When you’re trying to shed pounds, little changes to your diet can make a big difference.
When it comes to dieting, rules can get really frustrating. Everything you crave is everything you can’t eat. But that’s not the way it should be. We’ve found a way you can eat what you want, when you want it. To do that, all you have to do is implement smart food swaps.
My approach to nourishment is about making small and simple adjustments to your eating regime, not everything will need changing. I wholeheartedly discourage huge disruption but encourage consistent, achievable change for life.
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Let us discuss 10 healthy and smart food swaps to maintain your health and keep those extra pounds in check
1.Multigrain Flour Instead Of Refined Flour
We don’t have to ditch bread to improve our diet, instead choose a healthier option to substitute the white bread with. Again, the high fiber, levels in wholemeal or rye bread make them a better option against white bread. The way wholemeal or rye bread is digested also means that the sugar, which turns into energy, is released into the bloodstream much more slowly than in white bread, too.
Similarly, Naan which contains white flour, sugar and butter or ghee (fat) should be replaced by whole wheat Chapati which has more fibre because of using wholemeal flour and no butter, doing this will save around 430kcals and chapati taste great! Also read about the Healthiest types of Bread.
2.Brown Rice Instead Of White Rice
Not that white rice has anything wrong with it, but brown rice has several layers and it contains lots of nutrients. The fibre in brown rice is much easier to digest. A small amount of brown rice can make you feel fuller than twice the amount of white rice. This helps in fewer calorie intakes as well as boost up the metabolism.
If brown rice is further milled to remove the bran and the top layers, the result is a whiter rice. This white rice is simply a refined starch that is largely removed of its original nutrients.
What makes white rice not a healthier choice is that it offers absolutely zero nutritional value in your diet. Another healthier option is ‘cauliflower rice’ or ‘millets’. Try our healthy millet upma.
3.Roasted Beans & Nuts Instead Of Salted Chips
For a crunchy, savory evening snack, why not roast some chickpeas or edamame in the oven with some spices? Much more bulk and crunchy fun, versatile, lots of plant-based protein.
The healthy way to satiate your snacks hunger is to try a handful of nuts instead of that bag of chips. Regular eating of nuts reduces the risk of heart diseases. But too much of anything is still harmful given you tend to increase the calorie count. So, make sure to eat a small portion (probably an ounce) rather than mindless munching.
4.Oatmeal Instead Of Breakfast Cereal
Oats might be just about the best food that’s ever been invented. Filling, comforting, cheap and super versatile! It’s our favorite start into the day.
Serving them with some fruit, nuts and plant-based milk is a healthy and accidentally vegan breakfast choice that’s so accessible.
While breakfast cereal that’s not super unhealthy, has tons of sugar added. The same goes for granola which is often made with honey.
You can make your own granola at home without oil and just a small amount of dried fruit to sweeten it — or go with the good old rolled oats, instead. Oatmeal only has around a third of the calories, you can control what you actually put in there, and it’s super versatile. A smart swap to lose weight, isn’t it?
5. Hummus or Mustard Instead Of Mayo
Mayonnaise and butter pretty much have the same calorie count. Add them with bread, and you have a series load of calories on your plate.
An ounce of mayo is around 200 calories and is very easy to eat. If you swapped it for an ounce of hummus, you’d only consume 50 calories! 75% gone with the wind. You can also put mustard on our bread, which only has around 20 calories per ounce.
Means if you swap it with hummus or mustard, you’re only consuming half the calories of mayo! It is a delicious and simple hack. Even hung curd dip with mixed herbs which is equally yummy and healthy. Try out the 9 Homemade Sandwich Spread Recipes For Your Weight Loss .
6.Natural Sugar Instead Of Refined Sugar
We all know that we should probably “quit sugar” for our health and waistline. But not all sugars are the same!
Refined ones are, pretty much, though: No matter if you call it white sugar, brown sugar, coconut sugar, agave syrup, or maple – they all act very similar in our bodies and don’t offer any micronutrients or fiber.
