To cook up health in your kitchen, all you will require are some basic foods that can cover most of your nutritional requirements.
VEGETABLES: There is a plethora of veggies and having being told constantly told to eat a colorful meal, it gets confusing to make choices. Sometimes the availability and sometimes the expense makes it even more difficult. But let me list the easiest to stock your kitchen with.
1. Garlic is anti- inflammatory, anti-bacterial, has lots of anti-oxidants. It helps to regulate heart functioning and blood sugar. Garlic is known to help in proper metabolism, hemoglobin formation, enhances the sex hormone. An excellent source of B-6 (pyridoxine), calcium, Vitamin C and manganese.
2. Onion has Quercetin, an important protector against any infections. It also has anti -inflammatory properties and it helps in maintaining the gut flora(Stomach lining). It also has Biotin which is excellent for skin and hair.
3. Tomatoes have Lycopene, a protector from heart disease, along with plentiful of Vitamin C, folate and Vitamin K.
4. Sweet potatoes: A perfect replacement for potatoes with a low glycemic Index carb for energy. It releases energy as and when required, thereby not disturbing insulin balance. They also have Vitamin C, pantothenic acid(Vitamin B5) and Pyridoxine(Vitamin B6), manganese, copper, potassium, dietary fiber, niacin, vitamin B1, vitamin B2 and phosphorus.
All of this enhances energy production, antioxidant and aids collagen.
5. Spinach is of the best forms Iron and is high on enriching hemoglobin levels. It also has Vitamin C, Vitamin A, Potassium, Magnesium and dietary fiber.
FRUITS : There is always the problem of fresh produce and storage along with expense and availability. So here is the one simple solution that is easiest.
1. Lemons are a source of Vitamin C, Vitamin A, Potassium Helps in neutralizing the stomach acid. It is good for weight loss, skin health and hydration as well as a great anti-oxidants.
2. Bananas are the easiest instant energy givers. They are high on carbs but they are an excellent source of potassium, Vit C, Magnesium and B-6 (Pyridoxine)
GRAINS & PULSES : These are staples that we need in every household and also for every meal. In India there is no dearth to the variety that we have where pulses and grains are concerned, I will list those that cover the wholesome health source in an everyday meal
1. Chickpeas are the best vegetarian source of protein mixed with carbs for energy. High on iron, along with calcium, potassium, Vitamin B3 and dietary fiber rolled into one. This is can be a meal by itself.
2. Moongdal is easy to digest. It is a good source of protein. It also has Vitamin B1, B2, B3, potassium, magnesium, Iron and Phosperous and even Calcium. The green covering of the dal provides an excellent nutritive source of fiber.
3. Brown Or Unpolished rice is a healthier option for the Indian household which has to make regular food of dal and sabji(vegetables). It is enriched with magnesium, Vitamin B, iron and dietary fiber. Easier on the stomach than wheat and definitely more satiating.
NON-VEGETERIANS : for those who cannot do without their non-veg food, there is one source that has it all.
Eggs make for a complete nutritional meal. Rich in protein, omegas, Vitamin D, Vitamin B12, Phosperous, Iron and Folate (B9), Pantothenic Acid(B5), Selenium, Lutein and Zeaxanthin. Cooking eggs has many a variety. They can be made into curries, scrambled with spices, used in salads, used as a binder. It is filling and wholesome with satiety level being very high.
SPICES : The basic spices like turmeric, cumin, coriander, chillies and cinnamon have all the immunity building, and anti-inflammatory properties. They are also gut protectors, blood sugar regulators and anti- depressants.
These are the foods can keep your kitchen running smoothly that help you maintain your family’s health without too much stress or expense. All you have to do is use some creativity in your recipes.