One of the reasons sticking to a healthy diet is so difficult is that it seems so limiting! It’s not surprising given the staggering number of options we have available to eat in modern society. When you realize that the bulk of those options are overly-processed and contain a bunch of BS ingredients, the number of nutritious, available whole foods seems a bit limited.
I’m not one to advocate eliminating foods from your diet, especially if you enjoy them. I don’t think that’s necessary by any means. However, choosing foods that are both versatile and delicious definitely helps to keep you feeling like you actually enjoy eating the foods you eat.
Here’s 5 of my favorite, extremely versatile (and healthy) foods:
One of the holy grails of fitness foods. They taste great and go with just about anything. Eat them straight up, mix them with bananas, put them in anything you bake, fry an egg and put it on top of your once-bland chicken breast. Put in on sandwiches for bonus protein. Put it on toast. Crack one open in your bathwater. You name it, you can do it if you have the power of eggs!
Avocados are probably my favorite food ever. Holy balls are they good. Eat them straight up with a little salt and pepper, slice them and put it on toast, throw it in your breakfast burrito, or even make avocado mousse (haven’t had the cajones to try this one just yet).
3. Rolled Oats
Ok, ok. This one seems pretty boring. However, what oats lack in chic they make up for in brute force. I say rolled oats specifically because:
- I like the texture better than instant or steel cut
- they are slightly less refined than instant and thereby slightly lower glycemic load (think more sustained energy)
Rolled oats are versatile AF! Make them straight up with water or milk, add cinnamon. Put 1/2 cup of them in your protein shakes. Add them to anything you bake for a little extra texture. You can put anything in your oats! Protein powder, bananas, or even……
4. Peanut Butter
Anyone who has spent any amount of time trying to gain weight knows this one. Peanut butter is an absolute staple—it’s loaded with calories, good fats, and protein. Not to mention…..what DOESN’T go well with peanut butter?!
Personally, I’m a big fan of just spreading some natural PB on toast and having a glass of whole milk with it. Don’t limit yourself, though. Put it on your pancakes as a topping instead of syrup. Mix it with your protein shakes if you’re a hardgainer. Hell, just eat it by the spoonful because it’s delicious. Or if you need a dirty little treat, mix some chocolate chips with the stuff and microwave it = HEAVEN.
5. Protein Powder
Don’t call this one a cop-out. It’s not, I swear! Ok, maybe it is. Seriously though, the number of uses for protein powder are practically endless. I use it to sweeten stuff! Mix it with plain greek yogurt to make protein pudding. If you haven’t already, try protein fluff. It’s amazing and ridiculously filling.
Personally, ON whey is my favorite protein. Don’t bother with the fancy flavors, they are sub par in my experience. Stick with chocolate, vanilla, or strawberry if you’re insane I suppose.
Well, it’s a short list—but I think you can make almost any diet way way more interesting if you start getting a little creative with how you use these foods. Don’t be afraid to experiment with mixing stuff together! That’s how you find out what you like and what works for you.