Everyone knows that when you’re trying to eat well, whole-wheat bread is generally a better choice than white bread, and that you should opt for sparkling water over soda. But what about more creative ways to up your nutrition game? Here are a few of our favorite food stand-ins, along with lifestyle tweaks that will inspire you to make healthier choices.
Fermented Foods vs. Probiotic Supplements:
Many experts agree that probiotic supplements are beneficial. But you can also get probiotics from eating fermented foods. Beginners will love pickled vegetables, sauerkraut and kimchi, while more adventurous eaters can try tempeh, miso and kefir.
Avocado Spread vs. Cheese:
Ditch the cheese and crackers, and reach for a snack with heart-healthy fats, nutrients like potassium, and no cholesterol. Mash a ripe avocado with a fork, spread it onto a whole-grain cracker, and top with tomato or cucumber slices, or perhaps smoked salmon.
Mashed Cauliflower vs. Mashed Potatoes:
Mashed potatoes have almost three times the calories and carbohydrates as cauliflower, not to mention getting their flavor from butter and cream. Opt for mashed cauliflower instead, mixing in roasted garlic and buttermilk for extra flavor.
Bison vs. Beef:
Not only is bison ranching easier on the environment, bison meat is also significantly lower in saturated fat and calories than beef, while maintaining similar levels of protein, vitamin B12 and iron.
Tip: Bison is leaner, so shorten cooking times to ensure it doesn’t get dry.
Kombucha vs. Coffee:
Trying to cut back on coffee? Kombucha is a great option. The fermented tea beverage comes with an added probiotic benefit. Other healthy coffee substitutions include green tea, unsweetened chai tea and green smoothies.
Chopsticks vs. Silverware:
Eating with chopsticks might be a challenge, but it will slow down eating speed, encourage smaller bites and help you feel full faster.
Medium Plate vs. Large Plate:
Filling a medium-sized plate (about 10 inches) can save more than 20 percent of the calories compared to the portions you’d eat filling a larger plate.
Pack Your Lunch vs. Eating Out:
Exchange hidden-calorie lunches and vending-machine snacks for a lunch you choose at home.
Doggy Bag vs. Eating It All:
Have your server wrap up half of your meal before it even leaves the kitchen. You’ll save yourself from overeating and have another meal ready to go.