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What does a Partnership for a Healthier America Nutrition Expert Keep in their Pantry?

Stock your kitchen like a registered dietitian! To celebrate National Nutrition Month, we’re sharing five pantry staples that Maya Maroto, PHA’s Vice President of Federal, State, and Municipal Partnerships and registered dietitian always keeps in her pantry. These items are tasty and can be regularly included in a healthy diet.

Olive Oil

Olive oil is a great ingredient to have on hand for sauteing vegetables or seafood. You can also mix it with different spices and balsamic vinegar to make an easy homemade salad dressing. Olive oil is high in monounsaturated fats, which are known to be good for heart health.

Canned Tomatoes

Canned tomatoes are so versatile and can be used as an easy and delicious addition to soups, stews, and chilis. You can also throw them in a blender with a few other ingredients to make a homemade tomato sauce. Tomatoes are high in antioxidants like beta carotene and lycopene, which can help with inflammation, decrease the risk of cancer, and boost eye health.

Canned Salmon

Canned salmon can be a base ingredient for salmon cakes, a budget-conscious, convenient, and tasty weeknight recipe for busy families. Salmon is high in protein and has essential fatty acids like Omega 3, which are great for the brain. Salmon is also packed with vitamin D and calcium, nutrients that are great for bone health.

Seaweed Snacks

Seaweed snacks are a budget friendly, crunchy, and slightly salty snack that can be a healthier alternative to other snacks like potato chips. Seawood is a good source of iodine, which helps regulate metabolism, and critical for children’s brain development.

Popcorn Kernels

Popcorn kernels can be popped on the stovetop and topped with a little butter, parmesan cheese, and/or salt for a tasty treat during movie night or another fun occasion. Popcorn is a 100% whole grain with a good amount of dietary fiber, which has benefits for digestive wellness and cardiovascular health.

About Dr. Maroto

Maya Maroto, EdD, MPH, RDN, is PHA’s Vice President for Federal, State, and Municipal Partnerships and works with new and existing partners to ensure all families have access to healthy, sustainable, and culturally-relevant food. Dr. Maroto came to PHA from ​​the Food and Drug Administration Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition and the United States Department of Agriculture Food and Nutrition Service where she managed nationwide nutrition education and outreach initiatives.

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