Foods Nutritionists Always Have in Their Kitchens from Foods Nutritionists Always Have in Their Kitchens

Foods Nutritionists Always Have in Their Kitchens

Marketing professionals are experts at masking certain bad foods. For example, some protein bars are glorified candies. Also, while plain Greek yogurt is good for you, the flavored versions are not. So how do you know whether what you’re eating is actually healthy? Many people rely on help from nutritionists. Knowing what they consume and what their go-to snacks are for any situation is a start.

Natural peanut butter

iStock

It is a great source of protein and monounsaturated fats, which are the good fats, Dyan Hes, MD, Medical Director of Gramercy Pediatrics and Obesity Expert, says. “Two tablespoons is a tasty snack on its own or smeared onto apple slices or some whole grain toast.”

Hummus

Shutterstock

“Once again a great snack on its own or uses as a dip or spread,” Dr. Hes says. It is a good source of protein, fiber, and healthy fats, he adds. “I can dip it in carrots or use it with some wheat crackers or pita chips for a snack. I also use it instead of mayo or mustard on my sandwiches.”

Turkey breast

Shutterstock

Only when the turkey was raised without antibiotics and the meat contains no nitrites, Dr. Hes says. “When I am hungry and don't have time for a meal or my kids need a snack, this is a go to,” she adds. “We eat it plain or use it for roll ups with some avocado, cucumbers, or pickles inside. I even eat turkey roll ups for breakfast.”

Eggs

Shutterstock

Eggs are a great protein option and a healthy fat source with omega fatty acids, Monica Moore, owner and registered dietitian nutritionist at Body by Monica, says. “They can be cooked so many different ways for variety and are one of the cheapest protein sources you can buy!” Dr. Hes says he boils up a bunch on the weekend so he can grab them in the morning.

Dried fruit

iStock

“Of course, I love fresh fruit, but unsweetened dried fruit is great for those days that you did not go food shopping or you are stuck in your office and you need a sweet treat,” Dr. Hes says. “I'm a big fan of apples and mangoes but I will basically eat any dried fruit.” Dried apricots are a great source of potassium, she adds.

Green tea

iStock

Green tea is great pick-me-up instead of that coffee that may give you heartburn, Dr. Hes says. The polyphenolic compounds are supposed to have a myriad of health benefits, which range from anti-cancer properties to improved metabolism, he adds.

"Mean" green shake ingredients

Shutterstock

Joe Bauer, nutritionist and personal trainer in Seattle, says he always has spinach, kale, full fat yogurt, Udo’s Oils, protein powder, and cinnamon. “I always have these ingredients/foods in the house. This Mean Green Shake (as I call it) provides me with natural vitamins and minerals, essential fatty acids, protein, as well as the much needed fiber.” He drinks one of these shakes at least once a day. 

Old fashioned oatmeal

Shutterstock

“I’ve always loved a big hearty bowl of oatmeal,” Bauer says. Oatmeal is a great way to get slow burning, fibrous carbs, and it also provides some fats and protein, he adds. “I like to prepare my oatmeal with a tablespoon of Udo’s Oils, a scoop of chocolate or vanilla protein powder, a quarter cup of wheat germ, and a pinch of cinnamon. Delicious!”

Sweet potatoes

Shutterstock

“It seems like there’s a push for low carbs these days, but if you’re an athlete, or someone that works out hard in the gym, you need a lot of quality carbs to fuel your training, Bauer says. “Like oatmeal, sweet potatoes are a great source of slow burning, fibrous carbs, and something that you’ll always find in my kitchen.” They can be baked into sweet potato fries or tossed into the slow cooker with some meat for many days of delicious meals. 

High quality meats

Shutterstock

“I don’t really discriminate against meats,” Bauer says. “Personally, I try to stay away from red meats, but that has to do with my personal blood work.” When buying meats, make sure they are grass-fed, and free-range, and source where they are coming from, he adds. “I usually have some kind of chicken or turkey in the fridge to make sure I’m going to hit my daily protein requirements.”

