Did you know that February is heart month? To keep your heart healthy, the Heart and Stroke Foundation suggests adding fruits and vegetables to meals and snacks, switching to whole grains, and eating a wide variety of nutrient-packed foods. They also suggest that Canadians change the proportions of their plate so that protein sources such as meat and fish are no longer the main attractions. Instead, they suggest you fill about half of the plate with a colourful variety of vegetables and a quarter of the plate with whole grains such as brown rice and 100% whole-grain bread. Fish, poultry, lean meat or legumes (chickpeas, lentils, tofu) should make up the remaining one-quarter of the plate.*
Healthy eating starts at home, so the Heart and Stroke Foundation has developed some great heart-healthy but family-friendly recipes to get you on the right track:
Homemade macaroni and cheese
The addition of sweet potato adds a very orange colour and sweet healthy flavour to a homemade favourite. With a few added veggies and a breadcrumb topping, this casserole has all the tasty components of a great weeknight side dish.
Turkey and apple meatballs
Apple works well with turkey, giving it a subtle sweetness. These meatballs are sure to be a hit. Serve them with applesauce to dip or over whole-grain noodles or brown rice.
Half of the beans in this recipe are puréed so picky eaters won’t even know they’re there.
These croquettes are about the same size as chicken nuggets and kids will love to dip them in some low-fat ranch dressing.
Four season pizza
Kids will have a great time using a variety of vegetables to decorate this pizza. The toppings are endless. Chop up a few favourite vegetables and a few new ones, and let the kids get creative.
Bowtie pasta with chicken, veggie and tomato sauce
This meal is great for providing energy for your active kids. Don’t worry about them not liking the vegetables in this recipe.
*Source: Heart and Stroke