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A nutritionist shares the 7 staples of her diet

TODAY logo TODAY 10/11/2017 Keri Glassman, R.D.

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Keri Glassman, a registered dietitian, shares the nutritious foods she eats every day.

A question I get, well, almost every day is, "What do you eat?" I get it, people want to know what health professionals grub on. I'm happy to spill the beans, with one caveat: What's right for me, may not be right for you. We all need to look at our diets in a very individual way.

With that being said, I like to share my favorites to help those looking to improve their nutrition. Here are a few of my daily eats:

1. Coffee

Yes, I'm one of those people that preps my Joe the night before so that I can wake up to the sweet sound of the pot brewing. And while coffee can be controversial, I'm a big fan. Coffee is high in antioxidants, and drinking a cup has been linked with a lower risk of diabetes, stroke and cognitive issues like depression.

Besides the health benefits, I enjoy sipping a warm beverage as part of my morning routine. I take mine with just a little organic milk or unsweetened almond milk and absolutely no sweetener. Coffee is high in pesticides so make sure to buy organic and fair trade.

2. Smoothie

This is my go-to breakfast many mornings a week. OK, it's not really a "food," but it is such a staple I had to put it on the list. It's super easy to use leftovers and make something delicious.

My go-to ingredients are normally vegan protein powder, unsweetened almond milk, greens, almond butter and sometimes a boost of collagen, matcha or maca. If this one doesn't do it for you, here's the formula for making any smoothie a near perfect one.

3. Greens

I try and get greens into as many meals as possible even breakfast (see my smoothie above!). Green veggies offer a powerful dose of fiber, vitamins and minerals including antioxidants and phytochemicals which have been shown to lower cholesterol, prevent heart disease and may help reduce the risk of cancer.

If you're sick of your regular cucumber, tomato and romaine, or feeling uninspired by your fridge, try adding pumpkin seeds or pomegranate seeds, with a little bit of goat cheese, slice a crisp apple or sprinkle on some farro. You get it. There are many options. A bed of greens is the perfect start to the perfect meal. For a heartier dish, try a grain bowl topped with greens.

4. Cold-pressed oil

Some type of oil, whether it be olive, coconut, almond or even walnut, always makes its way into my diet — multiple times a day, usually. We all know by now that fat is your friend, and you need to stay tight with the good ones. My favorite salad dressing is olive-oil based and I use coconut oil on sprouted-grain bread often.

5. Nuts and nut butters

OK so this is technically multiple foods, but both are pantry staples in my home. You can't beat the protein, healthy fat, fiber and antioxidant combo of nuts. Cashews and almonds are go-to afternoon snacks, peanut butter is a no-fail dip for fruit or sliced carrots. And, sunflower or pumpkin seeds often make an appearance on dinner salads.

While you need to watch your intake (these faves are easily over done), a little it goes a long way in terms of taste, satisfaction and health.

6. In-season roasted veggies

Every night for dinner we serve a raw and a roasted veggie. My favorite is "burnt" broccoli, but you can roast almost any veggie for the perfect side dish. I aim to use veggies that are in-season and to shake it up night to night.

7. Lean protein (chicken or salmon)

Protein is important for building muscle and antibodies and for keeping you satisfied, which is one of the reasons it is linked to weight loss.

Dinner for me most nights consists of some kind of lean protein. I eat many vegan lunches and get my animal protein in at dinner. Making your breakfasts and lunches largely plant-based provides a good balance if your dinner often consists of some type of animal protein. Most often it comes in the form of chicken, grass-fed beef or wild salmon or other fish. Once you have your couple of favorite ways to prepare or marinate, it becomes super easy to whip together.

For more advice from Keri, follow her on Instagram.

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