Top 10 Healthy Food Swaps That Fit People Live By

“If I don’t eat it, she will feel bad!”
 – the aloo ke paranthe made by Mom
“I need my cold coffee in the morning”
– the jug of milk and sugar blended by Ramu bhaiya

Candy, Dairy and Processed foods are weapons of mass destruction, fighting off our self-control constantly and laying our insides to waste (genuinely imagining these tiny robots nuking my metabolic machinery).

Eating healthy is a thing. You knew that unless you are stuck in a time capsule. Avoid desserts, fried foods, carbonated drinks, so much noise all around. But, deep down we all know that a lettuce leaf and boiled broccoli isn’t going to make us merry. 

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.

To receive my help why not reach out and book a 15-minute lifestyle check-up, by clicking the button below?

Online Consultation

Let us discuss 10 healthy and smart food swaps to maintain your health and keep those extra pounds in check

1.Choose wholemeal/rye bread over white bread

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. 

Also, read the healthiest type of bread

Healthiest bread

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!

2.Swap white rice with brown rice

Not that white rice has anything wrong with it, but brown rice has more fibre. 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. White rice is not amongst the unhealthiest option. What makes it not a healthier choice is that it offers absolutely zero nutritional value in your diet. Another healthier option is ‘cauliflower rice’ or ‘farro’. 

3.Say yes to nuts and no to chips

That bag of chips which is too irresistible right now is full of sodium, saturated and trans fats. This, unfortunately, contributes to the buildup of plaque on the inner walls of your arteries, increasing the risk of coronary heart disease. Apart from that refined carbohydrates found in chips spike your blood sugar levels.

Snacking

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. 

Here are some healthy homemade snacks

4.Porridge Instead Of Breakfast Cereals

Granola and cereals are overly hyped.

That bowl-full of packaged breakfast cereal may look like a healthier option but it is high on sugar. Replace it with oats porridge. It will not only make you feel full for a longer time but it is packed with essential nutrients as well. So what more do you want? Porridge is slow energy releasing food with a low glycaemic index too!

Overnight oats

You can even make your granola with fruits and nuts, minus the oil! Oats are great for the heart, fill you up, are great to taste and overall, help you lose weight over-processed granola. A smart swap to lose weight, isn’t it?

Here is why you should eat overnight oats

5.Hummus or mustard instead of mayo dip

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. 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.

Yogurt dip

Check out our tasty yoghurt dips

6.Baked over fried stuff

Next time you’re thinking of binge eating on fries, think again! They have more than 400 calories versus oven-baked hash browns, which are only 98 calories rich per 127g serving. Choose a baked alternative for everything else too, without a great compromise in taste!

7.Swap Table Salt With natural Herbs And Spices

Salt guide

Season your dish with herbs and spices as much as possible and reduce your salt intake. Spice up your dishes with ginger and add flavours with basil and curry powder. You can also experiment with Italian seasonings.

Here are the different types of Salt

8. Go for 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.

Salmon

9.Frozen Fruits Instead Of Ice-cream

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.

Banana peanut butter icecream

Check out our mango lassi ice cream, banana Peanut Butter Ice Cream

10.Try skimmed milk over full-fat milk

Start with semi-skimmed milk that is lower in saturated fat and slowly banish full-fat milk entirely from your kitchen. Use it in your porridge or morning tea/coffee and you will soon make the final switch.

Also read 11 Brain-Boosting Beverages That are not Coffee

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.

TO FIND OUT MORE ABOUT HOW I CAN HELP YO TO LOSE WEIGHT GET IN TOUCH TODAY.
Eat, travel, laugh, and live!

Food as Medicine-to maintain, prevent, and treat disease | The Power of Mindful Eating

Before we dive into the main course, however, here are a few observations on food and health throughout the ages. You may recognize some of the quotes :

When diet is wrong, medicine is of no use. When diet is correct, medicine is of no need.

Each patient carries his own doctor inside him.

We need every doctor to become a nutritionist and to know how food impacts the conditions he or she sees inpatients every day.

The father of medicine, Hippocrates believed that illness stemmed from inadequate nutrition and bad eating habits and that if people were to learn good eating habits then optimum health would be restored.

Besides breathing and sleeping, eating is life’s most vital activity. We cannot sustain ourselves without eating.  But we seem to have forgotten this, spending very few hours (or even minutes) gathering, preparing, and eating food.

Food as a Preventative Medicine to keep us Healthy

It’s estimated that 80% of disease can be tied to food and lifestyle choices.

Overall, seeing your food as medicine helps you make better decisions about what (and how) to eat in order to make the best decisions for your own wellbeing.

