By Angela Bekiaris
When it comes to nutrition and fitness, we often turn to Australian fitness guru Kayla Itsines. Her BBG programme has proven successful, and it’s very simple really — eat clean, train hard and enjoy what you’re doing. Kayla shares some pantry essentials with us for those quick and easy meals.
1. Quinoa: You should always have some quinoa in the pantry, says Kyla, adding that you’ll never go hungry if you do. Because you can use the ingredient for so many different snacks and meals — like adding it to a smoothie, making a porridge or even use it to make burger patties — you will see that snacking on quinoa will save you time and calories.
2. Tuna: We all know tuna is a healthy alternative which is why it’s usually one of the main items on any diet. For Kayla, there’s always tuna at home. “Not only is it a great post-workout snack, tuna is also a source of omega-3 fatty acids, which is important for heart health,” says the fitness queen.
3. Wraps: Sometimes we just really feel like a sandwich but we know we shouldn’t be eating the bread. Wraps are the answer — they’re easy to make and can be so filing when they’re loaded with healthy veggies and protein. Hey, you can even add the tuna to your wrap and kill two birds with one stone.
4. Olive Oil: “It’s definitely a pantry essential,” explains Kayla, who adds that you can use it for adding flavour to meals.” She also explains, “Olive oil contains a substance called oleic acid, which can help reduce inflammation.”
5. Lemons: Just like oil, lemon can be added to a variety of dishes to give flavour. “Fresh lemon juice is fantastic for flavouring chicken or fish, while some lemon zest can add depth to marinades, salads or grains,” she says.
Don’t Cut Out Food Groups
WHILE some swear by this, experts say you really shouldn’t cut any food group out of your diet. Eating everything in moderation is key. Cutting out entire food groups can deprive the body of essential nutrients it yearns for, explain experts, who add that, while cutting out large food groups can dramatically cut calories and lead to weight loss, weight tends to return once such foods are reincorporated into the diet.
According to the US Department of Agriculture’s Choose My Plate, you should be making healthy food and beverage choices from the following food groups. Bistomd.com shares some food groups and their matching roles:
1. Grains are valuable for their fibre and B vitamin content. Without each, digestive health and efficient energy use may be compromised.
2. Fruits contain high amounts of fibre too — the vibrancy and colour offer powerful antioxidants that protect the body against damage.
3. Vegetables are actually considered a carbohydrate source and supply the body with fibre, vitamins and minerals.
4. Lean proteins offer the body sustained or growing muscle mass to keep it strong.
5. Dairy is good for you; when naturally or minimally-processed, the well-balanced macronutrients and the high calcium and vitamin D content (when fortified) make dairy products exceptionally beneficial.
Pantry Essentials For Quick And Easy Meals
By Angela Bekiaris