Nutrition savvy bees, critique my purchase.

posted 3 months ago in The Lounge
Post # 2
9814 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper
  • Wedding: September 2015

 Thats a good looking list! Tortilla chips are still fried, gluten or not though. So if you want to be a total angel next time replace that with baby carrots for hummus snacking.

Post # 3
2863 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: June 2016

That looks great! My rule when I make my grocery list is to have about 70% of the items be fruits and veggies, 20%-30% whole grains/beans/dry ingredients, and maybe one or two processed items (I eat a plant-based diet). I know it’s so hard when you’re first starting out, but I promise when you stick to it, you’ll start to crave those “real” foods! 

I don’t think the chips are that big of a deal, but maybe try carrots or celery next time for the hummus. And just buy some popcorn kernels to pop yourself on the stove if you’re craving a snack similar to chips. That way you can control the salt/butter intake, and it’s not fried.

I meal prep every Sunday so that I don’t have to cook much throughout the week. Yesterday I spent an hour and 15 minutes prepping, and now I have 5 mason jar taco salads, 3 meals worth of couscous, pinto beans, and asparagus, and a giant pot of lentil chili. You should definitely consider prepping! I love it because it’s easier to reach into my fridge and grab the premade salad than it is to go out and spend money on junk food.

Post # 5
2056 posts
Buzzing bee

-Siggi’s Icelandic yogurts: Great job! Buy plain and eat with low-sugar fruit like blueberries

-Romaine lettuce: Good, but be sure to mix in kale and spinach for more vitamin and nutrient variety!

-Spinach: Yes!

-Chicken: If you can afford, buy free range – those chickens have a better/more varied diet, and those benefit are transferred to you. Don’t be afraid of thighs, if breasts are too plain/dry for you. Fat in diet does NOT equal fat in your body.

-Eggs: If you can afford, buy eggs from free range brands. We have discovered Vital Farms eggs, and LOVE them!

-Blueberries: Yes! Try dumping some in yogurt and then freezing. 🙂

-Hummus: Great option – try to eat with carrots and/or celery instead of chips. 

-Gluten free tortilla chips: I am with you here – chips are my weakness, and even if I can eat 90% of the time pure whole, healthy food, I HAVE to have a few chips every now and then. My only suggestion here is to pour into a bowl or portion out into small baggies instead of eating straight from the bag!

(Also, ALL tortilla chips are gluten free by nature of the fact they are made out of corn, which has no gluten. Just a note not to fall for marketing gimmicks!)

-guacamole: Great food, but eat sparingly – very calorie (fat)-dense, and easy to go over your calorie “allotment” because “it’s healthy food!”

-bananas: Another great food that is calorie (sugar)-dense, so don’t splurge here. 

One thing I’ve discovered recently that I LOVE is frozen red grapes. I get the smaller variety (specifically from Trader Joe’s), rinse, toss in the freezer. They have almost entirely replaced chips for me since I grab them out of the freezer now when I get home from work instead of reaching for a bag od chips. I like to rinse them again before putting into a bowl b/c the water freezes on them, creating even MORE crunch.

Yes, it is a lot of sugar, but I think that’s better for me than eating nutrient-devoid, fried chips!

Post # 6
2863 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: June 2016

summerrose5 :  I haven’t eaten meat in like 10 years so I don’t know much about that. I would think it might work to prepare everything aside from the meat? That way it’s still a few less things to do during the week. 

I sometimes freeze it, sometimes don’t. Mason jars are super helpful because the food stays fresh in the fridge inside the air tight jar. Look up mason jar salads. You basically just put the ingredients in the jar with wet on bottom and dry on top. It all stays fresh, and even by Friday the lettuce is still crisp. 

Soups and chili are awesome because you can freeze them and they still taste great.

I didn’t used to like cooking until I got into eating healthy. Maybe it’ll happen for you, too!

Post # 7
5128 posts
Bee Keeper

summerrose5 :  I’m with you and think reheated chicken is the grossest thing on the planet. I get around it by only eating leftover chicken cold on salads. I make a ton of mason jar salads at the beginning of the week and then I don’t have to think about it again. It takes only a few extra minutes to make 5 salads instead of 1. 

Post # 8
1496 posts
Bumble bee

Consider getting an instantpot.  Makes bulk-cooking and meal prepping so much easier!

Weekends, I cook 1-2 batches of things like soups or stews that can be frozen and heated up easily. I also meal-prep by preparing the ingredients for a recipe and throwing them into a ziplock bag and refrigerating or freezing the bagged ingredients until ready to cook.  So easy to come home and just pull out a bag and dump the contents into the instant pot, then dinner about 30 minutes later!

