Get More from Your Meals

J.J. Starr
Feb 11 · 6 min read

10 Supplement-Free Ways to Pack Nutrients into Each Bite.

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Supermarkets are stocked with healthy supplements from collagen and green powders to multivitamins and nutritional shakes. Despite their popularity, nothing can replace a healthy diet when it comes to meeting all your body’s nutritional needs. In addition to tasting better, whole foods are less expensive. And while many people turn to supplements because they’re fast and easy, packing nutrition into your meals from whole foods can be fast and easy, too.

Below are ten simple ways to make meals more nutrient dense without adding horse pills or chalky shakes to your meal plan.

1. Fresh Herbs

Pro Tip: Put your fresh herbs in water, like cut flowers, in your fridge and they will last days longer.

2. Spices

Pro Tip: If you find a group of spices you love, try blending them together in bulk. This will streamline your cook time.

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3. Coconut Oil

Pro Tip: Buy organic coconut oil that is packaged in glass, as plastic may leech chemicals into the coconut oil.

4. Pumpkin Seed

Pro Tip: Buy raw pumpkin seeds and toast them yourself for the best flavor.

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5. Ground Flax Seed

While most people are familiar with the whole seed, flax can also be ground and used to thicken sauces and even as an egg substitute. Mix it with breadcrumbs for a fish batter or blend into meatloaf, pancakes, and baked goods like banana bread and brownies. Of course, a teaspoon or two will always blend well into a smoothie.

Pro Tip: Buy whole flax seed and grind them yourself using a (clean) coffee grinder. This will preserve freshness and nutrients.

6. Fennel Pollen

Pro Tip: Keep your fennel pollen in your freezer to preserve freshness and flavors.

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7. Berries

Pro Tip: Keep a bag of frozen blueberries in your freezer. The next time you get a sugar craving, try a frozen blueberry instead of candy. It’s refreshing and takes a while to eat — helping you get on with your day without causing a sugar rush.

8. Sauerkraut

Sauerkraut is rich in vitamin C and a great way to add salt and acid to a dish. Just add a forkful to eggs and hash or top off mashed potatoes. I even sneak a bite when I crave something sour and salty.

Pro Tip: Buy the good stuff! Not only will it have a wider range of live micro-organisms, but it will also taste better.

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9. Quick Pickle

The best veggies to use include carrots, ginger, celery, radish, and red onion — though many take well to quick pickling. This is also a great way to use stems that might otherwise be tossed, like from broccoli and kale, as lemon juice neutralizes bitterness — and provides you with tons of vitamin C.

Pro tip: Use a mandoline to get consistent vegetable slices. A small strainer makes it easy to strain seeds.

10. Tea

Pro Tip: Hold on to your tea bags as they can be used for a variety of beauty purposes — like soothing Rosacea and puffy eyes. After use, simply store them in a small container in your fridge.

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While supplements can be useful for many people, like pregnant and nursing women or senior citizens, they are no replacement for a nutrient-rich meal plan. Hopefully, this list has shown you that a healthy diet is easier than you think. How many of these ingredients will you add to your grocery list?

J.J. Starr

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Pleaching my poet self with the rest of me.