How to Cook for a Healthier You

Media Inquiries


Our Services

Nutrition and Health Education

MADISON - Does it seem like doctors and other health care professionals are constantly telling you to eat healthy – but then you find yourself wandering the grocery aisles, clueless about what you should be putting in your cart?
A new UW Health nutrition class aims to help, offering basic cooking tips and delicious, simple ideas for preparing healthy foods.
"We often say to our patients that they should do things like eat more whole grains and then we send them out the door. But people really don't know how," says Sarah Van Riet, a UW Health registered dietitian.
"I'm not a chef, so my techniques are certainly not polished, but you don't have to be this amazing professional chef to eat food that is fresh and food that is whole – or as close to its natural state as possible," says Van Riet, who leads the class.
"And most of all," she added, "we really just want our food to be delicious."
Nourishing Your Body
It is important to focus on choosing foods that nourish your body, says Van Riet. Nourishing foods include:
  • Proteins such as nuts and seeds, lean meats, cheese, eggs, beans, legumes, fish, and poultry (try to find meats, poultry, and eggs from animals raised without hormones and antibiotics if possible)
  • Whole grains such as whole wheat, brown rice, oats, barley, millet, quinoa, and popcorn
  • Milk and yogurt (choose organic when possible)
  • Fresh fruits and vegetables (organic and locally grown when possible)
  • Herbal teas, water, and fresh squeezed fruit and vegetable juices and broths
  • Healthy oils such as olive, sunflower, sesame, peanut and canola

In Van Riet's Basic Cooking Tips classes, participants leave with a wealth of information and practical tips – from a list of healthy, reputable cookbooks to try to information about local farm markets and community-supported agriculture farms.


Cooking Tips and Recipes


With an emphasis on practical, basic cooking tips, participants also obtain easy recipes and tips to incorporate more fresh produce into their diets, such as tips for steaming, roasting and grilling vegetables.


A range of other recipe selections encourage participants to try something new, such as Bulgur, Garbanzo and Tomato Summer Salad, or Quinoa Black Bean Salad. The class also covers how to shop for and cook fresh fish, and how to bake, sauté and broil fish.


Sample Recipe: Roasted Vegetables

Date Published: 09/25/2009

News tag(s):  food and nutritionrecipes

News RSS Feed