Make sure you have a healthy pantry

Your resolution for 2019 is to improve your diet. The first step to achieving this goal is to inventory your kitchen pantry. For better health, swap out unhealthy convenience foods in your kitchen pantry.

Olive and canola oils

Both can provide heart-healthy monounsaturated fats, according to Karen Ansel, RD (American Dietetic Association) spokesperson.


Jackie Newgent, RD, author Big Green Cookbook, states that vinegars with similar colors can brighten or balance the flavor of vegetables, as well as mixed savory dishes, such as balsamic with dark veggies and cider with chicken and rice.

Dried herbs and spices

Paprika and cumin are great spices that add flavor to dishes without adding fat. Blends should be labeled as “low-sodium”

Dijon mustard

It’s a delicious sandwich spread that can also be used in a vinaigrette made with olive oil and balsamic vinegar.

Onions and potatoes

These recipes are great for long-term storage.

Low-sodium vegetable and chicken broth

The broth is a key ingredient in quick, flavorful meal preparation. It can be used in soups, stews, braises, and pasta dishes.

Canned tuna

Light tuna is a good choice, as it’s low in mercury but high in omega-3s.

Canned tomatoes

You can open a can to make sauce. Jessica Fishman Levinson RD is the founder of Nutritioulicious. She is a nutrition counseling firm in New York City. You should aim for 200 mgs of sodium or less per serving.


Sauce in a jar is fine. Choose one with tomatoes as the first ingredient and less than 3.5g of fat per serving.

Pasta with whole grains and regular

Whole-grain is healthier but regular whole grain is fine in moderation, according to Marissa Lippert RD. It should be cooked al dente, or a little firmer. This will give you more resistant starch that acts as fiber in your body.

Brown rice, whole grains such as barley, quinoa, and couscous.

Brown rice has more fiber than refined white rice and magnesium can reduce the risk of heart disease.

Canned beans

You can stock up on black, pinto, and Great Northern varieties. Lippert suggests adding soups and side dishes to increase your protein and fiber intake. Tip: To reduce sodium, rinse them.

Dry lentils

These low-cal legumes are high in fiber and protein.

Asian sauces

Use flavorful soy, chili garlic, and teriyaki sauces that contain as little sodium as possible. Devin Alexander, FitTV’s Healthy Decadence host and author of


Honey is rich in antioxidants which sweeten dressings and marinades.

Peanut butter

Keri Gans, RD author of The Small Change Diet, said that regular stuff can often contain added sugar and vegetable oils.

Jams and preserves made from all-natural ingredients

Lippert suggests that you only choose jars that contain fruit, sugar, and pectin. Use the glaze to coat grilled meats.

Dried fruits

Mix chopped pieces in rice pilaf, stews, or with pork.

Dark chocolate chips

Studies show that a tablespoon contains approximately 70 calories and can help lower blood pressure.

Unsweetened applesauce

It can be mixed in pancake batter or spread on yogurt, oatmeal, and waffles according to Elisa Zied (RD), author of Nutrition at Your Fingertips.

Whole-grain cereals

Ansel suggests that you choose oatmeal and cold cereals with whole grains as the first ingredient.

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