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Spring Cleaning: What's in Your Pantry?

Posted on April 11 2013

What do you think of when you hear the word, Spring? Spring Sales, Spring Break, Spring Bride… but it has come to be synonymous with the phrase,Spring Cleaning.  Whether or not you and your family actively participate in this American Ritual, here are some tips to Spring-Cleaning out your pantry and replacing the no-so-healthy foods with better-for-you ones*:

Throw away...
Canned Fruits in Syrup
Replace with...
Fruit Cups in its own juice
Better replacement...
Fresh Fruits
Reason: Canned Fruits in Syrup is higher in sugar content, and the can containers are lined with the harmful chemical, BPA (Bisphenol A). Although many the plastic cups also contain BPA, Dole Fruit Cups do not. NOTE: Plastic products with recycle code “7” contain the highest amount of BPA.
Throw away...
Canned Vegetables with more than 300 mg of Sodium per serving
Replace with...
Canned Vegetables without added sodium
Better replacement...
Fresh Vegetables
Reason: USDA recommends 1,500 mg of sodium per day. A cup of canned vegetables can contain up to 730 mg! Rinsing canned vegetables with water further eliminates sodium content. When removing vegetables out of cans, use wooden spoons instead of metal ones, as the BPA lining in cans is easily leached by scraping metal-to-metal.
Throw away...
Canned Soups with more than 300 mg of Sodium per serving
Replace with...
Canned Soups with Reduced Sodium (less than 300 mg) per serving
Better replacement...
Homemade Soups using low-sodium chicken/vegetable broth and fresh vegetables
Reason: With USDA recommendation being 1,500 mg of sodium per day, having a cup of canned soup can calculate at up to 650 mg which is over 40% of the daily recommendation!
Throw away...
Refined (White) Sugar
Replace with...
Turbinado Sugar (Sugar in the Raw)
Better replacement...
Natural Sweeteners, such as Stevia, Agave Nectar or Honey
Reason: Refined sugar raises the insulin level which weakens the immune system. In addition, because it contains no vitamins or minerals, refined sugar draws the vitamins or minerals from the body’s reserve in order to metabolize it. Although turbinado sugar has fewer calories per cup than refined sugar (144 calories vs. 194 calories) and contains trace amounts of minerals, it raises the insulin level in the same way that refined sugar does.
Throw away...
Microwaveable Popcorn
Replace with...
Popping Corn and Air-pop Popcorn Maker
Better replacement...
N/A
Reason: According to a report from FDA, a chemical coating used in microwave popcorn bags breaks down into a substance called perfluorooctanoic (PFOA) when heated. PFOA has been identified as a carcinogen by the EPA.
Throw away...
Bleached Flour
Replace with...
Whole Wheat Flour, Whole Oat, Whole Rye, etc.
Better replacement...
Sprouted grain bread, such as Ezekiel Bread (found in most grocery store in the refrigerated aisles)
Reason: Bleached flour is bleached with a chemical known as alloxan which destroys the beta cells of the pancreas. Furthermore, the chemically-bleaching process strips the flour of any nutritional value.
Throw away...
Sodas/Soft Drinks
Replace with...
Sodas sweetened with Stevia or Agave Nectar
Better replacement...
Sparkling Waters
Reason: The sugar and calories from sodas contribute to weight-gain, obesity, spike in blood-sugar and insulin (which can cause insulin resistance), and ultimately, increased risk of stroke, heart disease, diabetes, obesity, and cancer. Soda is also known to increase symptoms of Acid-Reflux Disease and Ulcers.
Throw away...
Cookies
Replace with...
Fig Newtons / Fig Bars
Better replacement...
Fruits and Unsalted Nuts
Reason: Cookies contain many ingredients unfavorable to your health, such as bleached flour, refined sugar, excessive amounts of calories which impact the health in many ways as described in above items.
Throw away...
Potato Chips
Replace with...
Pop Chips
Better replacement...
Crunchy fruits and vegetables, such as apple slices, carrots, bell peppers and celery
Reason: Potato chips are full of empty calories, with half of the calories deriving from fat. Additionally, potato chips tend to contain high sodium content.

*Disclaimer: This list applies to individuals with no known food allergies or gluten intolerance.

Combine a “spring-cleaned” pantry and a consistent fitness regimen, your body and energy level will be beach-ready in no time!

 

guest blogger
Jheni Solis,Sarvanga Fitness
Sarvanga Fitness is a “whole-body” fitness company based out of Dallas, , TX providing group and individual fitness instructions in Zumba®,PiYo™, Yoga, Meditation and other fitness formats.
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