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Organize - Look For Fresh Vegetables, Fruit And Whole Grains

In order to prepare healthy meals for yourself or for the whole family, you need to have fresh and nutritious ingredients available. This means stocking up on these ingredients in the fridge and at your pantry.
The first step to preparing healthy meals at home starts at the grocery or the market. Before leaving to shop, make sure that you have made a thorough check of your current stock and have taken note of the items that you need. It’s always more inspiring to cook when you have all items that you need on hand. Likewise, it saves you more time in shopping when you already have everything you need written down, and it prevents you from impulse buying. If you are going for healthy menus, it is better to pare down your list to only include healthy items and forego to temptation to snatch up the ice cream, sausages or frozen pizza.

It’s also wise to check out your local farmer’s market or organic market for the freshest produce. You’ll create tastier meals if your vegetables are freshly picked at the peak of their season. Not only are these vegetables also cheaper because they are usually sold by the farmers themselves, you’re also promoting the sustainability of independent farmers who produce limited amounts of these products. You’ll probably also find many organic choices in these markets which are definitely healthier because these items will be pesticide free.

Pre-plan you menus making sure to have in mind salads, soups and mains that make use of lean meats or white meats. Linger on the produce section to pick up healthy greens and other colourful vegetables. Do not skimp when it comes to veggies because their benefits on the body will far outweigh the price you paid for them. When picking out red meats, make sure to get the leanest parts with the least amount of fat on them. If possible, pick fish or lean chicken meat over red meats. Experts recommend eating at least 2 servings of fish a week. Fish—especially fatty fish—are packed with omega 3 fatty acids, an antioxidant that gives many benefits to the body.

When shopping for breads, pastas and cereals choose products that are the least processed and are made from whole grains instead of refined flour. You should also choose those that have the least amount of sugars used on them, for instance choose unfrosted over frosted cereals. Learn how to read labels, they will usually contain the nutritional information on these.

Choose fruits for dessert too. Stock up on bananas, apples, peaches and whatever fruits is in season, including berries. These could be sliced up and made into a fruit cup for a sweet, healthy dessert. Or they could be pureed with milk and crushed ice for healthy smoothies. Milk and yogurt are also good healthy alternatives to desserts, and they are also full of calcium for stronger bones.

When choosing beverages, avoid colas and artificial fruit juices that contain too much sugar. Choose fresh fruit juices or juices that are made from natural concentrates.