It’s March and we’re celebrating nutrition month! Let’s get cooking by focusing on the little things you can do to improve your nutritional health that will result in big-picture gains. Read on to learn the basics to a healthy diet, as well as healthier ingredient swaps and easy sheet pan meals.
Week 1: Back to Basics
Instead of focusing on calorie-counting, restrictive diets or “superfoods”, let’s think about the foundations of a healthy diet. Eating within your caloric needs and consuming nutrient-dense foods are beneficial to your health, but focusing on the small details can be confusing, stressful and frustrating. How about nourishing your body, heart and mind instead? Renowned American author, journalist and activist Michael Pollan said it best: “Eat food. Not too much. Mostly plants.”
Check out these resources to get you back to the basics of healthy eating:
- Healthy eating basics by the Heart and Stroke Foundation
- Healthy plate and healthy bowl guidelines by Vancouver Coastal Health
- Food Rules book and Cooked documentary series (on Netflix) by Michael Pollan
Week 2: Basic Recipes
Take out the guess work and try these plant-astic, wholesome and satisfying meals:
- One-pot everyday lentil soup by Minimalist Baker
- Veggie and tofu stir fry by My Recipes
- Sweet potato and white bean chilli by Jamie Oliver
Week 3: Healthier Ingredient Swaps
One of the greatest things about home cooking is that you can make almost any dish healthier with simple substitutions. Don’t be scared to swap ingredients, modify recipes to make them healthier or use ingredients you have on hand.
- 67 healthy recipe substitutions by Greatist
- Blueberry muffin breakfast cookies by Minimalist Baker
- Lentil and sweet potato shepherd’s pie by Minimalist Baker
Week 4: Speedy Sheet Pan Meals
Sheet pan meals are great and here’s why: fewer dirty dishes, roasting produces more flavour, huge batches = leftovers (yay!), simple to prepare as most of the work is in the prep, and once it’s in the oven you can forget about it for a while.
Try these easy tips and healthy sheet pan recipes: