A Healthier You

Many people are eating healthier nowadays. Even more well-meaaning people would like to improve their daily diets but feel they lack the necessary skills, time and money. Many others begin a healthy eating plan only to abandon it days or weeks later.

Fresh fruits and vegetables are certainly crucial in any healthy eating plan. Many home cooks tend to always prepare these items the same way, i.e. steamed or roasted, and the result is that they quickly grow bored. This usually creates a perceived need for pre-prepared meals, either from a restaurant or grocery store shelf. Americans now spend over 90% of their food dollars on processed foods. This is clearly a recipe for disaster. A recent study published in The American Journal of Preventive Medicine reported the number of Americans who meet the recommended daily vegetable intake at a paltry 32%. The number was only that high because they allowed french fries to be counted as a vegetable.

Many decades of plentiful, seemingly cheap, mass-produced foods have created a generation without the cooking skills required to prepare delicious and nutritious food from scratch. Those same foods do indeed come with a high price. Obesity and disease have skyrocketed. Diabetes, heart disease and cancer are at epidemic levels and most health officials agree that poor nutrition is at the heart of the problem.

The good news is, it is never too late to change the way you eat and live. There is no one quick fix to such a large problem, but a food processor can help. This is because preparing your own food is the first step to taking control of your health. You can not rely upon processed foods with clever marketing strategies to give you optimal health. The food processor will make food preparation quick and easy, leaving little reason to not eat well. It will allow you to make delicious and nutritious meals from scratch without too much effort. Freshly prepared food has no need for preservatives, excess sodium or stabilizers which means you'll immediately improve your diet.

First and foremost, you definitely should be consuming lots and lots of vegetables and fruits. Whole grains should take the place of refined white grains. Sugar should be reduced or eliminated. Here are a few suggestions which can help:

Next "pizza night" make a homemade pizza with a whole grain crust. Top it with fresh vegetables such as peppers, mushrooms, garlic, onions or broccoli. Make the sauce out of puréed vegetables like carrots and red peppers in addition to the standard tomatoes. How can you find time in your hectic schedule? Let your food processor knead the dough, slice and chop the vegetables and purée the sauce. It will take a bit longer than a frozen pizza, but isn't your health worth it?

Use your food processor to chop carrots, onions, garlic, peppers and herbs and combine with canned tomatoes. Simmer for 30 minutes then fold in steamed broccoli. Serve over whole wheat pasta. The sauce can be made in bulk and frozen for a quick and healthy meal option.

Opt for a cucumber and yogurt salad in place of store-bought cole slaw or potato salads which tend to be full of trans fats and preservatives. The food processor can quickly slice the cucumbers for you, making this an easy alternative.

Combine fresh tomatoes, onions, garlic, peppers, cilantro, and lime juice in the work bowl of your food processor. You'll have fresh homemade salsa in minutes. It's perfect for topping fish or chicken instead of using store-bought sauces with high sugar and sodium levels.

Puree butternut squash in the food processor and combine it with honey, whole grains, spices and walnuts to make a healthy pumpkin bread. Eat it with a cup of tea in the afternoon when you're looking for a snack.

These are just a few examples of how you can take control of your health through home cookery. You'll find detailed recipes along with tips on finding the best food processor HERE

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