By Stephanie E. Ponder
IF TRADITION DICTATES that you ring in
the new year by making a list of improvements you’d like to tackle, you’re definitely not
alone. And typically, topping the list is the
goal of losing weight or at least making
healthier and smarter food choices.
The good news is that modifying meals
and daily food intake doesn’t have to be about
big, sweeping changes. At the heart of making
positive changes is the willingness to incorporate new foods—and ideas.
Here are a few suggestions for diets—here
“diet” refers to a lifestyle rather than a quick fix
for losing weight—that will not only help you
check off a goal or two, but also start you off
with some options for a healthier new year.
Organizers behind Meatless Monday suggest giving up meat one day a week as a way to
experiment with satisfying vegetable dishes
and meat substitutes. Why Monday? Research
shows that Monday is the day most people are
wired to start making positive changes to their
health—the day for a fresh start.
Another popular lifestyle change is the
flexitarian diet. Followers opt for a mostly
The Costco Connection
Costco warehouses carry a variety of fruits,
vegetables and other foods to help you
explore new dishes and eating plans in the
vegetarian diet while still eating meat whenever they’d like, but typically in small amounts.
Popular food writer Mark Bittman suggests what he calls the Vegan Before 6 diet. It
means adhering to a plant-based diet before 6
p.m. and adding meat and dairy only in the
evenings, in limited amounts.
The Paleolithic diet is also continuing to
gain fans. Here people opt for foods that
would have been eaten by our early ancestors,
such as meat, fish, vegetables, fruit and nuts.
Processed foods, along with grains and dairy,
Regardless of what diet piques your interest or seems most aligned with what you want
to eat in the new year, the following recipes
will help you set out on a path to a healthy and
happy life. C
New meals for
the new year
with Apple Salsa
This Paleo powerhouse, topped with a myriad
of fresh produce, uses macadamia nuts and
olive oil for a healthy spin on fried chicken.
1 large apple, cored and diced
1½ cups diced fresh pineapple
3 tablespoons minced fresh apples
1 jalapeño pepper
½ cup diced yellow bell pepper
¼ cup sliced green onion
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts,
pounded to ½-inch thickness, cut in half
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon black pepper
8 ounces macadamia nuts,
3 tablespoons olive oil
Prepare the salsa: In a large bowl, combine all salsa ingredients. Set aside.
Prepare the chicken: Season chicken with
salt and pepper. Place nuts on a sheet of
waxed paper. Place 1 piece of chicken atop
nuts and press firmly to adhere nuts to meat.
Flip chicken and repeat. Carefully set aside.
Repeat with remaining chicken.
Heat oil in a large skillet over medium
heat. Add chicken and cook until golden on
one side, about 3 to 5 minutes. Using a spatula, carefully turn chicken breasts over.
Continue cooking for another 3 to 5 minutes,
until completely golden and cooked through.
Divide chicken among 4 plates and top with
salsa. Serve immediately. Makes 4 servings.
From Fabulous Food The Costco Way (go to
Costco.com; click “Recipes The Costco Way”
at the bottom of the page).