There's a reason the cart filled with fresh fruits and veggies, low-fat dairy and lean proteins and fish typically belongs to the lean guy with great muscle tone or the "she must teach yoga" lady with great hair and skin. And when you look up from the cart filled with processed foods, sugary snacks and other Franken-foods, don't be surprised to see someone who looks like they eat lots of processed foods and sugar.
Your body is your machine, and if you feed it with crappy fuel, it will look and perform as such. Feed it with the best and most "real" fuel, and you will feel, look and perform stronger.
So here are 20 staples for a healthy fridge and pantry. This is another one to print and stick on the fridge!
The Badass 2012 Grocery List
- Eggs: Lean, cheap protein on the go. Hardboil a dozen every Sunday for the week ahead, and have an extra few handy for a fast and healthy "breakfast for dinner."
- Greek Yogurt: Lower in sugar, higher in protein than regular yogurt. Also sub it for sour cream.
- Almond Milk, Unsweetened: I use this in oatmeal and smoothies.
- String Cheese: Great mid-afternoon snack paired with a piece of fruit or whole wheat crackers
- Chicken Breasts: Cook up several on Sunday for lunches and dinners the week ahead
- Salmon, Mahi or Tuna: high-Omega seafood once or twice a week is a great goal
- Canned Tuna: Convenience factor plus lean protein with lots of nutrition for weekday lunches
- Almond or natural peanut butter: Healthy, tasty fats. Use on crackers, with fruit, or put a dollop in your smoothies
- Couscous: Easier to cook than brown rice, this whole grain is a great foundation for healthy salads and dinner side dish that can be made within 10 minutes.
- Whole wheat bread or pita
- Berries: High in antioxidants, low in calories and not super high in sugars
- Bananas: Potassium and natural sugar is great for pre- or post-workout energy
- Apples: Lots of fiber makes it a great snack when paired with a protein like string cheese or a tablespoon of almond butter
- Sweet potatoes: These are superior nutritionally to their white cousins, and are versatile. Pair a baked one with cinnamon and a dab of butter and honey to cure a sweet tooth, or slice and season them for baked 'fries.' The puree is also a great baking substitute for butter and oil, much like apple sauce or canned pumpkin.
- Spinach: Use it for salads, sautee it as a side with dinner or scramble it with eggs. Iron, fiber, and so much more.
- Green veggies: Asparagus, cucumbers, squash, broccoli, etc. Have at it because no one ever got overweight or unhealthy chowing down on these.
- Hummus: This is a must in my cart every week. Use it a low-fat sandwich spread, or with celery and carrots for a snack, or on toasted pita when the mid-afternoon snack craving hits.
- Roasted almonds: A handful mid-afternoon has the protein and good fats to keep you satisfied - and away from the snack machine.
- Organic Microwave Popcorn: When the salt craving hits, sometimes popcorn is all that will do. Have an emergency reserve supply just in case.
- Dove or Ghirardelli Dark Chocolate Squares: This is not a misprint. Sometimes, we just need something sweet. Dark chocolate is lower in sugar than milk chocolate, and has antioxidants. That said, moderation is key here. So buy the little squares, which are about 65 calories each, and just have one.