It can be hard to resist unhealthy junk food, especially given how delicious they taste. However, eating too much of unhealthy food can seriously affect your health as well as your mood. It can also lead to eating disorders and weight gain. If you find it difficult to stay away from junk, you can tweak them into something healthier by changing just a few basic ingredients. Here are 10 healthy substitutes for unhealthy food that you should definitely try for a healthier living.
Replace flour with cauliflower for pizza crust
Pizza definitely tops the list of your favorite junk foods. However, if you are eating too much of it, chances are that you are probably overloading on the carbs. You can go easy on the carbs by substituting the regular pizza base with cauliflower dough. Just throw in some cauliflower into the blender to prepare a thick paste. You can, then, use it as the base for your pizza. This substitute is gluten-free, packed with nutrients and has much less calorie count as compared to flour dough. And last but not the least, it tastes absolutely amazing.
Replace mashed potatoes with mashed cauliflower
Mashed potato is a regular item in almost all households. It tastes absolutely delicious especially when paired with some butter and milk. However, it also comes very big on the calorie scale. Replace the potatoes with some boiled cauliflower and you can continue enjoying this dish minus the calories. It cooks very fast and gives you a soft and creamy mixture that tastes just as delicious as the mashed potatoes.
Replace flour noodles with vegetable spirals
Be it pasta or ramen, noodles have become such a familiar staple, that it is impossible to stay away from it no matter how hard you try. However, the massive calorie count of the dish can easily make you feel guilty the moment you finish your bowl. So get yourself a spiralizer and you can turn any of your favorite vegetables into noodles. Carrots, zucchini, cucumber and sweet potatoes are great options as they can be paired with almost anything. You will be able to enjoy all your favorite noodle recipes while still staying in shape.
Replace Fried potato chips with popcorn/kale chips
Chips are very heavy on the oil and salt. This simple snack can do more harm to your body than you even realize. If you are looking for a healthier substitute to this snack, then you can try organic popcorn. The fat content in popcorn is much less than chips. It is also filled with polyphenols and healthy fiber that can prevent the onset of heart diseases. If you are not fond of popcorn, you can also microwave some kale leaves and substitute them for potato chips.
French Fries are definitely very appetizing. However, they can also add a lot of extra pounds to your weight. Furthermore, the saturated fat that is used while frying the snack can increase your cholesterol levels and affect your heart health. To avoid this, you can try French Fries made from sweet potato. You can go easy on the oil and opt for baking instead of deep frying. These fries are loaded with nutrients such as niacin, vitamins A, B5, B6, and riboflavin.
Salads are great when you are trying to maintain a healthy diet. They provide you with all the necessary nutrients while also assisting in the process of weight loss. You may include all the healthiest items in your salad. However, if you do not choose the right dressing, it can ruin the entire purpose of the salad. So instead of using the store-bought dressings, you can try making your own using healthy options such as olive oil, pepper, and fresh herbs. This will allow your body to absorb maximum nutrients from the fruits and vegetables.
Replace cookies with dry fruit
Cookies are definitely your go-to snack whenever you feel hungry. However, these are laden with sugar and unhealthy gats. Furthermore, they are very high on the calorie count. Most often, cookies are made from refined flour, which is definitely not the best thing for your body. You can substitute cookie with dried fruits such as figs, cranberries, apricots, and raisins. These are filling, have a greater nutrient content and also taste great. However, make sure that these fruits have no added sweeteners.
Replace aerated cold drinks with lemon water
Sodas and aerated cold drinks are definitely very satisfying, especially during the hot summer months. However, these drinks have an excess of sugar and artificial preservatives. These can also act as the contributing factors to health issues such as diabetes and obesity. So instead of cold drinks, try going for lemon water. You can also add some lime or orange juice and honey to bring out the taste. You can prepare a jug or a bottle and drink it throughout the day to stay energized and hydrated.
Replace regular ice cream with banana ice cream
Store bought ice creams use a lot of sugar, artificial flavor and coloring. You can try making your own healthy dessert using a frozen banana. One good thing about this recipe is that you do not have to add any extra sugar. However, if you still want to increase the sweetness, you can add some honey. You can also add other ingredients such as nuts, dried fruits, vanilla, chocolate or
peanut butter to make it more interesting. This ice cream will have a texture similar to the regular ice cream but very low on the calories.
Replace regular cake with carrot cake
Instead of going for the store bought cakes, you can make your own healthy cake using carrots and cream frosting. You do not have to use any of the ingredients such as egg, flour or butter. It is simple to prepare and tastes great.
Try going in for these healthy substitutes at least for a few weeks and you start noticing the differences yourself. These are just as enjoyable as the regular snacks but will keep you much healthier physically and mentally. You may never want to go back to your regular snacks.