Healthy Diet Weight Loss

Healthy Diet Details

Technically healthy cooking is a regimen that includes all the nutrients you body needs to function well. Your daily intake of food should be comprised of approximately 55% carbohydrates, 20-35% daily fiber, 15% from lean animal or vegetable protein, seafood or poultry and no more than 30% of our daily calories should come from fat. Nutritionist say we should consume 1100 to 330 milligrams of sodium daily but most people eat more.

By following a healthy diet plan, not only will you feel better, you will also lose weight. this an easy way to achieve weight loss without feeling hungry all of the time.

Fresh Vegetables are Healthy Foods

source cookinglight
source cookinglight

Methods of Cooking

Healthy cooking methods are important if you want to cut back on the fat and unnecessary calories. The four most common methods of cooking:

  • Pan frying: Use nonstick or good quality cookware to reduce the amount of butter or oil. The healthiest oils are olive, peanut, safflower or canola. Fry quickly to seal in juices and you will get a flavorful well-browned surface. This works well for stir frying also. Low fat marinade is also useful.
  • Roasting: Use only a thin coating of nonstick cooking spray on a roasting pan. Roast meat on a high heat and I have a rack in the bottom of my roaster for the extra fat and juice to drain to keep the calories lower in the meat.
  • Braising: Gentle cooking in stock or other well-seasoned liquid with only a small amount of added fat will give you a succulent meat, poultry, fish or vegetables.
  • Grilling or Broiling: Searing heat draws the fat away from the grilled or broiled foods while locking in the flavor and moisture. Marinade or basting liquids can enhance flavor.

Make Your Own Vegetable Stock

Making your own roasted vegetable stock is worth the effort as it yields fresher tasting than canned alternatives. Roasting the vegetables for a longer period of time will give you a darker, better flavored result.

  • 7 large carrots, unpeeled, cut into chunks
  • 3 yellow onions, unpeeled, quartered
  • 8 celery stalks, cut into chunks
  • ½ lb fresh mushrooms with stems intact, brushed clean and quartered
  • 1 large baking potato, unpeeled, cut into chunks
  • 2 cups water
  • 4-6 fresh thyme or parsley sprigs, or a mixture
  • ¼ tsp. whole peppercorns, crushed
  • 1 bay leaf

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Coat a large roasting pan with nonstick cooking spray.

Spread vegetables in pan and bake for 45 minutes to 1 hour, or up to 1 1/2 hours for a stronger flavor, stirring once or twice.

Remove from oven and transfer the vegetables to a large stockpot. Add the 2 cups of water to the roasting pan, then stir and scrape the bottom with a spatula to remove any browned bits. Add to the stockpot along with 4 ½ quarts of water, thyme and or parsley, peppercorns and bay leaf. Bring to a boil over high heat, skimming off any scum from surface. Reduce the heat to low and cover partially, simmering for 2 hours.

Strain the stock through a sieve or colander into a large bowl. Discard solids. Let the stock cool, then store in the refrigerator for up to 4 days or in the freezer for up to 3 months. This will make 4 quarts. Stock may be used as the primary cooking liquid for simmering poultry, meats, fish or vegetables, along with herbs, or spices. By making your own stock and using it this way you can control the amount of salt, and all the extra chemicals that are used in making stock be buy in cans at the grocery store,

Vegetable Stock from The Way to Eat

Book by David L. Katz, M.D.
Book by David L. Katz, M.D.

Well Stocked Pantry

source flickr
source flickr

Well Stocked Pantry

Another very important aspect of healthy cooking is a well stocked pantry with healthy food for meals and snacks. The convenience factor of available healthy food has a large impact as to what types of meals we prepare.

If the food you have on hand presently is not healthy, than it is time to clean out the pantry, refrigerator, cupboards and freezer to begin your new dietary patterns. A well stocked pantry can be your ultimate fast food location right in your home.

A well stock pantry has all your dried grains and beans. Choose the healthiest products, such as; wheat berries, barley, lentils, soy beans, brown rice, small white beans, veggie burger mix, whole grain breads, whole grain wraps or pita, to name just a few. Breakfast items should include your fortified healthy cereals, steel cut oats, oatmeal, pancake mix, 100% maple syrup and honey.

Seeds and snacks that are healthy include sunflower, pumpkin seeds, flax seeds, pine nuts, walnuts, hazelnuts, almonds and soy nuts.

Oils and vinegars are usually in the pantry also. The healthiest choices are canola, olive and flax seed oil. The vinegars include balsamic, red wine, and apple cider.

As for your canned products, a larger variety of beans will come in handy with chick peas, cannellini, black and red kidney beans being the best choice. Keep crushed, whole plum and diced tomatoes, tomato paste, corn kennels, tuna in water, salmon in water, fat-free refried beans, pumpkin and evaporated skim milk.

