7 Sneaky Snack Swaps
Every health and fitness platform, whether it be a magazine, podcast or Instagram account, claims to have the best new “food swaps” to help you cut calories while upholding your health. Let me tell you… it’s a bit disappointing when you come to find out that they want you eating “noodles” made of zucchini and brownies made of black beans and applesauce. I’m dishing out 7 ‘direct’ ingredient alternatives to keep your cravings content while still whittling your waistline!
Ditch: store-bought salad dressing. Devour: homemade dressing! Salad toppers like ranch and Caesar can turn a should-be healthy salad into an undercover fat bomb. Some restaurant salads have more calories and saturated fat than a Big Mac! Try topping your favorite greens with lemon juice, olive oil or vinegar! Feeling fancy? Add some Dijon mustard or mashed avocado to the mix.
Ditch: regular yogurt. Devour: Greek yogurt! Your favorite flavored yogurt may have fruit at the bottom but it also has loads of sugar throughout. Treating this snack or breakfast like anything other than… a treat isn’t doing you any favors. Try out some plain Greek yogurt instead! Can’t get used to the flavor? Add in your favorite fruit of choice, nut butter or cinnamon to spice it up.
Ditch: peanut butter. Devour:...peanut butter? Peanut butter should have exactly one ingredient: peanuts. Swap out any variety with added sugar, salt or oil for peanuts, au naturel. You’ll still get the protein punch without the pesky additives.
Ditch: wheat pasta. Devour: bean pasta! Up your protein and fiber intake during a carb-heavy meal by switching out your noodles. With options like red lentil, chickpea, black bean, and edamame, you’re bound to find a variety that you like. The texture is pretty spot on and they’ll take on the flavor of any sauce you choose!
Ditch: sour cream. Devour: more Greek yogurt! A repeat savior?! Sour cream has little to no health benefits, although it’s pretty darn tasty. Satisfy your need for the creamy, tangy dip by switching it out for plain Greek yogurt. I promise, you won’t know the difference.
Ditch: store-bought potato chips or fries. Devour: homemade versions! I’m pretty sure I don’t need to explain why you should be eating less fried potatoes, but I’ll cite sodium and saturated fat just in case. Try thinly slicing your favorite variety of potato into slices or wedges. Spray them with coconut or avocado oil, sprinkle with your seasonings of choice and pop ‘em in the oven for a much healthier alternative to a classic guilty pleasure.
Ditch: soy sauce. Devour: coconut aminos. I’m not going to sit here and tell you not to go out for sushi every so often, because it’s literally the reason I stopped being vegan. However, when it comes to cooking with soy sauce at home, I have a phenomenal alternative. Coconut aminos is a sauce made from coconut sap that is soy and gluten free, yet resembles the saltiness and flavor of standard soy sauce. Use it in stir-fries and salad dressings to cut out a whopping 60% of the sodium!
PS. This isn’t to say it’s not okay to treat yourself every once in a while! There’s nothing like a good ol’ scoop of Ben & Jerry’s sometimes, and don’t let anyone tell you otherwise.