There are many factors that culminate to bring about diseases such as stress, nutrition, hormone balance, the health of our gut, and the importance of detoxification and food.

How A Food As Medicine Approach Can Help Prevent Disease

What we eat is the main culprit behind many chronic diseases, and eating a healthier diet helps prevent and treat the most common of these debilitating conditions.

Take for example Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS). It is a relatively modern condition, which impacts over 25 million people in the US alone. The majority of them spend money on various over-the-counter drugs, specialized treatments and doctor visits — a multibillion-dollar industry. Yet, IBS is completely curable within a month of eating right. No need for long-term ineffective treatments, no extra spending. Just plain, simple, good food.

Potassium helps to maintain healthy blood pressure. Dietary fibre reduces cholesterol levels in the blood. Folic acid helps the body produce red blood cells, and vitamins are building blocks used throughout the body.

Fueled by a healthy diet, the body is more resilient. A strong immune system is great for fighting infections short term, but if the immune system is constantly triggered, it can create chronic inflammation. Chronic inflammation is a factor in diabetes, obesity.

For people with diabetes, living well means keeping blood sugar levels in a normal range. Too much sugar in the blood and they risk damaging their kidneys, eyes and vascular system. Too little, and they could pass out or slip into a diabetic coma. There is an abundance of research that shows how managing diet is essential for sustaining healthy blood sugar levels.

On the flip side, the saturated fats and sugars in highly processed foods can trigger a cascade of events that may leave us sleepy, tired and craving more food. High-fat and high-sugar foods contribute to obesity and increase the chance of developing type 2 diabetes.

What does food do in our bodies?

The food we eat gives our bodies the “information” and the materials they need to function properly. If we don’t get the right information, our metabolic processes suffer and our health declines.

If we get too much food or food that gives our bodies the wrong instructions, we can become overweight, undernourished, and at risk for the development of diseases and conditions.

In other words, nutrients give our bodies instructions about how to function. In this sense, food can be seen as a source of “information” for the body. 

Food gives us energy and allows us to think, move, and prosper. But we are no longer attentive to the impact of food on our functioning. Our food preferences and choices are now influenced more by food companies, ad campaigns, and the notion that “faster is better.”

We don’t always (or perhaps even often) pick foods based on what our bodies need for optimal wellness. Our busy lives and stress prevent us from taking the time to really nourish body and soul. We eat for convenience, not health.

What eating Mindfully means

Eating a mindful/conscious meal means completely focusing your mind on the ‘process’ of eating. You take it moment by moment and focus on the here and now. You begin by looking at the food, noting the different colours and shapes. You really see what is in front of you. You also become aware of the manner in which you reach for the spoon and fork.

Food doesn’t automatically end up in your mouth. Your entire body is involved in getting it there, from ingredients to atmosphere, whether appealing or appalling, both the psychological mood and the physical accessories that surround you when you eat may influence the way in which you metabolize food and in turn your health and wellbeing.

Mindful eating is a skill that you can acquire if you do it enough. When you move from emotional eating to mindful eating, you’ll feel much better because you’ll be taking care of yourself. You’ll know you’re in charge and, therefore, you’ll be able to stay in control of your body.

Mindful eating means being conscious of your food choices and how the foods you eat affect every level of your existence, from your body to your mind, to your spirit, to the world you live in.

How does mindfulness help?

1. If we begin to pay attention to how specific foods impact our body, we can start to make better choices about what foods to buy and eat.

2. If we pay attention as we eat, we are likely to eat less and to better digest what we eat.

3. We are participating in an activity that replenishes us. By eating, we are literally providing our body with the material – physical and mental – to “build” ourselves.

The way to conscious eating begins with the intention: choosing to eat consciously at each meal. Keeping the intention alive is a great way to achieve mastery over self.

To eat consciously, we need to work from the inside out. We begin by going beneath our habitual relationship with food and getting to know the energetics of food and digestion.

It is our own digestive experience that determines whether what we eat is supporting our body’s metabolic processes or disrupting them.

Thinking about food in this way gives us a view of nutrition that goes beyond calories or grams, good foods or bad foods. This view leads us to focus on foods we should include rather than foods to exclude.

Instead of viewing food as the enemy, we look to food as a way to create health and reduce disease by helping the body maintain function.

Relishing the tastes and flavours: Enjoying meal while paying close attention to the tastes, sensations, flavours and textures of the food. You’ll be surprised at how much better food tastes when you’re paying attention. When you focus on enjoying the taste of food, even something as mundane as a slice of warm toast can feel like heaven!