One of my favorites is to cook chicken with a jar of salsa, then shred the meat.  Works as taco filling, salad topping, sandwich filling, add to soup, or anything, really.  

Post # 9
510 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: August 2016

summerrose5 :  Skip the tortilla chips and replace with a multi-grain cracker or a rice cracker. Whole Foods has great options.

Post # 10
724 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: October 2016

Everything looks good to me exept the tortilla chips. You could opt for snap peas, carrots, sliced bell peppers, or endives. I’d just choose whatever is on sale or in season. Then again, I do think being 80% healthy, 20% more indulgent is fine so it’s not necessarily a bad thing to keep around.

Romaine isn’t the most nutrient dense lettuce, but better than iceberg.

The hummus can be hit or miss depending on the brand–for example sabra is one of the least healthy even though it’s common and tastes good. You can also make it yourself really easily–I use canned chickpeas. Tahini is pricey and I don’t use enough of it, so I just buy sesame seeds instead and quickly toast them in a pan before tossing them in the blender with chickpeas, olive oil, salt, pepper, lemon juice and whatever other seasonings (like roasted garlic, or red peppers). That way you can control the amount and type of oil being used, and it only takes maybe 10 minutes to make.

From a nutritional standpoint, I’m not a big fan of bananas. They’re high in sugar and apart from potassium they don’t offer a whole lot.

Are you looking for healthy foods on a budget? If so, I’d definitely recommend dried beans to bulk up meals. I also like buying whatever veggies are seasonal–it forces you to get creative if it’s not a typical veggie for you, and it’s a big money saver.

Oh, and I agree about reheated chicken. Such a strange taste. It has to be in something really flavorful for me to be able to tolerate it. Usually I just eat all my leftover chicken cold. If I meal prep, I put the chicken in its own container and toss it on top after I’ve heated everything else up.

Post # 12
162 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: May 2014

It’s a pretty good start! One thing I’ll say: start small with this, but you might get burned out without variety. An easy way to add variety is to get some items that you can add to your salads and mix and match. Such as walnuts, craisins, avocado, feta cheese, etc. And you can easily make a variety of different salad dressings with a few ingredients that you mix and match: olive oil, balsamic vinegar, lemon juice, salt, pepper, dijon mustard… to name a few. You could make a salad dressing each week and leave in a glass jar in your fridge.

Other quick and easy ideas:

– Cottage cheese with avocado or chopped bell pepper. Add salt and pepper on top!

– Have staples that you can make ahead of time – such as  the correct portions of brown rice for the next 4-5 days, separating the veggies into individual bags so they are grab and go, etc

– Go to Costco for the individual-sized packs of hummus/guacamole, etc that you can eat with baby carrots or chopped veggies.

Post # 13
228 posts
Helper bee

summerrose5 :  +1 on the reheated food thing, a lot of “leftovers” gross me out, or i prep them and just want to eat something else.  What works better for me as far as food prep goes is to just prep my ingredients in advance.  On Sunday or Monday I’ll just cut up all the vegetables for each recipe or snack I plan on having all at once and put that in containers or ziploc bags, cut up fruits into containers, and maybe make a pot of soup to eat throughout the week.  That way I can just dump things into a pan and cook them.  For meat you can totally put the amount of servings you usually cook into ziplocks with any marinades or seasonings you want ot use and store it in the fridge or freezer.  It cuts down on cooking time for sure.  

Re: the chips, not sure if you have an allergy/sensitivity to gluten, but if not, no need to worry about avoiding it.  As far as chips in general go, whatever will help you stick to your healthy eating plan is the right way to go!  What seems to work best for me is to just plan reasonable portions of that kinda stuff into a couple of my meals/snacks each week so I don’t want to just say ‘screw it’ and eat a bunch of junk.  For other people, its easier just to not eat that stuff.  So, to each their own!  I totally agree with the person who suggested homemade stovetop popcorn.  Nuts and seeds are also a good option for salty crunchy things!

Post # 14
1046 posts
Bumble bee

What do you plan to cook with these ingredients. Sounds healthy but I can’t see what you’ll be making other than salads every day?

Post # 15
3497 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: November 1999

summerrose5 :  I love crunch and crackers and chips are my weakness.

I’ve been buying pita bread or whole tortillas and cutting them into pieces, brushing with a small amount of oil and adding oregano, chilli powder, garlic powder on top and putting them on a baking tray to toast them up. I eat them with my home made tzatziki, eggplant dip and hummus. They give me the crunch without the extra fat from frying and the high amount of salt you usually find in chips/crackers. Kale chips and roasted chickpeas are really easy to prepare and are yummy snack ideas too.


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