Nourishing Whole Grain Bread

source fanobread
source fanobread

Healthy Fruits and Vegetables

source flickr
source flickr

Well Stocked Refrigerator

source appliancenet
source appliancenet

Refrigerator and Freezer Items

In your refrigerator the suggested list is a bit longer. Keep skim, soy or rice milk, fat-free buttermilk, orange or other 100% natural juices, flaxseed oil, omega-3 eggs, low fat yogurt, low-fat string cheese, fat-free pudding, nonfat ricotta, tofu, Mozzarella cheese, part-skim, Dijon mustard, fat-free salsa, hummus, avocado, unsalted peanut butter, a healthy margarine, all-fruit preserves. Then, in your produce drawer keep lemons/limes, tomatoes, scallions, bagged baby carrots, bagged spinach, lettuce of mixed greens, other produce (like broccoli, zucchini, squash, etc), sun dried tomatoes, fresh herbs (one bunch at a time as the they have a short shelf life), roasted red peppers in vinegar, horseradish, olives, capers fat-free polenta and whole grain sliced bread.

Moving on to the freezer, keep frozen berries, i.e. strawberries, blueberries, etc., lean ground turkey, filet of sole, peas, boneless, skinless chicken breast, shrimp, salmon steaks or fillets, veggie burgers, fat-free yogurt, sorbet, and you can keep fruit juice concentrates.

Seasonings

source jollycooking
source jollycooking

Seasonings

Seasonings are most important as we can add all kinds of wonderful flavors to otherwise bland food. The list is long but I imagine you already have many of these in your home. The suggested healthy seasonings include; garlic powder, nutmeg, oregano, paprika, red pepper flakes, salt (or lite salt), thyme leaves, ground turmeric, rosemary, basil, cinnamon, coriander, cumin, curry, cilantro, fennel seeds, bread crumbs (unsalted), cooking wines (vermouth, sherry, red), dried mushrooms, fat-free low-sodium vegetable and chicken broth, low-sodium soy sauce, and fresh black peppercorns and pepper mill.

In Conclusion

There are some root vegetables to keep on hand as well; potatoes (baking, red, Yukon gold, sweet or yam), fresh garlic cloves, onions (yellow and red), shallots, fresh ginger root.

Last, but not least for many people are the healthy snacks. Fresh fruit tops the list and is always preferable over caned. Keep a variety of dried fruit also, such as raisins, dates, figs, and apricots. Keep fat-free whole grain crackers, pretzels, corn chips, salsa, microwave popcorn, trail mix and some homemade or healthy granola bars.

Obviously you and your family may not like all the things listed here, but this long list is to give you an idea of the healthy choices that are preferable. If you empty your pantry and refrigerator of the fattening unhealthy food, these are numerous healthy items you can purchase to restock. Then, it’s up to you to grab a quick healthy snack versus that candy bar, or come home and put fish in the oven instead of driving through the fast food restaurant. It is much easier to adhere to a healthy cooking diet with the proper nutrients when you have a nice variety of healthy food at your fingertips.

© 2010 Pamela Oglesby

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Comments 35 comments

Tom Whitworth profile image

Tom Whitworth 6 years ago from Moundsville, WV

Pamela,

Holy mackerel this seems complicated. I'm going to save this hub for reference.


Pamela99 profile image

Pamela99 6 years ago from United States Author

Tom, You probably already have many healthy ingredients in your home, so it may not be so complicated after all. The vegetable stock recipe is just an option. Thank for your comment.


breakfastpop profile image

breakfastpop 6 years ago

Dear Pamela,

Terrific hub and I especially like the directions for the stock. Thanks so much.


martycraigs profile image

martycraigs 6 years ago

Wow, this Hub is filled with so many great tips, techniques, advice, recipes, etc! What a great job, I thoroughly enjoyed reading this. I've never considered making my own vegetable stock, but just might attempt it soon.


rkhyclak profile image

rkhyclak 6 years ago from Ohio

Great hub! If at all possible I try to make and freeze stock...so much healthier than purchased and yummier too!


Pamela99 profile image

Pamela99 6 years ago from United States Author

rkhyclak, Thank you so much for your comment.


Amber Allen profile image

Amber Allen 6 years ago

A hub brimming over with useful info. Well done.

Amber:)


Pamela99 profile image

Pamela99 6 years ago from United States Author

Amber, thank you for your comment.


Darlene Sabella profile image

Darlene Sabella 6 years ago from Hello, my name is Toast and Jam, I live in the forest with my dog named Sam ...

