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Monday, May 19

10 Healthy swaps you should be making right now!

SWAP: CEREAL

Most cereals are full of sugar and other unnecessary ingredients, which can cause you to have a mid-morning crash and be hungry again before lunch time. This can encourage overeating throughout the day, affect your energy and concentration levels and change your mood.

Alternative: Try porridge, Weetabix or Shredded Wheat. If you're used to a sugary start to your day, try adding a bit of fruit or honey to add a sweet twist.


SWAP: BAKED BEANS

Baked beans are a good source of protein and fibre. They are an extremely versatile food, which can be added to a variety of meals or eaten alone. However, beans tend to have a lot of added salt and sugar, which can deter from these benefits.

Alternative: Why not change your baked beans to a low salt and sugar variation? I think they do taste a little different, but I like to add chestnut mushrooms and a spoon of chilli jam to make a delicious meal with toast.

SWAP: JAR & PACKET SAUCES

Jar & packet sauces are another product unfortunately full of added salts and sugars. Pre-made sauces tend to be the go to item for speed and convenience, but the alternatives can be just as quick as opening the jar and heating it up.

Alternative: Tinned tomatoes or yoghurt with spices. Depending on your meal, these alternatives are simply a case of open and pour, just like your jars; except you can add a few herbs and spices to flavour it to your tastes. For pasta dishes, try adding tinned tomatoes and basil. For Indian dishes, I like to make a little curry paste out of spices and a splash of water and then add in fat-free natural yoghurt.


SWAP: VEGETABLE OIL SPREAD

There has always been debate around whether butter or margarine is better for you, but there are different types of butter and margarine. If you use butter, stick to an unsalted kind. If you use margarine, avoid vegetable oil spreads, which are high in trans fats. These fats are bad for your heart.

Alternative: Instead, try using an olive oil spread as this contains healthy monounsaturated fats and Vitamin E.

SWAP: CRISPS

Most people are either a chocolate person or a crisp person; some people like both together. Mostly everyone should know by now to swap chocolate for a dark chocolate, preferably 70% minimum cocoa and to eat it in moderation. Crisps however often go unexplored and the only option is to go for a baked option, over fried.

Alternative: Crunchy carrot, cucumber, pepper and celery sticks. If you like the crunch of a good packet of crisps, why not try these for an alternative? Just be sure not to make dip your new nemesis.

SWAP: DIPS

People put sauces on chips, burgers, salads, meats and sandwiches. They're everywhere and another one of life's convenient additions to a meal. Mayonnaise, tomato ketchup, brown sauce, salad cream and other dips tend to contain a lot of sugars and saturated fats, which is one of the bad kinds.

Alternative: Why not swap your favourite sauce for fat-free natural yoghurt, it is equally delicious on all of the above and you could try adding a dash of paprika, Worcester sauce, tomato puree or curry powder for a delicious twist.


SWAP: TORTILLA WRAPS

Although tortilla wraps can be a healthier alternative to some breads, they are typically high in carbohydrate and carry no fibre content.

Alternative: Try putting your tortilla contents in a lettuce cup for a refreshing and healthy twist.

SWAP: FIZZY DRINKS (EVEN DIET)

We all know fizzy drinks are laden with sugar and calories, but diet drinks are not much better. Although they are a better alternative if you insist on your fizzy drink intake, they still contain sweeteners and these can trigger an appetite which makes you pile on the pounds due to eating more.

Alternative: Fruit juice and sparkling water. This variation will still give you the fizz taste you crave, but without all of the additional sugars. Go easy on the fruit juice as these contain natural sugars and you should still drink this alternative in moderation as sparkling waters tend to contain sweeteners too, if you go for a flavoured kind. I love Tropicana with Apple and Raspberry sparkling water.

SWAP: YOUR PLATE

Do you fill your plate every meal time and eat it all out of habit?

Alternative: This is very simple, use a smaller plate. We could all do with reducing our portion sizes and by using a smaller plate; you can still fill it and eat it all. You should feel just as full as you have eaten enough, rather than overeating; which you probably don't even realise you currently do.

SWAP: THE FRYING PAN

Finally, stop frying everything. Convenience controls the way we cook and the foods we eat, but with a little bit of preparation and planning there is no reason why we can't switch to other cooking methods.

Alternative: Try using a steamer or grill to cook your meats and vegetables.

 
I hope I've given you some suggestions to make a couple of healthy changes with your eating habits here. Do you have any suggestions for healthy swaps? Let us know in the comments section below.


Kayleigh x




You will only ever come second if you try to be someone else, but you will always win 1st place at being yourself