Believe it or not, there are some simple changes you can make in your diet to eliminate unhealthy choices and replace them with options that are healthier and just as tasty (or sometimes even tastier!).
12 ways you can Switch it UP!
1. Drink fruit juice? Eat whole fruit instead. Fruit juices don’t contain any of the fibre that goes along with a whole fruit – juices almost always have added sugar and/or flavor to ensure that each bottle tastes the same as the next. You can skip that added yuckiness by eating a piece of fruit, and drinking water instead. You can even add flavour to your water by slicing the fruit and dropping a piece or two into it.
2. Eat deep-fried foods? Try pan-frying instead. Deep-fried foods are simply bad for your health because the food absorbs the saturated and trans fats and then all of that ends up in your body. Pan-frying uses a fraction of the amount of oil that is used in deep-frying, and you can use healthier oil choices, such as coconut oil or olive oil.
3. Use sour cream? Try using unflavoured Greek yogurt instead of sour cream. You’ll benefit from additional protein and reduced fat content.
4. Like ketchup? How about dips? Replace both with salsa. It’s a great replacement for ketchup and is the perfect dip for chips. Salsa has added nutrients and more flavour, and also has very few calories.
5. Enjoy pancakes or french toast? Instead of using syrup or jam, use fruit such as mixed berries on top. This is also a good option to use in place of jam on your peanut butter sandwich, and you’ll benefit from added fibre.
6. Eat cereal for breakfast? Try oatmeal instead. Most cereals contain 3-5 teaspoons of sugar per bowl. Add a little fruit or cinnamon to your oatmeal to get the added sweetness and flavour in a healthier way.
7. Spread mayo on your sandwiches? Squeeze some mustard on them instead! Mustard is fat-free and has a fraction of the calories found in mayonnaise.
8. Rice it up? Instead of white rice, opt for brown. White rice has had the antioxidants and fibre stripped away in the refining process, and brown rice has more flavour than white rice.
9. Eat in front of the TV? Eat at the table instead. If you eat at the table, you’ll be more mindful of what you’re eating and if you’re with other people, it will promote conversation that will slow your eating and give your body time to send you signals when you are full.
10. Buy your lunch? Pack it instead. Make that bit of extra effort the night before and make a health lunch to take to work. Not only will you save money, but you’ll benefit from more nutritious options than what you’ll find at the vending machine, the fast food place, or the food court.
11. Eat out? If you can’t avoid eating out (try to eat out only occasionally), ask for sandwiches or burgers without the bun; ask for (brown) rice or an extra vegetable serving instead of the potatoes or french fries.
12. Shrink your plate. Switch from a larger size plate to a smaller one. It’s easy to over-fill a large plate because it gives the perception of not being full enough. By filling a smaller plate, you’re more likely to use proper portion sizes and consume up to 20% less.
Thinking of making some changes to your diet? Pick two items from the list above and set a goal to achieve them consistently.