3 Healthy and Delicious Ways to Help Spring Clean Your Diet
Photo: Vladislav Nosick/Getty Images
Shake out the drapes. Air out the house. Clean up the flower beds. And with spring in the air, why not tidy up your diet too? Here, we revisit registered dietitian and food blogger Abbey Sharp’s guide to eating cleaner and healthier.
Abbey Sharp is a registered dietitian, a food writer-blogger, host of her own YouTube channel, Abbey’s Kitchen, and she has also worked as a spokesperson for Clover Leaf. It’s the season for starting fresh and she shares her tips for a nutritional clean-up. And try her simple recipe upgrades for breakfast, lunch and dinner.
Foods to Ditch
“Cut back on foods with artificial or ultra-processed ingredients and an excessive amount of added sugars like sodas, syrup-based coffee drinks and ultra-processed cheese and meats.”
Foods to Add
“To boost your spring diet, I’m loving Ezekiel bread because it contains no added sugar and is loaded with sprouted whole grains. And, as always, make sure you’re getting in tons of fresh or frozen vegetables and fruit.”
Foods for Aging
“As we age, we should focus on getting calcium and vitamin D to help promote strong bones, which is why I love adding Greek yogurt to my oats and smoothies. We should also make sure we’re getting enough protein and heart-healthy fats like those in olive oil, nuts, fish and avocados.”
Recipes to Upgrade Every Meal of the Day
“By swapping a morning pastry, you’ll cut back on the processed sugar (that gives you a blood sugar crash!) and fat. Opting for these overnight oats with wholesome ingredients like oats and Greek yogurt, you’ll get some added fibre and protein, and feel fuller, longer. It’s a way better start to your day.”
Recipe: Cherry Overnight Oats
1 small ripe banana mashed
1 1/2 cups fresh or frozen red cherries
3/4 cup unsweetened almond milk
2/3 cup Greek yogurt
4 dates, minced
2 tsp ground flax seed
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract
1 cup gluten-free rolled oats
Mix all ingredients together in a small bowl. Pour mixture in a jar and refrigerate overnight.
“By swapping a typical sandwich for my open-faced avocado tuna salad sandwich, you’ll get rid of all those processed meats, cheese, white bread and full-fat ‘secret sauce.’ Instead, you’ll boost the lean protein from Clover Leaf All Natural tuna in water, fibre from the Ezekiel bread and monounsaturated fats from the avocado.”
Recipe: Quick & Clean Open-Faced Avocado Tuna Sandwich
1 can of Clover Leaf All-Natural Tuna (or another brand you have on hand)
1/4 ripe avocado, mashed
1 tsp lemon juice
1 tbsp Greek yogurt
2 slices Ezekiel bread
In a medium bowl, mash together the Clover Leaf All Natural Tuna and the avocado. Mix in lemon juice and yogurt. Serve on top of the bread slices and garnish with spinach, tomatoes, carrots and cucumber.
“We all crave those pizza nights! So instead of opting for a greasy slice of white dough with processed cheese and meats, making homemade pita pizza allows you to load up on high-quality ingredients while still crushing the craving. I like adding lots of fresh veggies, high-quality flavourful cheese and using a whole wheat pita for extra fibre.”
Recipe: DIY Individual Pita Pizza
1 whole grain pita
2 tbsp pizza tomato sauce
1 cup assorted vegetables
3 tbsp mozzarella, shredded
1 tbsp Parmesan, finely shredded
Preheat oven to 350 F. Add tomato sauce, vegetables and cheese to the whole grain pita. Bake in oven for 15 minutes.
A version of this story was originally published on May 14, 2018.