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Easy Kitchen Hacks To Prepare Healthy And Delicious Foods

02/06/2015 12:36 EST | Updated 04/08/2015 05:59 EDT

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I am always looking for healthy ways to eat and of course make my meals delicious!

Recently, I was fortunate enough to speak with Marida Mohammed, MasterChef Canada Runner-Up, Chef and Philips AirFryer ambassador.

Marida provided some of her top tips on how to prepare food that is healthy and also very tasty.

What are the top tips to cook food in a healthy way that is also scrumptious?

Adding spices to your dishes is a great way to increase flavor in a healthy way. You can eliminate extra salt by adding either fresh hot peppers to dishes or using hot pepper sauce as a condiment. Scotch Bonnet peppers are my favourite!

Don't be afraid to experiment with different oils. Some of my favorites are organic coconut oil for low heat cooking and baking, avocado or grape seed oil for high heat cooking and sautéing and hemp oil for dressings.

Avoid adding white sugar to your food. I always use a healthier alternative like brown cane sugar, maple syrup or honey. They are better for you and I think they taste even better.

What is the biggest myth that people have about preparing food healthfully?

Something people commonly do wrong but isn't healthy is using "low-fat" products in their dishes. I prefer to use fresh, whole foods in moderation.

What are the biggest trends right now to cook food healthfully?

I think the biggest trends in cooking food healthfully right now are using ingredients like coconut oil, avocado, turmeric and the addition of spice. All of which I grew up with in my mother's kitchen.

How to prepare vegetables in a way that is easy, fast and can be tasty?

One of my favourite ways to prepare vegetables that is both healthful and delicious is by adding garlic, thyme, lemon zest, lemon juice, scotch bonnet, chives, cracked black pepper and some grapeseed oil with your favourite medley of cubed vegetables (whatever is in your fridge), toss and roast at 400 degrees for 30 minutes in a conventional oven. Sprinkle lightly after with crumbled feta. It adds a little saltiness without adding salt. This recipe never fails!

Why is it important to take time to understand how to prepare food in a healthy way?

It's important to understand and be aware of what we are putting into our bodies. We are cooking for ourselves and for our families; it's important that a healthy lifestyle starts at home. I believe that when we are more aware of the good things we put into our body, it not only tastes better, it makes us feel better.

Top tips and tricks for preparing food in a healthy way?

I love adding lime juice to salads instead of salad dressing. It not only marinates the salad but it adds a salty taste without added salt. It's delicious too!

Another great idea is to add fresh herbs to your dishes and salads. They add another element of freshness and flavour. A must try!

I will be using these wonderful ideas as I continue to eat healthy and yummy foods.

Please share your comments below. Your suggestions are always welcome, as I continue on my journey to enjoy life to the fullest.

Visit Sacha daily at SachaD.com

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