From Fitness & Power
Whether you’re trying to build muscle or burn fat, a good nutrition plan is essential to get results. But, no matter how great the importance of a sound diet may be, it does not mean that your meals have to be bland or with unfavorable flavor. When trying to eat healthy, people often eat the same food day after day. Hence the misconception that healthy diet is boring and bland.
There is a world of possibilities for making your food taste good and be healthy at the same time. Open up your mind and start exploring. You’ll soon find out that you can add variety to your meals, making them more enjoyable. In turn, this will make it easier for you to follow the diet. We offer you an insight of some the best ways for preparing a tasty, yet wholesome bodybuilding meals, a true opposite to the stereotypes you are used to.
1. SLOW COOKERS
Use a slow cooker. This may come as a surprise, but slow cookers allow you to cook large amounts of tasty meals in one go, preparing food for several days. It is easy, and it does not take to be a chef to cook it. Just throw in all the ingredients you need, set the temperature, and you have it all done in the evening.
Put a couple of pounds of chicken breasts in the cooker. Pour over liquid and seasoning. Add frozen vegetables at your choice. Don’t be modest. In the end, cut up several potatoes, carrots or add rice. With everything in, replace the lid and turn on the slow cooker. Simple and delicious.
2. RICE COOKERS
Rice is most probably one of the steadier fixtures in a healthy diet. Yet, rice cooking, although a simple task in its core, can prove as time consuming on a daily basis. Instead of spending hours guarding the rice so that it won’t be over-cooked, consider getting a rice cooker. This simple appliance will help you in cooking large quantities of rice, without requiring your presence.
Rice cookers work just as the slow cookers. Just set them, and expect perfectly cooked rice every single time. In addition, it can also serve for steaming the vegetables. It also opens a possibility for adding flavors to your rice meal without adding too much calories. Instead of water, use chicken, beef or vegetable stock. Two cups of stock equals just 10 additional calories.
Fresh herbs can do wonders for the taste. They can turn terrible food to fantastic in no time, and are perfect if you want to avoid adding sauces to improve the flavor. Of course, there are always the dried herbs, that can instantly enhance the flavor, yet you’ll never coax out the same intensity as with the fresh herbs. The only thing you need to know is when to add them, and what is the difference between hard herbs and soft.
The hard varieties are characterized by their thick stems and include such herbs as rosemary, thyme, and oregano. When using them, make sure to add them early. Soft, logically, have soft stems. This family includes dill, tarragon, basil, cilantro, and parsley. They are added later in the cooking process to avoid ruining their delicate flavors.
4. MARINATING THE MEAT
Using marinate is a fantastic for making your meat taste great. It also keeps it from drying. However, marinating the meat is a lengthy process which requires advance planning. It takes from 12 hours up to two days to marinate your food. However, the marinating process can be significantly sped up by simple vacuum sealing of the meat.
Removing the air from the container forces marinate to penetrate the meat, as opposed to gradually absorb it. Give it a try. It can help you when you have to cook lot of meat in a hurry. You can either by pre-made marinades in a supermarket, or create own suitable for your taste. If you opt for the latter, olive oil is essential. Mix it with vinegar or wine, some juices like citrus, pineapple or papaya juice, and herbs.
5. ROASTED AND GRILLED VEGETABLES
Steaming the vegetables is not the only way to cook them. You can also grill or roast them. A simple combination of olive oil, salt, herbs and pepper applied before roasting can make wanders for the flavor of your broccoli, cauliflower, peppers, squash, asparagus, or whichever vegetable you choose.
The key is in the high temperature. So, preheat your oven or grill properly before starting to roast or grill them. This helps the flavor to sear into the vegetables. Before grilling, cut the vegetables into smaller pieces, but make sure that they are large enough not to fall through the grates. For roasting vegetables in oven, it is essential to also preheat the pan as well as the oven.
6. CITRUS JUICE
Fresh citrus juice is great for boosting the taste of any dish. It has no adverse effect like salt, which causes your body to retain water. As a plus, you are not just adding flavor, you are also utilizing the vitamin C and other nutrients which make citrus the great protector of your health.
Citrus, obviously, works the best as salad dressing, and can be also used in marinades, or for seasoning seafood. You can also use the citrus zest instead of the juice. This will add a more subtle flavor, add a hint of citrus instead of the distinct taste you get from using the juice.
7. IMPROVE THE PROTEIN SHAKES
When creating your nutrition, be aware that the best way to get the nutrients is primarily from real food. Supplements should be used only for filling the gaps. Although the protein shakes of today are advanced, they are a far cry from tasty and wholesome food. In terms of nutrition quality, the protein shake just doesn’t compare with real balanced whole food. That being said, there is still a way to upgrade the shakes, making them packed with nutrients and tasting just as good as solid food dish.
First, choose your protein powder. Consider using whey protein, because it digests easy. For flavor, you can choose chocolate or vanilla. The next step is mixing the liquids, which can include coconut water, herbal tea, almond milk, hemp milk or other milk alternatives, which change the taste without adding calories. If you want to further upgrade your protein shake, making it a true meal substitute. Add in some berries, banana and butter, and blend them thoroughly.