February is Black History Month.
Traditional southern cooking, or soul food is delicious but can be high in fat, salt, and sugar. But there are many ways to honor African American heritage with healthier food choices that are also comforting. When planning your meals, choose colorful whole plant foods. Incorporate beans, fruits, whole grains, and vegetables that are rich in nutrients and low in unhealthy fats. Don’t forget colorful spices like paprika, nutmeg, cinnamon, and ginger. These anti-inflammatory, nutrient-dense foods prepared in healthy ways help to fight disease like diabetes, high blood pressure, and heart disease.
Some meal ideas are as follows:
- Jamaican Jerk Chicken
- Spicy Southern Barbecued Chicken with Cornbread, Caribbean Pink Beans and a mixed salad
- Smokey Ham and Bean
- Smothered Greens made with low sodium and fat
- Red Beans and Rice also makes a great vegetarian dish and is packed with fiber and protein
Written by Victoria Luera, Lone Star Circle of Care Registered Dietitian. Submitted by Ashley Wild