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Choose Only the Best

People get excited when I tell them that I am a dietitian, and that I work part-time at Whole Foods. Then they get confused when I tell them that I work in Specialty - cheese, beer, wine, coffee, chocolate, oh my!

Photo courtesy of: http://www.parmigianoreggiano.com/

Photo courtesy of: http://www.parmigianoreggiano.com/

As a dietitian, I am not the food police. It is not my job to bring misery and restriction to someone's life.

I like food. A lot. And I think that you should too. 

The best ways to balance loving fantastic foods and staying healthy are to practice moderation, and to practice excellence.

While practicing moderation may not be easy for you to DO, it's probably easy to understand. All things can be incorporated into a healthy diet, it's just a matter of how often and how much.

But practicing excellence? By this, I mean that you should only use the BEST ingredients you can. Choose quality over quantity every time.

This is something I often tell people in the cheese department. If you love cheese, buy the best. Buy the parmigiano reggiano, the original parmesan, a cheese that is truly incomparable to anything else. But use it sparingly - and you'll be able to because of the robust flavor. Or buy truffle gouda or aged gruyere, and a make a quiche to end all quiches. You won't need as much, because they are both such high quality, flavorful cheeses. 

Don't use whipped topping when you crave real whipped cream. Don't eat turkey bacon if you'll eat twice as much as you would if it was center-cut pork bacon.

This is also a good culinary principle. Don't buy cheap ingredients, or you get cheap food. And I don't mean that you have to spend your life savings. I just mean pick the highest quality. Even things like beans and grains have quality differences, but they aren't expensive ingredients.

When you do spend a little extra money, though, you're more likely to savor the food you make. And if you make food that you savor, you're less like to binge on it. Pick things that satisfy your cravings, that delight your taste buds. And you may find yourself eating less and more satisfied.

Who knew?