated fat, and calories and are higher in protein and fiber than classic potato chips. They're a 'healthier' alternative. The Lightly Salted and Caesar are my faves.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

3. Unsweetened (naturally sweet) Banana Chips

I've been loving these in homemade trail mix or with a handful of almonds for an easy snack on the go. They're also perfect to satisfy my sweet tooth after lunch. Instead of going for my secret stash of chocolate, I'm perfectly satisfied with a few naturally sweet banana chips.

I've been buying them in the bulk section but you can buy them in packages too. Be sure to read the labels, they should just be dried bananas- there's no need for added oil or sugar!

 

 

 

 

4. Homemade Granola

Lately, I've been using various recipes as guides to make my own but I hope to come up with my own recipe to share with you at some point. Making granola sounds like a daunting task but is surprisingly simple. You can add whatever nuts, fruits, grains, and spices you like with just a touch of sweetness and have a whole batch in no more than 30 minutes. I've been loving it with yogurt, on top of smoothies, and by the handful.

 

5. Care/of Supplement Subscription

Although I'm by no means a supplement pusher and believe most of us can meet our nutritional needs through a balanced diet, I have to admit, this one's pretty cool. I recently came across it and had to give it a try. The company is created by doctors at Tufts and Harvard Health. You complete a quick survey and they make customized supplement recommendations. You then get a package with individually wrapped packages with your daily supplements for the month. A few of the herbs recommended for me I had never heard of, but I checked in with a few holistic practitioners I know- who gave me two thumbs up. I do trust both the science and the quality of this product and think it's a super cool idea.

 

What is 'Healthy'?

 
(This is the first pic that showed up when I typed 'healthy' into the stock photos site - I thought it was general, but fitting. Happiness can play a role in your healthy too, can't it?)

(This is the first pic that showed up when I typed 'healthy' into the stock photos site - I thought it was general, but fitting. Happiness can play a role in your healthy too, can't it?)

 

 

Everyone seems to have a different definition of 'healthy.' Which I think is great. There is no one definition and it is totally personal to your beliefs, health needs, lifestyle, and more. 

My healthy is a lot of different things. It means having the energy to do the things I love; being mindful and doing my best to listen to my hunger and fullness cues; choosing foods that make my body feel good most often; including lots of veggies; getting a good night's sleep on most nights; being active but choosing the types of activities I enjoy; being flexible around food and not having restrictions or labeling foods as 'good' or 'bad'; allowing myself to have chocolate or cookies or beer or fries if I want to.

I'm sure most people I see at my local co-op would include  'local' and 'organic' in their definition, while some of my patients at the hospital may include low saturated fat and sodium, and those with celiac may include gluten-free in their definition. I think this is great, and goes to show that there is no one perfect 'diet' or way of eating. Each person is unique and so are their health and nutrition needs.

 

 

You may or may not know that many of the food claims we read on food packages are regulated and defined by the FDA or USDA ('low-sodium', 'good source of', 'light' or 'lite', 'natural', 'organic', etc.)

In 2015, KIND bars were called out for labeling their bars as 'healthy.' Although they're made up of most poly and monounsaturated fats, the total fat content in the bars exceeded the amount allowed by the government's definition.

'Healthy' was originally defined back in the 90s when we all feared fat. Now that we know how essential fat is to our brain and body functions, and that different types of fat act differently in the body, we're taking another look at the word (20 years later!).

 

So, my question for you is...

How do you define 'healthy'? What does 'healthy' mean to you?

Is it based on certain nutrients or food groups? Does it have rules and regulations? Does it include exercise, movement, a good night's sleep? Is it your relationship with food? Let me know!

 

(btw...healthy can now be used on food labels if the fat content is primarily composed of mono and polyunsaturated fats or if the product contains at least 10% of the recommended daily value of either potassium or vitamin D)