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Healthy Food subsitutes

Moving towards a healthy leaner diet doesn’t have to be hard and you don’t have to sacrifice all the flavours you love try these simple food substitutions to help improve your diet.

Firstly, I urge you to invest in some 1-calorie cooking spray to use instead of standard cooking oil, you may not wish to use it as a base for all you cook but it sure knocks a few calories out of an omelette. Here are a few others that you may wish to try,

Juice, fizzy drinks with water tea, or even sugar free squash

Most fizzy drinks, including diet varieties, are 100% nutrition-free. That’s right, no benefit whatsoever. In fact, drinking only a few cans of pop a day may lead to tooth decay, obesity, diabetes, and even heart disease. And it’s not just the calorie content that’s worrisome, it’s also the sweetness. Even low-calorie diet drinks are dangerous because they can feed your sweet tooth, leading to downstream sugary snacking.

Let your fizzy drink cravings fizzle out by switching to a nice glass of mineral water with a touch of lime or lemon instead. Limes are high in vitamin C and also contain flavonoids with anti-cancer and antibiotic properties.

Ice cream for pro-biotic yogurt

Ice cream may be decadent and delicious, but it’s also bad for your health.  On average a single scoop of premium ice cream contains about 250 to 350 calories and a half-a-day’s worth of saturated fat.

To avoid this calorie-heavy nightmare, opt for organic probiotic yogurt. Early evidence on the health benefits of probiotic bacteria looks promising with studies showing that probiotics may help prevent stomach and urinary tract infections. Lastly, yogurt is also full of calcium.

Energy drinks – low cal energy drinks

Energy drinks are notorious for their sugar content. Even one small drink may contain well over 100 calories. Energy drinks are also loaded with caffeine, which can cause irritability, nervousness and sleeping problems. Additional ingredients like taurine, ginseng and ginkgo biloba are claimed to boost energy, but in reality, there is little-to-no scientific evidence to support such claims.

For the calorie-conscious people who are in need of hydration and energy, there are plenty of low-calorie alternatives, offering up all of the body’s electrolytic needs with zero sugar and calories.

Chips – sweet potato wedges

Good old fashioned chips (or fries as they say across the pond) are the darling of the fast-food industry. This deep-fried finger food may taste great, but fries are also dangerously high in sodium, trans fat and calories. A large box of popular fries will cost you anywhere from 500 to 600 calories.

To satisfy those salty urges, whip up some homemade, oven-roasted sweet potato wedges instead. Sweet potatoes are an excellent, antioxidant rich, anti-inflammatory alternative to white potatoes. Just brush with olive oil, add a pinch of sea salt and roast.

Cake – fruit bread

It’s no mistake that there is a cake named after the devil himself. After all, most cakes are brimming with refined sugar and can easily exceed 300 calories per serving with 10 or more grams of saturated fats and little to no protein or fibre.

Thankfully, you can be your own cake-manager by choosing a healthy alternative like banana bread. Whip up a loaf using whole wheat flour, wheat germ, ground flax seed, and some crushed nuts and you’ll have a recipe for health success!

Chocolate bars – High cocoa % Dark Chocolate

Let’s face it, some men and women absolutely adore chocolate. The problem is that many popular chocolate bars are high in calories, refined sugars and saturated fats — all of which have been linked to adverse health events. Even more worrisome is that many sweet companies are silently substituting real cocoa for more cost-friendly alternatives like vegetable oil. The result is “chocolate-flavoured” sweets and not the real thing.

To ensure that you are still getting heart-healthy flavonoids from your chocolate, substitute those brand-name chocolate bars for organic or milk-free dark chocolates that are high in cocoa content and free of additives.

Sweets – dried fruit

As far as nutritional content is concerned, lollies are about as bad as bad as it can get. Loaded with unhealthy refined sugar, sweets offer nothing beneficial to the body — no fibre, no protein, no vitamins or minerals — only empty calories. Despite the fact that refined sugar is firmly linked to obesity and diabetes, the average person consumes 24.7 pounds of sweets each year.

To counter sugar cravings, try switching to dried fruit alternatives, like figs, apricots or dates. While still on the sweet side, these dried fruits are full of fibre and important minerals like potassium.

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