Whole grains are naturally high in fiber, helping you feel full, which makes it easier to maintain a healthy weight. Whole grains are also linked to a lower risk of heart disease, diabetes and other health problems. To add more fiber to your diet, try these simple tips: 1. Start your day with whole-grain cereal, such as whole-wheat bran flakes, shredded wheat or oatmeal. 2. Make sandwiches with bread or rolls made from 100 percent whole grain. 3. Opt for brown rice instead of white rice.
If you spot mold on a wedge of hard cheese, such as cheddar or Parmesan, you may be able to salvage the cheese. Cut away the moldy part and at least 1 inch (2.5 centimeter) of the surrounding cheese, keeping the knife out of the mold. Moldy shredded or crumbled cheese can't be saved, however, and should be discarded.
Keep leftovers in the fridge no more than three to four days to prevent food poisoning. If you won't eat leftovers in that time, freeze them immediately. Perishable foods, such as meat, poultry, fish, dairy, eggs and casseroles, shouldn't be left out longer than two hours, or one hour in temperatures above 90 F (32 C).
Short on time but still want to stick to your healthy-eating plan? For quick and simple cooking, choose a dish that serves as a full meal. Three healthy examples: 1. Beef, barley and vegetable stew. 2. Chicken, vegetable and rice casserole. 3. Vegetarian chili with beans and diced vegetables.
Getting in at least three servings of fruit a day is easier than you think. But if you're tired of the same old fruit options, try these two variations. 1. Blend it. In a blender, add 2 fresh or frozen bananas, 1/2 cup fresh or frozen blueberries, and 1 cup low-fat vanilla yogurt. Blend until smooth. 2. Grill it. Cut apples, pears or peaches into chunks, brush lightly with canola oil, and sprinkle with cinnamon. Place on skewers or wrap in foil. Grill on low heat for 3 to 5 minutes.
Instead of grilling a hamburger, try grilling a hearty portobello mushroom. Marinate a large portobello mushroom in Italian dressing for 15 minutes. Grill over medium heat until tender, about 5 minutes on each side. Serve on a whole-grain bun with healthy condiments.
Instead of fat-laden ice cream or cake, create a low-fat, low-sodium treat with the grill. Try pineapple or any firm fruit. Brush the fruit lightly with canola oil and sprinkle with cinnamon. Then wrap in foil and grill. Keep a close eye it. Fruit cooks quickly.
Braising, broiling, grilling and steaming can capture the flavor and nutrients of your food without adding excess fat, oil or sodium. If your recipe calls for frying with oil or butter, try baking or broiling the food instead. If the directions say to baste the meat or vegetables in oil or drippings, use wine, fruit juice, vegetable juice or fat-free vegetable broth instead.
If you're planning a party, put food safety at the top of your to-do list. To protect your guests from food poisoning, don't let perishable foods sit out more than two hours at typical room temperature or more than one hour at temperatures above 90 F (32 C). Your goal is to minimize the time a food is in the danger zone between 40 and 140 F (4 and 60 C) when bacteria can quickly multiply.
Want to cook healthier meals with less fat and salt? Try these tips: 1. Kick it up with herbs and spices. 2. Try wine, balsamic vinegar or fruit juice instead of oil-based marinades. 3. Use dried mushrooms, tomatoes, chilies or cranberries when you want a burst of flavor.