We all know that whole foods are best for our bodies, but believe it or not, there are actually some processed foods that are good for you too. Now, hold on a second- I’m definitely not promoting eating processed foods over whole foods. What I’m referring to are minimally processed foods that are made from 100% whole foods. These foods are slightly altered from their original state, but for the most part very healthy for you. Some are actually quite helpful in a few ways if you’re looking to lose weight or just learning how choose healthier options at the supermarket. Pick up a few of these processed foods that are good for you and consume them with whole foods to get the best of both worlds!
1. Unsweetened Almond or Coconut Milk
These creamy, tasty milks are some of my favorite processed foods that are good for you. They contain no sugar, artificial ingredients, gluten, soy, dairy, or MSG, and have more calcium, Vitamin B12, and Vitamin D than dairy milk. Just remember to avoid light or regular versions since they have added sugar, and choose unsweetened versions instead.
2. Flax Meal
Flax “meal” is nothing more than whole flax seeds that have been ground into a powdery meal for easier use and better nutrient absorption. Flax meal is tasty, high in fiber, omega 3 fats, protein, and it contains no gluten or sugar.
3. Superfood Products
These fun products are easy to use, quite tasty, and so energizing! They're a great way to get more vitamins and minerals into your day, so long as you choose a high quality brand without fillers, sugars, and preservatives.
4. Cocoa Powder
Cocoa powder contains nothing more than processed cocoa beans, and has even been proven to lower blood pressure, stress, sugar cravings, and enhance your skin. Plus, it's a great addition to smoothies, oatmeal, or yogurt, all guilt-free!
5. Organic Plain Greek Yogurt
Of all the unhealthy processed out there, organic, plain Greek yogurt is the exception. It contains no added sugar, fillers, chemicals, added hormones, or pesticides. It is also high in probiotics, protein, Vitamin B12, Vitamin D, potassium, and calcium.
6. Organic Coffee
Coffee gets a bad rap, but is exceptionally high in magnesium, liver cleansing properties, B vitamins, and brain-boosting caffeine. Always choose organic to avoid pesticides since coffee plants are a heavily sprayed crop.
This popular, low-calorie condiment livens up any dish in just minutes! Most versions are also free of sugar, preservatives, and excess sodium. Mustard can even curb your cravings, boost your metabolism, and aid in digestion.
8. Organic Salsa
Organic salsa contains organic fruits and vegetables, and most brands are free of additives of any kind. Salsa is low-calorie, high in vitamins, and can turn a boring salad, omelet, or plate of steamed veggies into a delicious meal in minutes!
9. Raw Nut Butters
Not all nut butters out there are so stellar, but raw nut butters are the exception. These contain nothing more than raw nuts and have no salt or added sugar for the most part. Always check your labels though, just to be safe!
Processed foods aren't all bad for you, but for the most part, whole foods really are your best bet. I like to eat 80% whole foods most of the time, and keep the remaining 20% to the healthy processed food options like these above. Do you have any processed foods that are good for you in mind that you enjoy each week?