When it comes to healthy living, one of my main philosophies is that I don’t believe in diets or quick fixes. I believe in learning, every day, to make healthy choices that lead to living a healthy lifestyle.
Once you know what those healthy choices are, you’re free! No more counting calories or depriving yourself of food. You can eat healthy, fresh, delicious food for all your meals and snacks, and feel satisfied. (You’ll probably start to notice some other positive results as well, such as clear skin, weight loss, healthy digestion and increased energy.)
To get you started here are 10 healthy substitutes for your next recipe:
1. Plain Greek Yogurt versus Sour Cream: Greek yogurt is high in protein, low in fat and calories, and a great source of pro-biotics or healthy bacteria, which is amazing for proper digestion. Use Greek yogurt in fajitas, dips or sauces.
2. Banana versus Egg: Bananas provide a great way to add moisture and natural sweetness to your recipes and keep them vegan-friendly. If you do bake with eggs, make sure you buy organic or the kind that verifies the feed is free from antibiotics and hormones.
3. Avocado versus Mayo: Avocado has a creamy texture, making it the perfect substitute for mayo. And it’s a major superfood. It’s a source of healthy fats and protein. Eating avocado is amazing for proper digestion and healthy, glowing skin.
4. Unsweetened Almond Milk versus Cow’s Milk: Almond milk is a great source of calcium and vitamin E (antioxidant!) and it’s lower in calories and sugar than regular milk. Dairy is one of the most common allergens out there. If you constantly have a runny nose, skin issues or feel sick after consuming dairy you probably have a sensitivity to it, and should consider switching to almond milk. (Silk is a good brand.) Use almond milk like you would regular milk in any recipe.
5. Coconut Sugar versus White and Brown Sugar: Coconut sugar is all-natural and a source of non-refined vitamins and minerals. It’s one of the few sugars out there that doesn’t spike your blood sugar, which means it’s not addictive and won’t get stored as fat like regular sugar. It’s also safe for diabetics!
6. Spaghetti Squash versus Pasta: Spaghetti squash has the look and texture of noodles, but it’s low in calories and full of nutrients. It’s a great source of beta-carotene, fiber, and is naturally gluten-free. Squash is in season right now, so give it a try!
7. Mashed Cauliflower versus Mashed Potatoes: Mashed cauliflower looks exactly liked mashed potatoes, but it’s low-carb and low-calorie, and still tastes great. It’s also in the brassica family of vegetables, which means it’s cancer fighting! Click here to check out a great recipe for cauliflower crust pizza!
8. Quinoa versus White Rice: Like rice, quinoa is gluten-free, but unlike rice it’s high in protein and nutrients. Also, quinoa is a seed not a grain so it won’t spike your blood sugar like white rice.
9. Natural Peanut Butter versus Sugary Hydrogenated Oil Peanut Butter: if you haven’t already, you must make the switch to natural peanut butter. It has no sodium, sugar or hydrogenated vegetable oil. It’s just ground peanuts. I love products that only have one ingredient, that way you know there’s no crap in it!
10. Vegetarian Protein (whole grains and legumes) versus Meat Protein: Too much meat can be hard on our digestive systems and we all know that proper digestion is the key to health. The next time you’re making something that calls for meat, such as chili, try combining legumes (chick peas, black beans, etc.) with a whole grain (brown rice or pasta) instead. The combination equals a complete protein.
Cheers to healthy choices and healthy living!