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Eat, Drink, and Be Healthy

What Processed Foods are “Healthy”?

As a dietitian, I encourage reducing processed foods if they are the majority of your diet or don’t make you feel good. Of course focusing on fruits and veggies is important for all of us to meet our micronutrient and fiber needs. HOWEVER, I am always asked by clients, “Are there any good healthy processed portable foods out there?”

 

The answer is YES. I would be lying if I said I didn’t eat processed foods almost everyday. Nobody has the perfect diet and that’s OK. Just because something is processed does not mean it is “bad”.

Thank goodness, right? Many responsible food companies are doing their best to provide quality processed options for people on-the-go and in need of quick, sustainable options.

If you think about it, almost all foods at the grocery store have been through some type of processing. Just because veggies have been flash frozen and bagged, doesn’t mean they are an unhealthy choice.

Here a few of my top favorite processed foods:

Bars

RX Bars (I use the kids’ as a snack option)

Epic Bars: Meat Bar 

Lara Protein Bars

KIND Bars (I buy the mini’s)

Nuts & Nut Butters (watch out for added sugars)

RX Nut Butters

Justin’s Almond Butter

Roasted Nuts

Seeds

Roasted Chickpeas

Roasted Edamame

Beans & Grains

Rx Oatmeal

Hummus

Dried or canned beans of all kinds! 

Quinoa

Brown Rice (90 Second)

Ezekiel Bread

Granola 

Popcorn

Kodiak Cakes

Protein

Tuna Packets

Canned Salmon

Canned Chicken

Jerky (I make my own but like this brand as well)

Smoked Salmon (I make my own but like this brand as well)

Hard Boiled Eggs/Frittatas 

Chicken Sausage 

Collagen

Whey

Casein

Dairy

Plain Yogurt

(Check out my Overnight Oat/Yogurt Parfait Recipe)

Plain Kefir

Individual Cheese and Cottage Cheese

Unsweetened protein nut milk

Fruits & Veggies

Frozen Veggies & Fruits

Dehydrated & Dried Fruits & Veggies

Pickles

Guacamole

Skillet Bags by Rooster & Lark

Caulipower

(See Caulipower Pizza Recipes)

Sauces & Oils

Olive, Avocado, Sesame, Peanut, and Canola Oils

Vinegar

Balsamic, Red Wine, White Wine

Sauces & Dressings (Avoid added sugar)

Seasonings (I LOVE this EVERYTHING SEASONING)

Broths

Coffee, Tea & Treats

Coffee

Matcha

Dark Chocolate

Chocolate Almonds

Trail Mix

These options can be great for camping, outdoor activities or simply “emergency snacks” for the car or your purse! Having easy staple ingredients on hand and available is often a barrier for people. Don’t overthink it! Choose what you like and be flexible with your food choices. 

***All the links provided are brands I personally like and trust. There are millions of options out there!

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