You don’t have to go into a full blown diet if you’re heading off on holiday some point soon or if you just want to improve your health. Sometimes a simple casual switch can make a huge improvement on your heart, your fitness levels and your stomach. Below are 10 popular food choices, with a healthy alternative you should consider
1) Beef Burgers
I do love burgers and have tried a few vegetarian options, but it simply doesn’t do it for me. If you want to give a bean burger a go, go right for it, however this is for those that still love a bit of meat between your baps (no pun intended).
Turkey burgers taste surprisingly similar to their beef counterparts, however the saturated fat levels are normally at least 50% lower. I often go for the Asda sweet chilli turkey burgers.
If you haven’t bought a spiralizer yet, I recommend buying one for the kitchen. Pasta has always been a weakness for me and I know I’m not the only one, however with the introduction of the spiralizer, I have been experimenting with courgette spaghetti, as well as a number of other vegetables (courgettes are winning so far). Give it a go, it will taste a bit odd the first time you try it as you’ll be comparing to pasta, but after a few goes, the taste will really grow on you!
3) Chocolate bars
We all snack sometimes. The important thing is to be prepared for when the cravings come along and to have a healthy snack to hand. I therefore recommend keeping some nuts at your workplace. Almonds and walnuts are the healthiest options. Try to buy a big pack, as the small ones are ridiculously overpriced.
I’m always hearing about people’s sugar cravings, but they don’t hit me. Know, I have a completely different addiction. My addiction is cheese! I couldn’t live without it. It would be the one thing I took to a desert island. If you suffer from the same issue, try to swap your usual pack of cheese for a low-fat cottage cheese. This will made up casein, the slow releasing protein, making it not a bad option for an evening snack (as long as you don’t mind the nightmares).
It kills me to say this, but milk can be swapped for water in so many different meals, or it can be cut out completely. Milk is packed with sugars, which are fine, however if you’re looking to lose weight then milk could be that hidden weakness. Swap your normal cereal for porridge made with water. Go for a black coffee. Make boiled eggs instead of scrambled.
You should really try to stick to water where possible, but if you fancy drinking something a bit sweeter, then drop the sugar filled juice for some squash. Always go for a zero added sugar cordial. The options are really quite vast nowadays (my favourite being the Morrison’s cherry flavour).
Chuck out those packs of crisps and make sure they don’t enter your diet for the foreseeable future. Rice cakes are a great alternative, with many options available. Just make sure to avoid the high sugar flavours, such as caramel or chocolate. If you can stomach it, try to go for an unflavoured one.
Back in the day, I used to put ketchup on everything. Seriously, everything! I worked out I was consuming 50% of my daily sugars from ketchup and that was on a calorie increased diet. Needless to say, the ketchup was making me put on a bit of extra unwanted weight. My golden find was gravy. It might sound odd, but it works with so many different meals. If you are eating chicken and vegetables, but you hate how dry it is, all you need to do is boil the kettle and use some gravy granules and you have a very low calorie addition. This helped me to wolf down those broccoli florets all day.
9) Mashed Potato
One of the things I do miss about growing up, getting mashed potato in almost every dinner. I used to love the stuff. On the other hand, it was made with milk and a bit of cream, a hell of a lot of white potatoes (which spike your insulin) and butter, not exactly great if you’re dieting. I recommend going for mashed cauliflower, it honestly tastes better than it sounds! Cook it with plenty of garlic and the taste will shine through.
Cake is Love, cake is life! However, cake is also a massive downer when you’re trying to eat better. A popular dish with vegans, chia seed puddings are very easy to make and can help to keep your sweet tooth at bay, without any of the guilt. I’ll be honest, I’m still working hard on finding a recipe which I enjoy, as I find the texture a bit unusual for my liking.