RX Bars

RX Bars

“I eat about 2-3 of these a week, and make sure to have them on hand, just in case it’s not easy to grab a meal,’ Bauer says. “They are my go-to bars because of the basic ingredient list, and I like the texture and taste.”

Olive oil

Shutterstock

Mia Russo Stern, Founder of Brooklyn Culinary Arts, says she always has a good olive oil for salads or sautéing a clove of garlic for fresh spinach. Dr. Hes is a fan of olive oil, too. “I always have a gallon around! I use it to drizzle on my veggies or to sauté my meals,” he adds.

Organic BPA canned beans

Shutterstock

“I would have to say that I always have organic BPA canned beans in my kitchen,” Stern says. “I can always whip together a cold bean salad, add them to pasta, blend them up with olive oil and lemon for a dip, or spread for a veggie sandwich.” Chickpeas are among her favorites.

Oats

iStock

Oats are a whole grain that are high in fiber and keep you full and satisfied, Moore says. “They are heart healthy, inexpensive, and can last in the pantry a while.” They can be cooked alone for hearty oatmeal, mixed with fruits or spices for variety of oatmeal options, or used for baking in muffins, cookies, and breads, she adds.

Avocado

Shutterstock

“Avocado is probably my favorite food of all, and there is good reason why they have been nicknamed “God’s butter,” Dr. Daryl Gioffre, Founder of Alkamind and celebrity nutritionist, says. First and foremost, they are extremely versatile, and can be used in just about anything, even in a dessert, “such as my decadent avocado chocolate mousse,” he adds. They are rich in vitamins K, C, B5, and B6 as well as some key alkaline minerals such as calcium, manganese and phosphorus, potassium, zinc, magnesium, and iron. “I always have some that are ripe, waiting to be used in a moment's notice.  I also keep some in the fridge, as they can stay fresh for up to 3 weeks.”

Greek yogurt

iStock

Deborah Malkoff-Cohen, registered dietitian and certified diabetes educator, says she always has high protein foods in her kitchen because they keep you full for longer and don’t cause a huge spike in blood sugar levels. She recommends plain yogurt to avoid the added sugar and artificial sweeteners in the flavored kind. “I add my own fruit like berries, banana or cantaloupe. You can also make it savory by adding chickpeas.”

Cottage cheese

Shutterstock

“I have a love-hate relationship with cottage cheese but I always have it at home,” Malkoff-Cohen says. It has protein and it goes well with high-fiber and antioxidant-rich berries, in case you want to make it a sweet snack. Add some blackberries, blueberries, strawberries and/or raspberries.

Black beans

iStock

“I’m a bean person,” Malkoff-Cohen says. You can add black beans to many dishes for more protein. They are also rich in fiber. Try black beans with egg whites, edamame with lime juice and red pepper flakes for a morning snack.

Babybel cheese

Shutterstock

“I love those,” Malkoff-Cohen says. “I keep them at work for snacks because they are easy to eat on the go.” Just one mini cheese, which is 20 grams, has 5 grams of protein, according to MyFitnessPal. It also contains 15 percent of the recommended daily amount of calcium.

Nuts

Shutterstock

Malkoff-Cohen says she always has plenty of nuts—almonds, cashews and walnuts— in her home. They are a good source of healthy fats. “You can flavor them anyway you want and make a crunchy snack,” she says. A handful of nuts with sea salt is one example. The nutritional wealth of sea salt includes vital minerals like sodium, potassium, calcium, magnesium, bromide, chloride, iron, copper, and zinc among other beneficial elements.

Dark chocolate

Shutterstock

Who would have thought that a healthy kind of food which is also delicious actually exists? The magic ingredient in chocolate is cocoa, which is packed with antioxidants and healthy chemicals that improve your overall health. Certain ingredients in chocolate can help boost a person’s metabolism, making the body work harder to burn off fat, according to research. Try dark chocolate covered almonds. 

Canned tuna

Shutterstock

This healthy, convenient canned food is known for its protein and Omega 3 fatty acids, an essential fatty acid that helps maintain the health of your cardiovascular system and brain. “It’s easy to make,” Malkoff-Cohen says. This is a budget-friendly food that can be prepared in multiple ways.  It’s also a fairly good source of Vitamin D.