"Health is a large word. It embraces not the body only, but the mind and spirit as well;...
and not today's pain or pleasure alone, but the whole being and outlook of a man."
~James H. West

Lisa's Blog

Healthy Shopping List: 5 Tips

Lisa Cutforth - Tuesday, May 03, 2011

Healthy Shopping List: 

"Healthy eating begins in the kitchen, whether it's in a home, restaurant, dining hall, or other venue. To get the most out of the recipes you prepare, keep your kitchen stocked with ingredients from the Healthy Eating Pyramid." (Harvard Nutrition Source, May 2011)

I am often asked by my clients for tips on healthy shopping and what to stock up on.  If you get the basics right you can make healthy eating really easy.  I have a basic shopping list which I can send through to you if you request it (just fill out a form on the Contact-Us page); however I thought I would share the following 5 tips with you as they are nice and simple and landed in my inbox this morning!

5 Tips for stocking a healthy kitchen  

The Harvard Nutrition Source recommended the following 5 easy to implement tips:

"1. Produce. Choose locally grown vegetables and fruits whenever you can. Keep on hand garlic, onions, dark salad greens like spinach and romaine, carrots, and apples. When you shop, select produce that looks good, or what's on sale."

My note: When you choose locally grown vegetable and fruit, it is usually fresher, because it doesn't have as far to travel it is usually picked later and undergoes less storage and less handling.  Therefore it is often cheaper too. The fresher the fruit and vegetables the more enzymes and nutrients present!

"2. Grains. Trade in white rice for the bounty of great whole grains: barley, cracked wheat (bulgur), oat berries, quinoa, brown rice, and a host of others. Try whole wheat pasta or one of the whole wheat blends now on the market."

My note: Whole grains provide fibre for a healthy digestive tract and are also lower in glycaemic load so will help you to manage your blood sugar, your energy levels and your weight!

"3. Protein. Rely on healthy protein such as fresh fish, chicken or turkey, tofu, eggs, and a variety of beans and nuts. And move away from the traditional mealtime paradigm of a large portion of meat at the center of your plate. Instead, build a healthy plate: half the plate vegetables and fruits, one quarter of the plate with healthy proteins, and one quarter of the plate with whole grains."

My note: Beans and lentils and pulses and nuts and seeds are a much more affordable and often more versatile way of getting extra protein into your diet.  Vegetable proteins are also kinder on your heart and digestive tract that many animal proteins.  If you do eat meat or animal protein, limit the portion to the size of a deck of cards or the palm of your hand and try to follow the guidelines above for the "healthy plate".

"4. Fats and oils. Use liquid vegetable oils whenever possible for sautéing vegetables, stir-frying fish or chicken, and as the base of salad dressings. Good choices include canola, sunflower, corn, soybean, peanut, and olive oil. A dash of a specialty oil, like extra-virgin olive oil, walnut or pistachio oil, sesame oil, or truffle oil, can make steamed vegetables come alive. Mashed avocado, rich in heart-healthy monounsaturated fats, makes a fabulous topping for sandwiches."

My note: Here I would probably recommend that you cook with oils like coconut oil, as other oils will be destroyed or denatured much quicker through cooking. Use other plant or vegetable oils raw drizzled over your food or as salad dressings.

"5. Other essentials. Learn what chefs have known for a long time: A small amount of a high-quality ingredient goes a long way toward boosting flavor. Stock your kitchen with good-quality tomato sauce, balsamic vinegar, fresh and dried herbs, dried cherries or cranberries, freshly grated Parmesan cheese, and a variety of unsalted nuts (such as walnuts, almonds, and pistachios)."

My note:  I always have fresh ginger, garlic and lemon on hand and good quality vegetable stock.  Low salt and wheat free soya sauces like tamari can also add flavour to steamed vegetables or stir fries.

Ref: 5 Tips for Stocking a Healthy Kitchen:  The Nutrition Source at Harvard School of Public Health e- newsletter, May 2011. 

I would recommend signing up for their newsletter as some great articles come through. This was an example of one I received this week (May 2011) with some great healthy shopping tips.  They tend to provide great little recipes and extra resources to accompany their literature.

Recent Posts


dancing quick eating solutions how to love exercise are frozen veggies any good memory how to get more of exercise what is healthy food healthy cooking parties happiness course herbal toothpaste organic vegetables new year's resolutions love food Happiness ability to respond Nina Simone performance ask my doctor low calorie meal plan calorie controlled diet soft drink and behavior problems benefits of strength training, why you should strength train keep focused comfort foods food allergies benefits to keeping a diet diary homocysteine natural toothpaste breast cancer awareness low cholesterol cholesterol lowering diet fun breast cancer awareness video hot guys skipping meals wrong type of exercise, exercise and results Dr Randy Pausch on Oprah alzheimers control indigestion how to be happy immune system 10 % principle mood blood pressure to know and not do is not yet to know fatigue healthy shopping list quick recipes dance healthy cooking demonstration breakfast Alan Pease soccer, role of team sports in longevity, role of exercise and community in longevity weight loss which is better for you butter or margarine great second hand books what is movember music sugar and adhd cooking with allergies sensitivity to milk maintain a healthy weight, underweight should I eat organic veggies how to avoid injury during exercise Laughter and stress comfort pig simple 7 day detox plan the tummy beast have more energy life choices make stress work for you sexy salads cheap fruit and vegetables, what's in season in autumn in australia is sugar bad how to check your breasts health one step at a time life health for busy people taking responsibility Lactose intolerance christmas health with 10 % effort obesity allergies breast cancer prevention avoiding a choice life lessons relax delicious low calorie diet reducing coffee Lisa's Diary nutritious cooking high cholesterol energy comfort eating fun Egg allergy hunger and stress empty your mind diet diary of a nutritionist fruit increasing energy nutritionist in brisbane have fun in the kitchen gluten intolerance recipies sustainable living, rural development, organic gardening, rampumps, biogas anxiety improve your memory muscle wasting what is a good breakfast ways to improve prostate health benefits of sleeping assertiveness foods in season, seasonal recipes healthy cooking party leaky gut, gut health, symptoms of leaky gut love, loneliness celebrate life nutrition trans fats healthy wine, healthy beer, healthy alcohol options nutritionists diet diary weightloss happiness workshop nutritionist soft drink and behaviour problems how to avoid doing the right thing and getting the wrong results support your body do i have to drink milk; where do i get calcium from; non dairy calcium sources motivation taking a break nutritious heart foundation tick explained Sensational is chocolate bad for me sugar and add Cancer heart disease four questions you must ask your doctor before taking medication strength making time to relax immune boosting tips reasons to eat foods in season muffins health brain health I've Got Life go for 2 and 5 childrens lunch boxes getting fit diet diary seasonal quick and tasty recipes I don't get hungry relationship with food fruit and vegetable shortage recipe cooking class in brisbane time management and healthy living recipes for allergies 7 Tips to Lower Your Cholesterol and Protect Your Heart libido focus 7 steps to detox lunch detox dangers of multitasking while you eat how to say no fussy eaters real food fresh Add new tag are grains healthy drugfree alternatives addicted to chocolate weight skip meals quizz overindulge feels good the power to choose food sensitivities mobile phones and brain cancer, Dr Teo stress, keys to managing stress, benefits of stress food intolerances salad corporate wellness best exercise gift healthy shopping Nutritional Therapist natural alternatives to drugs success and you sexy salad health pioneers pop-eye and spinach fresh start prostate cancer healthy fast food, healthy take away image