You’ve tagged your favourite healthy recipes, are excited about embracing a more nutritious way of living, and now, Happies, it’s time to hit the shops and fill your pantry with more body-friendly staples than Gwyneth Paltrow’s kitchen.
To make the entire process even easier, I thought I’d give you a shopping list of some of my favourite oils, sauces, noodles and salts, so that you can cut out and keep for your next visit to the health food aisle of your grocery store. Hooray!
1. A Good Cooking Oil
I wanted to update this particular point because there are so many mixed reviews about oils, and cooking oils, and what’s right for you. So, rather than focus on one, I wanted to delve deeper into a few of the most popular.
Firstly, olive oil is a great option for cooking with. My dad is Turkish and I’ve grown up on the stuff, but personally I prefer to buy the organic cold pressed stuff and pour it over salads etc raw, rather than cook with it.
Secondly, coconut oil is an absolute WINNER when it comes to cooking. Its flavour is strong though, so I find it better for Asian and Indian dishes, rather than, say, Italian.
And finally, we come to the most controversial oil of the three – Grapeseed oil. Known for its ability to withstand serious heat, grapeseed oil has been high-fived for its ability to promote heart health, improve your skin, and not burn your food due to its high smoking point. That said, others believe that due to grapeseed being a polyunsaturated fat, it should never be exposed to heat as it can cause inflammation and irritation in your body. Some say it’s fine, others say it’s not. I think if you’re going to use it, stick to the purest, most unrefined form, keep it in the fridge, and use it sparingly.
2. Raw Apple Cider Vinegar
I recommend the brand ‘Bragg’, as it uses 100% organic apples, is unfiltered, unpasturized, untreated, and generally awesome to use in everything from sauces, to marinades, to salad dressings. While vinegars are acidic, apple cider vinegar actually has an alkalizing affect on the body. BONUS POINTS! Plus, this stuff has been linked to helping improve everything from skin, to weight loss, to high cholesterol. GET IT IMMEDIATELY.
3. Organic Nama Shoyu
We eat a lot of Asian inspired food in our house. Gorgeous stir fries, packed with every vegetable under the sun, as well as sashimi, sushi, Japanese-inspired salmon with buckwheat soba noodles and Asian greens. The common thread? This unpasterized soya sauce that is subtle in flavour but bloody brilliant on taste. Bring it!
4. Buckwheat Soba Noodles
Speaking of buckwheat soba noodles, I cannot recommend these highly enough. Replace your refined white rice noodles with these babies and watch your tastebuds squeal with delight. In fact, I had them for lunch today. Yumyumyumyum! Try to get the 100% buckwheat version, especially if you’re avoiding, or cutting down on your gluten intake.
5. Himalayan Rock Salt
Forget that crappy table salt you may have in your cupboard, you may as well be eating poison. Salt is an essential part of your diet, but when health experts refer to salt and minerals, they’re not talking about the refined white stuff in a plastic pouch. Oh no, Happies, they’re talking about the good stuff. I personally am a fan of Himalayan Rock Salt, as it’s a great way to regulate water content in your body, alkalize your system, absorb nutrients, support your libido, AND prevent muscle cramps, to name just a few. Celtic Sea Salt is also pretty good. Whatever you do, just buy the good stuff. That is all.