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Spring diet: Give your kitchen a healthy makeover

Jessica Padykula is a freelance writer and editor in Toronto, Canada covering a wide range of  topics for several online lifestyle publications. She is a regular contributor for SheKnows, covering travel, style, relationships, health and...

Put your kitchen on a diet

Spring cleaning your home usually means getting out the mop and sponges for a serious seasonal scrub-down, but spring is also the perfect time to clean out your pantry and fridge to make room for more nutritious, body-boosting foods. SheKnows.com got some insight from Heidi Skolnik, MS, CDN, FACSM, about how to give your kitchen a healthy makeover for spring.

8Woman eating popcorn Don't go hungry

Just because the chips have to go doesn't mean you have to say goodbye to snacks. Healthy snacks help contribute to overall nutrient intake for the day, Skolnik explains. "They help bridge the between-meal hunger gap and allow you to enter a meal ready to savor and enjoy without eating so fast you miss the experience." She shares some of her favorites:

  • Berries with a chocolate drizzle
  • Apple slices with some honey on top
  • Popcorn
  • Greek yogurt with a sprinkle of Grape-nuts (and berries) or honey
  • Peanut or almond butter on a slice of fruit or corn cake
  • Hot cocoa made from low-fat milk and real chocolate
  • Apple with 1 oz. of cheese

9Restock your kitchen with the healthiest essentials

If you were to start from scratch with a totally bare pantry and fridge, Skolnik suggests the following 10 essentials that will start your kitchen off on a healthy high note:

  • Frozen berries
  • Lean meat in individual portions, labeled and frozen
  • Variety of nuts
  • Brown rice
  • Fresh/frozen vegetables
  • Olive oil
  • Spices
  • Canned beans
  • Canned salmon
  • Parmesan cheese (hard cheeses are lower in calories)
  • Low-fat milk
  • Yogurt
  • Oatmeal
  • Eggs

10Keep your body healthfully fueled

Along with the above list, Skolnik advises everyone to make a concerted effort to have a fruit and/or vegetable, protein and/or dairy, a whole grain and a healthy fat at each meal. "By doing this you will be able to keep tissue levels saturated with nutrients, for optimum mood, focus and satiety," she explains. Here's to a clean – and healthy – kitchen this spring!

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