Peanut butter is a best friend to our breakfast and snacks. In the morning, it goes great on top of a whole grain toast and in your oatmeal and smoothies. Between meals, peanut butter can be spread on fruits like apples and bananas and even on celery sticks (hello, ants on a log). But when you shop for peanut butter, there are a lot of options on the shelf. How do you know which one to choose?
What to Look for in Peanut Butter
There are three things to look for:
See below for comparisons of three brands: Laura Scudder's All Natural, Justin's Classic, and Skippy Creamy.
You'll find Laura Scudder's has the least amount of sugar and can be classified as natural since it contains only peanuts and salt. Justin's has the least amount of sodium but cannot be classified as natural since it contains palm oil. Skippy's has a few extra ingredients including added sugar, hydrogenated oil, and salt.
Although a bit of added sugar in peanut butter helps sweeten it up a bit, you'll be surprised with the results if you spread natural peanut butter on toast and fruits. It will be sweet already from the fruits you're spreading it on. So good!
Peanut butter contains protein and is a good source of monounsaturated fats and vitamin E.
If you happen to use any of these tips as you shop for peanut butter next time, tell me about your experience!
Jane the Dietitian
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So you're finally headed home. If you're anything like me, you're hungry and you want to have a nice dinner with little to no prepping, especially after a long day at work. A quick fix would be grabbing fast food or going out to a restaurant for a meal. But how often have you done that lately? What if I told you a quick grocery store haul and a 5-minute prep is all you need for tonight's dinner. AND there will be plenty of leftovers to give you dinner for the next few nights? Let's talk tacos.
Tacos are so versatile since you can pretty much put whatever you want in them. It's also a great way to clean out your fridge if you have leftover veggies and protein. Everyone seems to love tacos nowadays, but I honestly don't think they love tacos like us Texans love tacos.
Grocery Haul - GAME PLAN
Depending on how flexible your work schedule is, going to the grocery store during your lunch break or between 4:00-4:45pm would be most ideal since there will be less people at the store so you can get through the grocery line quicker. The plan is to purchase as much pre-made/pre-washed items as possible to save yourself time from prepping. IF you get off work at 5:00pm or later, here's your game plan:
Once you've survived the hustle and bustle of the grocery store and made it home safely, it's assembly time!
I wouldn't be a dietitian if I didn't get into the nutrient content of what you're eating, right? Let's talk about tortillas today.
There's a reason I suggested corn tortillas over flour tortillas. To keep it consistent, I compared only Mission brand tortillas. Here's a quick table:
Corn tortillas are amazingly low in sodium which is not the case with its flour counterpart. Getting pre-made foods at the grocery store is convenient, but sodium will most likely be high for those products. Using corn tortillas will help balance your sodium consumption during dinner.
Why is sodium a concern? Americans consume an average of 3,400 milligrams (mg) of sodium per day, but the daily recommendation of sodium is 2,300 mg which is equivalent to 1 teaspoon of salt. If you have high blood pressure (hypertension), it is recommended to keep sodium under 1,500 mg per day. Keeping sodium in check in your diet can help maintain your heart health and keep blood pressure in check.
With the corn tortilla's additional benefits of lower calories, fat, and carbohydrates, you're free to load on heart-healthy fats from the avocado in the guacamole, enjoy the antioxidant power of lycopene found in the salsa's tomatoes, and feel fullness from the chicken. If you added corn or black beans to them, you're getting some good fiber in which will help with your digestion and promote a healthy gut!
Jane the Dietitian
If you enjoyed this post, please follow me on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. Want to talk? Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
My husband and I have been together for almost 8 years now. Overtime, we've become one (sounds cheesy, I know). And as one, we can definitively say we love chicken wings. Like really love chicken wings. In our younger years before cooking and adulting, we heated up precooked, frozen wings. We then evolved to baking them from scratch in the oven. Now we air-fry them since it gives us crispy wings without added oils!
I'm not going to preach what you shouldn't eat at the Super Bowl gathering but just suggest what you can add to your plate or bowl to give your body some extra TLC. Two ways to give your body love at a Super Bowl party is to mix in buffalo cauliflower "wings" with regular wings and provide black bean dip for your chips.
Cauliflower is a rich source of potassium which helps regulate your blood pressure. So while you're eating hot dogs, nachos, and pizza, your salt consumption will increase quickly. Adding foods like cauliflower "wings" introduces potassium which helps counterbalance your sodium intake. It's also a good source of insoluble fiber. So while you're jumping up and down to cheer on your favorite team tomorrow, the fiber will be working hard to move your food through your digestive tract.
Black beans are a legume high in soluble fiber which makes a good balance to any cholesterol-rich foods like cheeseburgers and deviled eggs. The fiber will bind to the cholesterol and reduce the amount of cholesterol floating in your bloodstream. Wonderful!
If making cauliflower wings and black bean dip is too much of a hassle or you're wanting more nutrition power on game day, give that lonely veggie plate some attention. Celery, carrots, and broccoli are all natural sources of potassium and fiber. Your body will thank you!
Happy Game Day!
Jane the Dietitian
If you enjoyed this post, please follow me on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. Want to talk to me? Email me at email@example.com.
Jane Pelcher, RDN
I am a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist focused on helping everyone love nutrition through cooking! My blogs provide new home cooks with basic cooking skills and grocery shopping tips. Most importantly, I strive to teach the nutrition behind the foods you cook to help you understand how specific foods can better your health and prevent chronic diseases. I hope you embark on this journey with me!