The Bariatric Kitchen Makeover
Smart Substitutions that Satisfy!!
by Antonia Pinckney, RD, CDE, RN
The New Year is a time for many new beginnings. Why not start the season anew by “making over” your pantry, refrigerator, and freezer ?
You’ve heard the guidelines before – protein, calorie free beverages, lots of fruits and veggies, and whole grains. Now it’s time to apply these principles to your home environment, and do an honest assessment of your “local” food supply.
No Sugary Drinks Here!
Let’s start with your food cupboard or pantry. Go ahead, open those doors. Are there any bottled or canned beverages such as fruit drinks, juices, sugary drink mixes, (iced tea, lemonade powders, chocolate milk additives) or carbonated beverages? Either put these in a bin for donating or if used by other family members, relegate them to a separate side of the closet. Take out your shopping list and plan on replacing them with sugar free drink mixes.
Good Grains Only Please!
Next target your grain products, looking for refined grains. Crackers, cookies, pretzels, cereals, and breads with less than 3 grams of fiber per serving often spell trouble for bariatric eating plans. Get some suggestions for their whole grain counterparts from your dietitian and support group members, or spend some time searching in the supermarket or health food store.
Goodbye Full-Fat Dairy!
Now move on to your refrigerator. Toss the full fat dairy products, including milk and cheese, and sugary fruit at the bottom yogurt. Enter 1% or fat free milk, low fat cheese and light yogurt, (typically with less than 12 grams of sugar per serving) onto your list. Replace regular mayonnaise, and salad dressing with light and fat free versions.
Even Some Frozen Foods Have To Go!
In your freezer watch out for high calorie frozen entrees like fried chicken and pizza. Convenient entrée items such as grilled chicken strips, , turkey meatballs, and veggie patties serve as the main course to a quick healthy meal. Remove frozen vegetables that are packaged in cream sauce. Replace regular ground beef with the leaner 93% version .
See what other items you can replace by playing detective in your kitchen. After all, healthy eating begins at home.