October 16th is World Food Day as designated by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations. This year the focus is on making healthy diets accessible and affordable to everyone. Eating more nutritious, plant foods, can sometimes seem more costly, but we now know that an unhealthy diet and sedentary lifestyle have overtaken smoking as the leading cause of preventable death in the world. It’s important for everyone, everywhere to have the knowledge and access to healthy foods in order to live long and thrive.
Here are a few easy, affordable ways to include some of the world’s most nutritious foods- fruits, vegetables and beans- into your regular meals and snacks.
Cinna-nilla Frozen Bananas- Slice up 2 large bananas. Gently toss with a mixture of 1 tbsp vanilla, 1 tbsp honey, and a few shakes of ground cinnamon. Lay out on a cookie sheet to freeze in freezer overnight. Dip in peanut butter or melted chocolate chips for a tasty treat.
Refried Bean Dip- Dice half an onion and sauté in a pan. Add a diced tomato, and a can of low sodium, low fat refried beans. Cook mixture until bubbling. Pour into a bowl and top with some shredded cheese and more diced tomato, or jarred salsa. Serve with cut veggies like bell peppers, carrots and jicama.
Easy Veggie Pasta- Sauté a package of frozen veggies, look for ones with broccoli, peppers, mushrooms, and/or cauliflower, adding some garlic as they begin to cook through. Pour a jar of low sodium tomato sauce onto the cooking veggies. Cook pasta, and mix with veggie sauce. Garnish with a little parmesan and some fresh or dried Italian seasonings.