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Sunday, August 21, 2005

Easy Nutrition Boosts

Here are some easy ways to sneak extra vitamins, antioxidants, and other nutrients into your diet:
  • Use romaine or other lettuces instead of iceberg. Darker greens have more nutrients, so I use a baby lettuce mix from Trader Joe's instead of iceberg. Sometimes I add romaine for the crunch. You can also add baby spinach leaves. I use these substitutions not just in salads but when I need shredded lettuce for tacos or sandwiches.
  • Add some ground flax seed (also known as flax seed meal) to your cereal, yogurt or smoothies. Flax seed has lots of fiber and omega 3 fatty acids.
  • Switch to whole wheat pasta, which has more fiber and digests more slowly. I actually prefer the taste of whole wheat pasta now, because I think it's more flavorful. I recommend adding a generous amount of salt to the cooking liquid for the best flavor. Trader Joe's sells whole wheat spaghetti, fettucine, penne and rotini for 99 cents a pound.
  • For more extra fiber, substitute whole wheat pastry flour for all purpose flour in all of your baking and cooking. It can be a little hard to find, but I've seen it at both Whole Foods markets in my neighborhood.
  • Buy organic fruit and vegetables when possible, because they are higher in antioxidants than their conventionally grown counterparts.

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