6 Kitchen Hacks for a Healthier You

Healthy Eating Monday, March 10, 2014 Written by

Life revolves around the kitchen. We cook there, we snack there, we connect with friends and family and we all love a nice home-cooked meal. But there are a few things we can do to make sure this cherished place is organized for a healthy lifestyle. Try our six easy hacks to transform your kitchen.

1. Re-organize the fridge. The first place we go when we’re hungry is the fridge. We open the door, scan the options and grab the first thing that looks good. Re-organize your fridge to make sure healthy options are the first thing you see. Move vegetables and fruit outside from the bottom drawer to eye level, and stock the top row with healthy snacks like low-fat yogurt, hummus and roasted turkey slices.
Organize
2. Use your freezer. When you’re doing your kitchen purge, don’t forget the freezer! You likely have things hiding in the back from years ago. Once you have more space than you ever thought possible, start filling it with healthy leftovers. While you’re cooking during the week, make a few portions extra and freeze them for meals down the line when you don’t have time to cook up a nutritious meal. Follow these tips to make sure you freeze properly.

3. Buy smaller dishes. Forget measuring your morning cereal. Portion control is easy if you know exactly what your dishes hold. Either purchase smaller bowls and plates, or take the time to measure portion sizes out so that you know what a single portion really looks like in your dishware. You’ll be much less likely to overeat. Northwest native Susan Levy of the Well-Fed Heart is a big fan of small changes like these. Learn more tips in her 4-minute Kitchen Makeover series.
Smaller-Plates
4. Do a purge. I bet if you looked through your condiments or sifted through your pantry, you would find dozens of expired goods. Canned beans from two years ago? Ketchup that’s been in the fridge for a year? Toss anything that looks remotely questionable and if you’re still not sure, you can look up expiration dates on Still Tasty.

5. Put healthy snacks out in the open. We’ve all passed by the tray of doughnuts in our office kitchen. Let’s face it, it’s almost impossible to resist enticing sweets, so don’t set yourself up for a sugar coma in your own home too. Our bodies are wired to want what’s in front of us, so keep yourself in check by putting healthy snacks out in the open. Options like fresh fruit, unsalted nuts and chopped veggies should be easily accessible when hunger strikes.
Fruits
6. Meal plan for the week on Sundays. Save money, time and calories by planning your meals for the week every Sunday. You’ll know exactly what you need to buy at the grocery store (or your Northwest farmers market) and you’ll know exactly what you’re cooking when you’re home for the night. It’s the easiest way to decrease stress in the kitchen while staying healthy all week long.
Meal-Planning
Do you have any kitchen hacks that you use to stay healthy? We’d love to hear about them in the comments below.