There are several steps you can take to make your kitchen more DASH-friendly. The first step is to have the right foods on hand. The DASH Diet Action Plan book has a wonderful plan for how to stock your cupboards and fridge to make it easy to stay on track.
The George Foreman grills have become classics for quick, low-fat cooking.
The new models have removable cooking plates to make it easier to clean. These
grills are appliances that no kitchen should be without.
Toaster ovens are great for reheating foods that are supposed to stay crisp
or meat that you do not want to be overcooked by microwaving. They are also
great for making smaller quantities for people preparing meals for one or two.
No need to heat up your large oven. You may want to consider purchasing one that
will automatically shut off, since it is easy to forget. Another interesting
feature to consider is convection cooking. This sears the outside of foods, and
results in more even cooking.
Don't forget, microwave ovens are useful for more than just popcorn. They are
the best for cooking small quantities of frozen or fresh
vegetables. You don't add water which can result in the loss of key nutrients
and minimizing cooking time helps to preserve heat-sensitive vitamins.
Blenders can be very useful for pureeing vegetables to sneak into sauces or
homemade soups. I tend to not be a big supporter of smoothies, since they liquify fruits which can cause blood sugar to soar. Better to have the milk and
fruit as a snack than to blend them into a smoothie. Many people with high blood
pressure also have insulin resistance which makes them more likely to store
sugar as belly fat. For the same reason, I am not a fan of juicing. Why throw
away the fiber which is a key benefit of fruits and vegetables? One of the big
benefits of fruits and vegetables for supporting weight loss, is that they are
filling. Having foods that are filling makes it easier to avoid overeating. I do
like the hand blenders for making hot chocolate with unsweetened cocoa powder,
skim milk, and Splenda« and for making very smooth gravy.
Food processors are great for helping you cut up fresh fruits and vegetables.
Or if you want to do it by hand, mandolines or V-slicers can be helpful.
Digital kitchen scales help you learn to serve appropriate serving sizes.
Portion-distortion has taken over restaurant meals, home meals, and even
cookbook portions. Don't super-size your body, it isn't a health-wise bargain.
The pocket-sized version might be handy for measuring those restaurant portions.
Digital thermometers help to be sure that meats and poultry are cooked to the
proper temperature, and that leftovers are thoroughly cooked (at least to 165║F).
Finally, great cookbooks will give you lots of ideas to help you avoid