Hey Angels and Alphas,
Despite your best intentions, it can be a struggle to make healthy food choices. Between all the meal planning, grocery shopping, and food prepping, it’s very easy to just give up or fall off track. But through simple practices such as stocking your pantry with healthy food options, you’ll be able to ensure you always have something on hand when hunger strikes.
Below, we’re going to explore five foods that are absolute must-have staples in your pantry. Stock up on each of these, and you’ll see how they lead to promoting better decision-making and healthier eating at home.
#1 FRUIT BARS
The healthiest snacks you can find out there have simple, whole-food ingredients. They also contain low or no added sugar. And finally, they actually bring you some nutritional value. A pantry staple like this will help you meet your fruit goals, whether it’s when you need a snack on the go or when you’ve run out of other meal options.
#2 CANNED TUNA
Very few people eat the generally recommended two servings of seafood per week. That’s why canned tuna is one of the best pantry staple picks out there. They’re rich in vitamin D which is absolutely essential for immune function.
They’re also abundant in omega-3 fatty acids which are anti-inflammatory fats that are vital to brain and heart health. Not to mention, it’s a great source of protein. Tune is much more versatile than you might think. It’s not just for tuna salad sandwiches. Try tossing it inside some pasta with olives and veggies for a more well-rounded dinner or mix some tuna together with sesame oil and tamari and serve it over a batch of greens.
#3 PULSE-BASED PASTA
A typical box of pasta is made from water and flour. But pulse-based pastas are made from more nutritious ingredients such as lentils and chickpeas which provide added protein and fiber. Cooking with some pulse-based pasta is a much quicker and easier way to add balance to your meals because you don’t necessarily have to cook a separate protein component. It’s all in one product and you can just add veggies and sauce and enjoy a delicious, nutritious meal.
Unsweetened dry oats have a ton of benefits going for them. They contain a wide spectrum of nutrients such as magnesium, selenium, zinc, iron, fiber, and more. Oatmeal is a pretty natural choice when you have dry oats lying around, and here’s a fun fact: if you eat them raw, they’ll provide you with more prebiotic fiber known as resistant starch.
Studies have shown that resistant starch assists with the body’s blood sugar regulation and weight management. It can also help reduce the bloating caused by gas. To make the most out of them, sprinkle some raw oats over a salad, on top of some avocado toast, or use them to coat your homemade energy bites. They’re delicious, healthy, and versatile – a true staple.
Walnuts contain more ALA (which is an anti-inflammatory fatty acid) than any other nut. Each serving of walnuts contains 2 grams of fiber, 2 grams of protein, and a ton of polyphenol antioxidants which are all healthy for the gut.
Several studies have found associations between walnuts and improved appetite control. This may be why data from the Nurses’ Health Study has shown that people who have boosted their walnut intake have gained less weight and had a lower risk of developing obesity over a 20-year follow-up period.
Walnuts are versatile. You can eat them by themselves, add them to yogurt, oatmeal, salads, pilafs, you name it. And you can also use crushed walnuts in place of breadcrumbs when cooking seafood or chicken. But remember, while unopened walnuts are an amazing pantry staple, they should be usually kept in the freezer once opened.