I love food as much as the next girl, but from time to time we forget to watch what we eat. Sometimes, even the smallest food swaps can make a big difference in eating healthy (especially if you want to be swimsuit ready this summer!). But one thing is for sure, I won’t ever sacrifice flavor and now, you don’t have to either! I’ve listed a few simple changes you can make to your diet to keep you looking and feeling hot.
The Swap: Burger Patty
Summer means it’s grilling season. Everyone loves a good burger, but sometimes a little too much red meat isn’t the most healthy choice. But, don’t be sad because Portobello mushrooms are an excellent alternative! They have fewer calories if you compare 30 calories in a mushroom per 3 ounces to a hamburger that carries about 250 calories. Portobello mushrooms are packed with vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants, plus you get to skip all of that fat you would ingest in a normal burger patty. To really kick your taste buds into high gear, grill the mushroom with some garlic and thyme…Mmm. Then, cook some onions with a bit of honey, pepper, and red wine vinegar and throw that on top of the mushroom. Finally, whisk a bit of horseradish and yogurt together to create a creamy, spicy spread. Slather that baby on a whole-wheat bun and BAM! You’ve just set yourself up for food-rockin’ party time.
The Swap: Salad Dressing
With all of the fresh produce available, salads are a great healthy option for your diet. I know most people love to drown their lettuce in ranch dressing, but is that really necessary? Most definitely not! Instead, try squeezing some fresh lemon juice over your salad. Lemon juice has no calories and brings enough flavor to satisfy a full bowl of greens. Here is a quick an easy salad recipe you will love: just mix spinach leaves, fresh cucumbers, tomatoes, peppers, onions, lean turkey, strawberries, avocado and a dash of feta cheese with garlic. Then, squeeze on the lemon juice to your desired amount. If you’re still not satisfied you can also add some salsa. Salsa is also a good low-calorie choice loaded with lots of flavor flav.
The Swap: Potatoes
Let’s face it-when you eat a solid white baked potato, you’re probably going to smother it in butter, cheese and sour cream. Eating it plain won’t do the trick for you, will it? So, why not try a sweet potato? They’re high in fiber and vitamin A and are perfectly delicious all by themselves. Cut them into chunks, put them in the oven and you get yummy fries. You can even slice them super thin and create your own sweet potato chips. Or you can try my personal favorite (seriously, you will go to foodie heaven!)…Bake a sweet potato in the oven and then top it off with black beans, veggies and salsa. I’m actually craving it right now because it’s THAT amazing.
The Swap: Sundae
I have to confess that I’m a chocoholic. No surprise there, and I’ll bet I’m not alone. Don’t try to hide it because I see that guilty look on your face! Don’t worry I have the perfect solution for you! Skip the cookie crumbs, the fudge, and the brownie. Instead, heat up a cup or more (go crazy!) of raspberries and throw a scoop of vanilla ice cream on top. That’s it! Hot raspberries and vanilla ice cream. Fruit has never tasted so good. I promise.
As a bonus, here are some more “swapable” foods that will kick start your healthy diet:
- Sub hummus for mayo on sandwiches.
- Put real fruit in plain oatmeal instead of buying the fruit-flavored oatmeal (cut out the sugar).
- Eat brown rice, not white rice.
- Make thin crust pizza instead of deep dish.
- Snack on nuts instead of potato chips.
I hope these tips make it easier for you to enjoy a healthier lifestyle. You can thank me later.