This is an awesome hub, I am trying to eat healthy, but it's so hard, I don't like healthy food. However if I was really rick I could hire someone to cook for me and hide the healthy food inside the junk food, Umm I guess that won't happen. Thank you for another one of your fantastic hubs.


habee profile image

habee 6 years ago from Georgia

We're really trying to eat healthier, and this was great info!


prettydarkhorse profile image

prettydarkhorse 6 years ago from US

this is very good information Pam, and I wrote a hub about healthy cooking but then this one added lots of stock of knowledge to me, thank you, Maita


Pamela99 profile image

Pamela99 6 years ago from United States Author

Darlent, Habee and Miata, Thank you for your comments. I'm glad you liked the hub. I struggle with eating healthy all the time also. Sometimes I do really well but I have my off days too.


"Quill" 6 years ago

Great Hub Pam...love the way you share about stock...I love making soup in our house...

Blessing and Hugs


Ann Nonymous profile image

Ann Nonymous 6 years ago from Virginia

Ooooh sounds and looks great Pamela and full of sound advice. Of course i had to read this when I feel the need for a midnight snack!


anglnwu profile image

anglnwu 6 years ago

I love a well-stocked pantry. Thanks for the detailed information--very useful for anyone striving to eat and live healthy.


Pamela99 profile image

Pamela99 6 years ago from United States Author

Quill, Ann and Anginwu, Thank you so much for your comments.


Ken R. Abell profile image

Ken R. Abell 6 years ago from ON THE ROAD

Well done. Great information. As someone who tries to pay attention to nutrition, this was affirming & encouraging. Thank you.


Pamela99 profile image

Pamela99 6 years ago from United States Author

Ken, Thanks for your comment. I agree with you and I tried to think of someone making a change so they could be more successful.


betherann profile image

betherann 6 years ago from Montana

I have never tried braising. Now I will have to!


Hello, hello, profile image

Hello, hello, 6 years ago from London, UK

Thank you for all these lots and lots of good tips. You are great.


nancy_30 profile image

nancy_30 6 years ago from Georgia

Thank you for all this wonderful information.


Pamela99 profile image

Pamela99 6 years ago from United States Author

Betherann, Hello and Nancy. Thanks so much for your comments.


Roberta99 profile image

Roberta99 6 years ago

As usual, a great hub. Will have to try the vegetable stock. Love soup.


Pamela99 profile image

Pamela99 6 years ago from United States Author

Roberta, Thank you for the comment and hope you enjoy the vegetable stock.


dohn121 profile image

dohn121 6 years ago from Hudson Valley, New York

What wonderful tips, Pamela! Growing up in a very frugal family with two older brothers and sisters, we didn't have any luxuries. Somehow or way, we managed to get through (truth be told, we really didn't have enough food for any of us to become overweight!). And thanks for the stock recipe as well, as I'm a bit of a pack-rat when it comes to hording recipes!

Thanks again, Pamela.


Support Med. profile image

Support Med. 6 years ago from Michigan

Good hub. I have only made my own stock a few times. It is definitely more tasteful and moneysaving when you make it on your own (especially since you can freeze it for a long period of time, which I did not know!!) Thanks!!


Pamela99 profile image

Pamela99 6 years ago from United States Author

dohn, When you grow up barely squeaking by it does affect the way you conduct yourself as an adult. I am very careful with money and always keep a little stash because we had so little when I was young that I learned to save money at a young age.

Support Med, I'm glad you liked the stock recipe. Thank you both for your comments.


 6 years ago

Dearest Pam...

Excellent hub! Very informative, nutritious and hunger provoking! I liked it very much! I am book marking it,

Rating it and Stumbling it!

Warmest regards and infinite blessings,

Al


JannyC profile image

JannyC 6 years ago

You answered my cooking crisis! I have wanted to make homemade soups but I didn't like the chicken stock it has so much sodium in it. Im like how can I make my own broth. Well now I know! Keep pumping them hubs out.


Pamela99 profile image

Pamela99 6 years ago from United States Author

Janny, I'm glad this hub helped. I think that stock is very good. Thanks for your comments.


susanlang profile image

susanlang 6 years ago

Now this is so tasty...I love your veggie stock tip.


Pamela99 profile image

Pamela99 6 years ago from United States Author

Susanlang, Thank you so much for your comment.


Pamela99 profile image

Pamela99 6 years ago from United States Author

Ted, I am glad you stopped by and I appreciate your comment.


Tonipet profile image

Tonipet 4 years ago from The City of Generals

Hi Pamela. I have saved this recipe. I used to stock "stock" in the fridge for an easy grab in case I need some, but I've never tried freezing up to 3 months! Amazing that I'm trying your recipe. Useful hub Pam, I liked it. THANKS!


Pamela99 profile image

Pamela99 4 years ago from United States Author

Tonipet, I'm so glad you found this recipe useful and I appreciate your comments.

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