A lot of the foods we eat today are tasty but come at the cost of increased calorie intake and diminished quantities of essential nutrients. And often ditching these foods means having to start eating foods with no flavor. Well, you’re in for a pleasant surprise because there are options out there that not only taste great but are also loaded with the nutrients you need. Here are 6 food hacks involving such tasty alternatives that are likely to make healthy eating easier for you.
1. Switch From Butter To Avocado
Worried about all that butter and cheese you’re eating? Here’s a trick that is likely to work brilliantly in your favor. Start replacing the butter and cheese in your foods with avocado slowly. While there’s no denying that this fruit contains fat, it is the beneficial kind, which improves the absorption of other nutrients.1 Avocados are also incredibly fibrous, providing 6.7 g of fiber in every 100 g, and rich in nutrients like vitamins K, C, and B6, potassium, and folate.2 This fruit is also a great option for you if you’re lactose intolerant and can’t stomach dairy products.
2. Replace Salt With Seaweed
Eating too much salt has, for the longest time, been known to be dangerous for your heart as it increases the chances of heart disease and stroke.3 So, one way to lower your risk of such problems is to reduce your salt intake and replacing it with healthier alternatives. Seaweed, a popular ingredient in Asian food, is becoming increasingly popular as one. It’s salty taste combined with health benefits like increased glucose and lipid absorption make it an ideal salt substitute.4
3. Swap White Flour With Oats
If you love baking, you might want to ditch the white flour you usually use. White flour is refined with chemicals and, as a result, devoid of most of its fiber and nutrients. Replacing it with ground oats could do wonders for you. Every 100 g of oats gives you 15.4 g of fiber and 17.3 g of protein, while 100 g of white flour gives you a measly 2.7 g of fiber and 10.33 g of protein.5 6 So, add ground oats to your homemade pancakes and cookies instead of white flour the next time you bake to enjoy tasty treats rich in protein and fiber.
4. Substitute Mashed Potato With Mashed Cauliflower
Love mashed potato? You might want to limit your intake because even the homemade kind can give you a lot of excess calories. Try mashed cauliflower instead. Besides lowering your calorie intake significantly, mashed cauliflower can also provide you with sufficient vitamin C, which is crucial for immune system functioning.7 100 g of mashed potato with butter gives you 113 kcal and 6 mg of vitamin C, while 100 g of mashed cauliflower gives you only 23 kcal and as much as 44.3 mg of vitamin C.8 9
5. Switch From Roasted Peanuts To Edamame
Roasted peanuts taste delish without a doubt. But eating too much of them could alarmingly increase your calorie intake. Although a great source of protein, roasted peanuts give you as many as 578 kcal and 48.62 g of fat per 100 g.10 If you’re looking to ditch the excess fat and calories you’re getting from roasted peanuts, try edamame beans. They provide significantly fewer calories (109 kcal) and as low as 4.73 g of fat per 100 g. They’re also a better source of iron, providing 2.11 mg of the mineral per 100 g.11
6. Ditch Alcohol For Coconut Water
While all that booze can make Friday nights fun, it could spell trouble for your calorie and water levels. Ditch those damaging concoctions and take to coconut water instead. Besides being incredibly refreshing, coconut water is also a great source of minerals like potassium and sodium, which are crucial for maintaining electrolyte balance in your body, thus keeping you hydrated. Not just that, it’s also a boon if you are on a strict diet, providing as low as 19 kcal and about 3.7 g of carbohydrates per 100 g.12
Try out these simple but effective food hacks today if you’re looking to enjoy healthy eating.
|↑1||Unlu, Nuray Z., Torsten Bohn, Steven K. Clinton, and Steven J. Schwartz. “Carotenoid absorption from salad and salsa by humans is enhanced by the addition of avocado or avocado oil.” The Journal of nutrition 135, no. 3 (2005): 431-436.|
|↑2||Full Report (All Nutrients): 09037, Avocados, raw, all commercial varieties. United States Department of Agriculture.|
|↑3||Salt: the facts. NHS Choices.|
|↑4||Brownlee, Iain, Andrew Fairclough, Anna Hall, and Jenny Paxman. “The potential health benefits of seaweed and seaweed extract.” (2012): 119-136.|
|↑5||Full Report (All Nutrients): 20033, Oat bran, raw. United States Department of Agriculture.|
|↑6||Full Report (All Nutrients): 20081, Wheat flour, white, all-purpose, enriched, bleached. United States Department of Agriculture.|
|↑7||Vitamin C. National Institutes of Health Office of Dietary Supplements.|
|↑8||Full Report (All Nutrients): 11934, Potatoes, mashed, home-prepared, whole milk and butter added. United States Department of Agriculture.|
|↑9||Full Report (All Nutrients): 11761, Cauliflower, cooked, boiled, drained, with salt. United States Department of Agriculture.|
|↑10||Full Report (All Nutrients): 16396, Peanuts, virginia, oil-roasted, without salt. United States Department of Agriculture.|
|↑11||Full Report (All Nutrients): 11211, Edamame, frozen, unprepared. United States Department of Agriculture.|
|↑12||Full Report (All Nutrients): 12119, Nuts, coconut water (liquid from coconuts). United States Department of Agriculture.|