If you substitute 1 cup of squash for 1 cup of pasta, you save 179 calories. Spaghetti squash contains Vitamin A, several of the essential B vitamins, Vitamin C, E, and K. It’s also lower in carbohydrates than pasta, and it’s high in manganese, calcium, copper, and zinc.
Skim Milk for Almond,Hemp, or Coconut Milk
Unsweetened plant-based milk isn’t fortified with synthetic vitamins, contains less calories, less sugar, and has no additives that is found in dairy milk. Try it, you may be surprised how much better your tummy feels if you decrease the dairy in your diet. Humans are not made to digest lactose, hence why so many of us are lactose intolerant. You only absorb 30% of the calcium found in dairy, vs. the 100% you absorb from plants. Dairy is known to cause bloating and acne, so leave cow’s milk for exactly what it’s intended for – baby cows!
Gatorade/Energy Drinks for Coconut Water
Coconut water is nature’s sport drink. It contains the same vitamins, minerals, and electrolytes that sports and energy drinks have, but in their natural form. Coconut water also lacks syrups, sweeteners, additives, and the sugars these other beverages contain. Grab some next post-workout to rehydrate and refuel!
Latte for Organic Black Coffee with Coconut Oil
If you’re looking for empty calories and tons of sugar, then grab a latte. Unfortunately, coffee is also loaded with GMO’s so choosing an organic brand will free you of the extra chemicals. Coffee is very high in antioxidants, and adding some healthy fats to it will promote healthy ph levels and will improve your cognitive functioning, while eliminating the “crash” after your coffee wears off.
Margarine for Butter or Ghee
I can’t believe it’s not butter! Well, start believing…it’s NOT. It’s fake food made in a lab and it’s loaded with trans fats, which are known to clog arteries and increase cholesterol levels. Real butter and Ghee, or clarified butter, is packed with a variety of vitamins and trace minerals. The fat found in butter is great for boosting your immune system and metabolism. If you don’t do dairy, Ghee is butter with the milk solids removed.
Sugar for Cinnamon
Sugar causes inflammation and inflammation leads to diseases. Plus, sugar makes you fat. Instead, spice things up with cinnamon, which is a natural antioxidant and anti-inflammatory, more so than garlic and oregano. It does the exact opposite of what the damage of sugar does, and it also reduces blood sugar levels, which helps fight diseases such as Type 2 Diabetes. Just the smell of cinnamon alone can increase cognitive function by 15%!
Sour cream for Greek Yogurt
Baked potatoes, dips, tacos…before you reach for the sour cream, which has no nutritional benefits, grab some plain Greek yogurt and add salt, pepper, and a squeeze of lemon or lime juice. If your indulging in some Greek food, make your own yogurt dressing by also adding some dill and shredded cucumber. You will boost your protein for the day and you will save yourself a good amount of calories and fat. Plus, yogurt is chock full of probiotics which aids in digestive health.
Store Bought Salad Dressing for Olive Oil and Apple Cider Vinegar
Don’t be fooled by the “reduced fat” or “lite” dressings; that’s all just a marketing scheme to steer you towards that product. Even “Fat Free” items still contain under a certain percentage of fat, so save the calories, additives, sugar, and your money by making your own dressing. A little olive oil and vinegar goes a long way. You can swap out the apple cider for any other vinegar or even lemon juice. A pinch of salt and pepper and you’re ready to chow down on that super healthy salad.
Iceberg Lettuce for Spinach,Chard, Kale, and Romaine
Iceberg lettuce is the most eaten “vegetable” in the USA. Unfortunately, there are almost no vitamins and minerals in it. So that salad of yours doesn’t quite give you the nutritional benefits you think you are getting. Chop up some fresh kale, swiss chard, spinach or romaine lettuce. Watercress is also very high in vitamins. These leafy greens are great options and they taste great paired with your everyday salad items.
Cheese for Nutritional Yeast
Yes, cheese is amazing. Many of us would bathe in it if it was socially acceptable, myself included. However, cheese can contribute to inflammation and acne and if you’re lactose intolerant, cheese is out of the picture. Even if you’re a cheese lover, its beneficial to switch things up once in awhile. Nutritional Yeast is a powdery cheese substitute that can be sprinkled over foods or whipped into a quick and tasty cheese sauce. Its high in vitamin B12, which is responsible for metabolism and energy. If you’re vegan or vegetarian, this is the food for you. If you’re obsessed with cheese, just think of Nutritional yeast as a cruelty-free cheese.
French Fries for Sweet Potato Fries
Potatoes aren’t bad, but if you are looking for food with more nutrients and less calories, opt for sweet potato fries instead. You may decide you like their sweetness more anyway! They are loaded with fiber and vitamins and they help keep blood glucose levels balanced.
White Rice – Cauliflower Rice
Cauliflower has been linked to cancer prevention due to its ability to detox, work as an antioxidant and an anti-inflammatory. It also balances your hormones, aids in weight loss, and regulates digestion. Grate some into a pan with olive oil and minced garlic and sauté. Add in other veggies and sprinkle in some nutritional yeast for a vitamin packed meal or side dish!
Croutons for Toasted Nuts
Save yourself the carbs and throw some raw or toasted nuts onto of your salad. They give you the protein, the omega 3 fatty acids for your heart, and they give that little crunch to your meal that helps replace the croutons. Always grab the unsalted ones; cashews, walnuts, and almonds taste the best and are the best for you.
Hungry for me? Read our other blog posts or stop into Personal 1 Fitness and ask your trainers and nutritionists for more tips, tricks, and yummy recipes.