Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Simple Changes -- Salad Greens and Seasonings

I have begun compiling a "Simple Changes" topic over the last month. My idea here is to offer some simple things that you and your family can do to improve your health. It is easy to become overwhelmed when embarking on a new health journey. Take Baby Steps! Keep moving forward and you will find your self crossing even the bigger hurdles... only do move forward. These "Simple Changes" are geared to help you make progress. Commit to each one and you'll look back amazed at how far you have come by taking baby steps. (For my previous Simple Changes, click here.)

The simplest first: Swap the whitish iceberg lettuce for darker salad greens. The dark green lettuces have a significantly higher nutrient content, so look for romaine, green leaf, red leaf, mixed baby greens or baby spinach. Some families I know even add Swiss Chard to their dinner salads, but it lacks a sweetness that other lettuces have so it can't replace lettuce entirely. Tossing in a few chard leaves among lettuces is a great way to add vitamins, calcium, iron and tons of other minerals.

Next simple change: Substitute real spices for seasoning packages that contain MSG and other unwanted ingredients. For a complete list of seasoning substitutions, visit this site. The packet I would use most would be for Mexican dishes. For Taco Seasoning, I use:
  • 2 tsp. chili powder
  • 2 tsp. sea salt
  • 1 tsp. garlic powder
  • 1 tsp. ground cumin
  • a pinch of cayenne, unless you want it hot, in which case you can add 1/2 tsp.

I would love to hear your substitution tips! Please comment to share your healthy ideas with us... Thanks!


Andrea Manor said...

Great seasoning website, thanks. After being directed to the vitamix videos from your green smoothie post, I saw a "Balsamic Citrus Dressing" video and recipe. I've since started making my own salad dressings-delicious! It's very expensive to buy low sugar healthy dressings.

Noel said...

the homemade taco seasoning is SOOOO much better than the packaged! I use lots of cumin in mine :)

Is adobo a natural seasoning or a compilation w/ msg ???? I wonder...

Amy Ellen said...

Hi Noel,

I don't know that all adobo sauces would have MSG, but I am assuming some might. It is a compilation of seasonings, garlic and vinegar... so I'm sure there is a good way to do it and a cheap way. What does the label say? Are you aware of the "other names" for MSG?

Hope this helps!
Amy Ellen

Xazmin said...

I HATE iceburg lettuce...no flavor little nutrients!

I use romain lettuce and spinach. Then I like to top it with some feta cheese crumbles, almonds and raisins!

I'm going to check out your spice substitutions! I usually don't use packets...but I'm kinda lazy, so I use alot of blends...I'll have to check their ingredients list for MSG!