Most of the refined or added sugars we consume are in processed foods like candy bars, chocolate, cake, sauces, baked goods, or snack foods. It’s a no-brainer that these aren’t great for health or weight loss. But if you like to sweeten some of your home-cooked meals, try to use fruit instead.
Dates are a great way to start, bananas or mangoes are also among the sweetest fruits out there. Dried fruit is calorically denser and offers more sweetness (think raisins versus grapes). Try these 3 Easy Date Recipes.
7.Homemade Drink Instead of Packed Beverages
It’s usual to grab a can of an aerated beverage or a canned juice as a quick refreshment. However, not many of us know that these and other energy drinks are again loaded with harmful chemicals in the form of preservatives and contain high amounts of sugar and, therefore, unwanted calories.
So, of course, the healthier alternatives to these would be buttermilk, fruit or vegetable juice, smoothies, coconut water, and traditional Indian drinks like mango/ Aam Panna or kanji. These will give you the same refreshment you’re looking for without pumping unnecessary calories into your system and promote weight loss. Here are 5 Refreshing Indian Summer Drinks to try.
8.Lean Meats Instead Of Fatty Meats
While you cannot avoid red meats like beef, lamb and pork, which are high in fat, try eating lean meats in moderation to get the required nutrients. Add vegetables while cooking the meats to increase the dietary fibre.
You can also go for fish, especially salmon, which has levels of omega-3 fatty acids that improve good cholesterol levels.
You should avoid processed meat like sausages and bacon at all costs as they undergo the processing of grilling, fermentation, salting and curing. This type of meat is modified to increase the shelf life. Instead, go for a fresh, leaner cut such as your chicken or your fish. Of course, it’s got more protein low fat, and it will help build those muscles.
9.Greek Yogurt With Fruits Instead Of Ice-cream
If you have a sweet tooth, desserts must be your greatest enemy in weight loss. Sadly, desserts are heavy on refined sugar, which can put you back a few paces in your weight loss journey.
The hack to this is keeping your house stuffed with yummy fresh fruits and opting for a fruit bowl. Then, whenever you crave something sweet, you can top it with some nuts or yoghurt to add that hint of creaminess and crunch. A quick meal for quick weight loss.
Greek yogurt is lower in sugar, higher in protein, and packed with probiotics (which are great for gut health). Greek yogurt is also packed with vitamin B12, which is needed for energy and healthy brain function.
You can satiate your sugar craving for dessert with frozen fruits like banana, strawberry and mango. Not only you’ll escape loads of sugar but will also get plenty of nutrients. Got some free time? Blend the frozen fruits for a minute and get a yummy and thick dessert like mango lassi ice cream, banana Peanut Butter Ice Cream
10.Spiralized Veggies Instead Of Noodles Or Pasta
Have you ever tried or heard of zoodles? This term is short for zucchini noodles and refers to a nifty kitchen tool, the spiralizer!
Instead of pasta, use spaghetti squash or zucchini noodles. Both spaghetti squash and zucchini are great low-carb alternatives. Spaghetti squash is low in calories and high in fiber. It is also a lot of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants.
Zucchini is also low in calories and full of vitamin C, potassium, and magnesium. Slice your zucchini into thin ribbons or use a spiralizer for a pasta-like dish.
It creates noodle shapes out of vegetables like zucchini, carrots, beetroot, cabbage, sweet potatoes, cucumber and more.
Naturally, these are lower in calories compared to cooked wheat pasta or rice noodles. While these two foods aren’t hindering weight loss or are unhealthy, if you swap out half of them and replace them with super low-calorie zucchini noodles, you can still have a large portion of food while losing weight! If you’re up for it, try our 3 low calorie Pasta Recipes .
Change your diet effortlessly with these healthy food swaps for weight loss! Afforable, tasty and genius ways to lower your calorie intake.
MY APPROACH TOWARDS FOOD AT THREE PILLARS OF FITNESS IS BASED AROUND:
AWARENESS, EDUCATION, ACTION AND HABIT FORMING TO ENSURE THAT HOW YOU EAT, SERVES YOU FOR LIFE.
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