Rice is a food staple in many cultures and communities throughout the world. But, daily consumption of white rice is associated with an increased risk of developing Type 2 Diabetes, a serious but preventable lifestyle disease.
But what about those of you who eat bread and potatoes rather than rice as your major dietary starch? Similar findings would probably result in studies comparing whole wheat bread to white bread or unpeeled potatoes to peeled potatoes. So eat "Whole and Brown” as the healthier choice.
One day, while chopping ingredients for a vegetable rice pilaf, my growing pile of vegetable scraps caused me to pause. Should I just throw these scraps into the garbage? Or, could they be repurposed?
It’s easy to get stuck in that single-use mindset of mindlessly tossing things into the garbage without considering ways to repurpose them. Contemplating my options, I considered starting a composting pile. Then, I realized there was a simple step in the middle that was easy, healthy, and tasty to do - make vegetable stock!
I put my spent vegetables into a pot of water with herbs and some other now sorry-looking vegetables my overzealous eyes had fancied while shopping the week before. Onions, mushrooms, salt, peppercorns, allspice berries, rosemary, leeks, sage, thyme, parsley, and garlic are also wonderful additions.
There is really no right or wrong way to make stock. But, using vegetables already found in your kitchen is a great way to minimize food waste, save food costs, and make a tasty, healthy broth. In comparison, store-bought stocks cost much more, are loaded with preservatives, have too much salt, and usually don’t live up to the picture on the label!
After stock has cooled, pour into ice cube trays, containers, or plastic bags. Freeze for later use or refrigerate if you plan on using it that week. This stock investment will yield you a fortune of flavor and healthfulness! Last but not least, those spent veggies are now ready for your compost heap - yielding even greater dividends on your investment into a happy and healthy lifestyle!
Additional tips: Before boiling the stock, you can develop more complex flavor by sweating the vegetables in a frying pan with a bit of salt and olive oil, or by roasting or grilling them. Don’t limit yourself to veggies. Try making stock with your spent beef bones, fish, shellfish or chicken carcasses. Broths are a great base for soup, bisque, stew, stuffing, brine, marinades, risotto, rice, pilaf, sauces, quinoa, braising, puree, dressing, pasta, gravies and pet food too.
Enjoy your stock investment!
Hi - I’m Jessica Ferrell and I’m excited to be joining the community of NativeFit healthy lifestyle bloggers. My passion is School Gardens. The desire to create a cultural shift towards a love of healthy eating drew me to the powerful potential of school gardens. With my studies in nutrition and a love of teaching, the garden as a classroom is an easy fit for me to reach students and the broader school community.
Children today face higher rates of obesity, diabetes type 2, and anxiety. The school garden provides an impactful place in the school day where children can learn the skills and knowledge needed to prevent those lifestyle diseases.
The garden is also an important tool for meeting academic standards through experiential learning, creates a sense of place and connection to the environment, and fosters a lifetime love of healthy eating. School gardens are important. Join me in bringing the power of school gardens to children everywhere!
School Garden Educator & Community Liaison
As an athlete, I know how important it is to find a healthy diet that fits each of our bodies' needs. For me, the right diet is a vegetarian diet. It’s easy to find ways to replace meat with other protein sources such as legumes and nuts.
To successfully create that healthy diet that best fits one’s individual needs, it is important to figure out what food we want to change, then replace the good nutrients in that food with the same nutrients from a different food source.
High School Athlete
Change can be hard – especially when it involves adopting healthy new behaviors. How often have we channeled our inner warrior willpower, only to cave to temptation and eat that candy bar we swore off, stay up too late, or skip our workout again?
So hooray for Behavior Change Strategies! These strategies are great because used with willpower, they help make healthy habits stick. Behavior change strategies work because they target unhealthy behaviors, motivate change, and help us develop sustainable new habits. These strategies are always available to use once we understand them. And, these strategies all start with change in motivation - which means that when we starting using them, we'll be making cool healthy changes inside our minds well before anyone sees our cool healthy outside behavior changes!
Maile Jachowski, MD
My name is Mary Anna Weklar and I’ll be joining NativeFit as a contributor to its Healthy Lifestyle Blog space. I hope that together, we can explore simple, easy ways to bring positive lifestyle practices into our day to day lives.
An integrated approach to healthy living has the opportunity to heal and renew us as individuals, communities and beyond! But, there is such an explosion of new information about health and lifestyle, that it can be incredibly overwhelming and confusing to figure out. So, here are some basic guidelines I believe can help build a strong foundation for healthy living:
Incorporating these 7 simple practices into my life helps me live a positive lifestyle. I’ve enjoyed sharing them with you and I challenge you, in the spirit of healthiness, to try them out for yourself. I think you’ll find that adopting these 7 positive lifestyle practices can be fun, simple, and easier than you think!
So how about making a healthy meal with friends or planning a group walk, anyone? Enjoy!
My name is Olivia Ross and I am an athlete in high school. Over the years I have learned that to perform our best, we need to live healthy lives and develop healthy habits. How we develop healthy habits is unique to each of us, but I think it’s really important to start learning these habits when we’re young – so thanks, mom and dad! Healthy parents mean healthy kids. The cool thing is - it's never too late to start making our lives better through healthy change.
Healthy living helps me as an athlete and a person because it surrounds me with people that bring out the best of me, it guides me to eat healthy foods that help me perform better, and it helps me understand the importance of getting a good night’s sleep.
A healthy lifestyle involves making choices that help us become better people. These choices have a ripple effect that betters our community and the friends and family around us. Having a healthy lifestyle empowers us to become our best version of ourselves, and that is ideal for an athlete. My healthy choices help me perform better. Performing better inspires me to be a bigger part of the sport, and being a bigger part of the sport is so fun and fulfilling to me and the people around me. I guess what I’m saying is healthy living helps us be the best we can be!
Welcome to our NativeFit blog – a space we invite you to visit often. We hope that all of our healthy lifestyle topics – covering everything from exercise, nutrition, healthy cooking, sleep, stress reduction, and happiness to healthy hobbies, behavior change strategies, health psychology, community initiatives and more – will inspire and empower you to develop the skills, habits, and strengths needed to live a healthy life.
NativeFit comes from a belief that we are all born to be healthy and happy, that we are all born to be fit. Based in science, and recognizing that everyone is unique and that one solution does not fit all, NativeFit uses the power of community to engage, inform, and support people of all ages in healthy living. Please join our NativeFit Blog Community as we learn about, practice, and develop the knowledge, skills, and habits needed to live long, healthy, vibrant lives.
Born to be healthy, happy & fit…NativeFit!
Dr. Maile Jachowski, M.D.