If food has the power to prevent much of the chronic illness we experience today then it makes sense to alter our diets to use it to our own advantage to not only heal and restore the body but also to prevent illness. 

Thinking about what is at the end of your fork can help you to avoid specific illnesses that arise due to years of unhealthy eating.

The good news is that these can be reversed with the help of a good diet. Even if you live on takeaway you can make healthier choices. More and more food services, restaurants, and other institutions are recognizing the healing power of food and are including healing foods as part of their menus so nutritious food is not as hard to find as it once was.

By Priyanshi Bhatnagar

8 Proven Steps to Lose Weight Instead of Counting Calories + 9 My Personal Strategy

My previous article was entirely emphasised on why we should stop counting calories for overall health benefits.

But while I focused on reasons to stop counting calories and it impacts our physical and mental well being.

So, here I bring out the healthy ways of getting the result of most of your health goals naturally and holistically.

This is exactly how we should do for better longterm health.

Instead of pulling out your logbook and pens, follow these tips and you’ll naturally begin to drop weight while healing your body and satisfying hunger pangs, ensuring your belly doesn’t constantly ring the alarm that’s it’s hungry. Speaking of which, to curb your appetite quickly and easily—without diet pills or counting calorie plans—don’t miss our essential healthy eating ways.

1. Listen to your body: Notice the sensations your my body before, during, and after eating.

Think about what you eat makes you feel. Is it satisfying? Enjoyable to eat? Does it keep you full until lunch or does it leave you wanting a snack after an hour?

“For example, does the meal gives you sustained energy or do you have an energy crash?”

2. Tune in to what your body actually wants.

Healthy eating encourages you to get back in touch with your body’s own signals that tell us what to eat and when rather than relying on external cues like strict diet rules.

“Diet culture has disconnected us from our bodies and the wisdom that lies within it.” If we were to get out of our head and listen and connect to our body, we’d eat a lot differently.

3. Eat more plants and whole foods.

Fill up on foods containing fiber, healthy fats and phytonutrients like fruits, nuts, beans, virgin plant oils, non-starchy veggies, minimally processed whole grains, and fish, as well as yoghurt with live probiotics.

Cheese, eggs, poultry and unprocessed red meat can be eaten in moderation.

4. Eat fewer processed foods.

It’s best to minimize your intake of ultra-processed foods such as chips, candy, soda and packaged snack cakes — basically anything containing ingredients like artificial flavours, hydrogenated oils and emulsifiers.

5. Cook at Home more.

Take a break from those nightly takeout orders. Take-out and restaurant meals are often high in sugar, sodium and unhealthy fat — not to mention the portion sizes can be excessive. When you’re preparing your own food, however, you’re in charge of the ingredients that go into each meal to assure they align with your health goals.

6. Make a Nutrition checklist.

Make sure all the 5 major food groups have an appearance. (How many servings of fruits did you have today? Did any of your meals contain healthy fats like avocado, olive oil, or nuts?) Keep notes on how many servings of each food group you had-it’s the best way to ensure you get everything you need while avoiding empty-calorie foods.

7. Understand Meal portions.

Three ounces of meat is about the size of a deck of cards, a half cup of grains is roughly the size of your palm, and one cup of veggies is equivalent to a medium-sized fist. Stick to those approximate measurements so you don’t eat too much.

8. Follow the 80-20 rule

Because creating healthy habits takes time, be sure to leave room for error during your weight-loss journey. The idea is simple: just eat healthfully 80 per cent of the time and leave 20 per cent of the time to splurge. That way, you won’t feel guilty and stressed if you happen to nab a slice of pizza at your cousin’s backyard party.

Just try to keep the bar high on your indulgences. For example, make your own homemade desserts using quality ingredients instead of buying those packaged, processed cakes.

Here are my 9 personal things I do instead of counting calories:

1. I always eat when I’m hungry.

2. I eat foods that I’m actually in the mood to eat.

3. I put my full attention on the meal in front of me.

4. I sit down when I eat.

5. I chew every bite before taking another.

6. I enjoy the flavours, texture, mouthfeel, sounds, richness, crunchiness or softness, saltiness or sweetness.

7. I make an effort to eat healthy foods and make an equal effort to eat the healthy foods that taste good to me.

8. I sometimes choose to eat foods purely for the please of eating them, even when they are not “healthy”.

9. I sometimes choose to eat more food than is comfortable, either because the food tastes really good or because I know I won’t have time to eat again for a while (such as during a busy workday).

It’s empowering to know that your body knows best. It validates all of those signals your body sends you a moment to moment, even the urge to eat a little something extra at the end of a meal.

Now before you go, I’d love to hear your opinion in the comments below.