If you’re really busy, you can’t always get to the store to buy the kind of ideal fresh food that fits into your diet plan. Plus, sometimes when you do, you end up having a few of life’s distractions get in your way –then that fresh food you bought ends up going bad before you can eat it. That’s why it’s important to have a few healthy canned foods in the house that are both nutritious and tasty, allowing you to stick to your diet plan and worry less about what you are putting into your body.
When looking for healthy canned foods to keep in your pantry, it’s important to remember that you still have to maintain a nutritional balance. You will need to have protein, as well as a variety of fruits and vegetables to feed your body properly, but you must also watch out for the way certain canned foods are prepared. Some canned meats are processed and contain exorbitant amounts of sodium, which your body definitely doesn’t need. The following are 10 healthy canned foods – five in each category – that you shouldn’t be without.
1. Salmon — provides a great source of omega-3 fats, B-12, vitamin D and selenium.
2. Tuna – another source of omega-3 fats, but not quite as good for you as salmon. It also contains vitamins B-3, B-6 and B-12, as well as selenium.
3. Chicken Breast – high in protein and vitamin B-6
4. Beans (e.g.: Kidney and Garbanzo beans, and Navy Bean soup) – they provide a great source of both protein and fiber.
5. Nuts (almonds, walnuts, and cashews) – excellent protein and fiber source which also provides a much-needed dose of healthy fats.
Vegetables and Fruit
1. Low-Sodium Vegetable Soups (nutrients vary)
2. Pears – they are generous with their fiber content, as well as a great source of vitamin C
3. Stewed tomatoes (or any tomatoes, really) – these may be added to soups or to top your protein off with, or they may be eaten alone, but tomatoes are a great source of antioxidants and vitamins A and C
4. Spinach – as a dark green veggie option, spinach contains a healthy dose of vitamin A, but also contains much-needed iron, potassium vitamin B-6 and potassium.
5. Carrots – most people don’t think of canned carrots much, but they are a great source of vitamins A, C, and B-6. Plus, they also contain calcium, magnesium, and iron.
Remember, when looking for canned foods, check the sodium content and try to make sure any meat is packed in water, as opposed to oil. You will also want to double-check your fruits as well: check the labels to make sure they are packed in their own juices, as opposed to any thick syrup. If you keep these staples in your kitchen pantry, you will always have good nutrition on hand.
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