Enjoy Hispanic Food the Healthy Way

healthy hispanic food

We love Latino foods here at Cook For Your Life, but they are not always the healthiest. Although that initial bite of a burrito can be satisfying, that all quickly goes away once your body begins to crash from overly greasy, heavy foods.  But don’t be discouraged! You can still enjoy your favorite dishes with simple changes to help harmonize you and your belly’s well being.

In general, when we think about Latin American cuisine, rice, beef and beans are the major three components. They’re also easy fixes! White or yellow rice can be replaced with brown rice or quinoa. Contrary to refined grains, quinoa provides high protein content and is a great source for vitamins and minerals. We subbed rice for quinoa in this burrito to show you how delicious it is- check it out! 

Beans are part of the legume family and a rich in total and soluble fiber as well as polyphenols which are high in antioxidants. The fact that they’re a major staple works in our favor. They can be used as a fillers for empanadas and simple sides and salads. Beef can also be replaced with leaner options. The American Institute of Cancer Research has reported that high levels of red meat increase the risk of colorectal cancer.  To help you cut down, ground beef can be replaced with free range ground chicken or turkey and mixed with lentils or beans and spices to create a more dynamic taste. Yes, free range poultry might cost you a couple extra bucks, but it’ll be worth it in the long run!

Instead of stuffing corn tortillas with with endless amounts of temporary fillers try using mother nature’s seasonal gifts. With fall just arriving, butternut squash and cauliflower are great alternatives for taco dishes. CFYL’s  Roasted Fall Veggie Vegan tacos provide delicious and savory alternatives to a traditional meal. You can also keep in mind all things avocado! Avocados contain monounsaturated fatty acids, essential nutrients and phytochemicals. Everybody enjoys a good guacamole dip on football Sundays but this ‘superfood’ can be used for so much more! Instead of the classic latin american breakfast composed of a cup of coffee and pan dulce or sweet bread, switching over to a green smoothie can help start you day on the right foot. An avocado and pineapple smoothie is quick and easy and tastes delicious! This thick  creamy smoothie also comes to great use after radiation therapy when swallowing becomes difficult. Considering these minor changes can aid in prevention and during treatment.

To make it even easier for you to enjoy your favorite Latino recipes the healthy way, we’ve created a whole dishes of menu that do the body good without compromising on flavor-check it out here!

Registered Dietitian Approved

There are many misconceptions about nutrition and cancer in widespread media. By using current scientific literature, plus recommendations of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, the American Institute for Cancer Research, the National Cancer Institute, and the American Cancer Society, our Registered Dietitian, Kate Ueland, MS, RD, and our team of editors work to help our readers discern truth from myth.

The statements on this blog are not intended to diagnose, treat, or cure any disease. Always consult your physician or registered dietitian for specific medical advice.

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