Since it is January and we are in the most commercial month of #healthgoals I thought I would write about #health.
This year is my year of not being an extremist. When it comes to my health, I find that anytime I try too hard, or am too restrictive or extreme, I can’t keep up with those restrictions in the long term. Yet the only way to get real results is in the long term. Remember, there are no quick fixes. This is a marathon, not a sprint.
One of the best ways to stay on track with your #healthgoals is by finding healthy alternatives to some of your favorite foods.
Also, finding healthier alternatives for the things you love will not only keep you on the prize but will also keep you happy and sane. Nothing makes me more stressed out or straight up cranky then looking at a bowl of spinach and raw veggies and telling myself I have to eat that to be healthy. You can be healthy and still enjoy versions of your favorite foods.
So instead of saying no to pizza or pasta ever, I am going to say, try bean pasta instead! Or instead of no sweets at all, try this “healthy” dessert. This way, you get the best of both worlds!
So let’s dive into some of my faves.
Lettuce wraps instead of regular wraps.
I love wraps and sandwiches so much and I still eat them, but not every day. If I do have a normal sandy it’s typically on a weekend, with a chicken cutlet and lots of mayo… But if I have a hankering for one on a weekday, I will just use iceberg or romaine lettuce as a wrap instead! My favorite way to eat a lettuce wrap is with tuna or chicken salad, a pickle, and hot sauce inside. My mouth is actually watering just thinking of it…
Cauliflower crust pizza instead of dough.
I legitimately have this every single Friday and I don’t even care that it’s not real dough. I use this recipe I found off Epicurious and am so obsessed.
Pizza may be one of my favorite foods ever, and this is just the best way to eat it guilt-free. My favorite cauliflower crust is from Trader Joe’s, but my husband’s favorite is through the Caulipower brand. That crust is way more like an actual thin crust pizza, but I still prefer my TJ’s brand.
Bean Pasta, Brown Rice Pasta, or Whole Wheat Pasta over white pasta.
Pasta also is life, not to mention the easiest thing to whip together on a weeknight. Before the genius invention of bean pasta, I didn’t have pasta, like ever. I was able to convince myself I was okay with it and I wasn’t upset, but deep down, I missed me some noodles. Any of those pasta alternatives mentioned I will eat at LEAST once a week, and I love every second of it. My favorite brands are the Red Lentil Bean Penne Pasta at Trader’s and their Brown Rice/Quinoa Spaghetti. I think they have the best consistency.
Almond Mozzarella Cheese instead of REAL Mozzarella.
Now I am not going to say that alternate cheese substitutes are the same as some fresh mozz. There is nothing that compares to fresh mozzarella melting on your pizza. So now that we have made that clear, Trader Joe’s Almond Mozzarella cheese has been the next best thing for me. It melts nicely, it tastes good, so in my mind, it is a good alternative.
Veggies and hummus or guac instead of chips.
I LOVE snacking on hummus and guac, and I especially love to do it with tortilla chips. But then I tend to accidentally eat an entire bag… so to avoid that, I will just cut up veggies instead. My favorites are carrots, cucumbers, grape tomatoes, snap peas, and bell peppers. =]
Seltzer instead of soda.
I honestly feel like I shouldn’t even put this on here because does anyone even drink soda anymore?! But, in case you are among the few that do, just stop that right now and substitute it out with some bubbly seltzer. It gives that same cold refreshing fun in your mouth, minus the pounds of sugar and chemicals.
Berries and whipped cream instead of ice cream for dessert.
This is honestly my favorite dessert. I add some dark chocolate chips to mine for extra deliciousness, and I use fat-free whipped cream or there is a fun new coconut whipped cream at TJ’s that I have been loving. It’s light, cool, gives that little kick of dairy and sweetness with the chocolate.
Peanut butter protein balls instead of cookies.
These may not be cookies, but I promise you they are as addicting. If you go on Pinterest and search peanut butter protein balls you will find a million versions of this. Though, I do plan on sharing my VERY basic version soon. 😉
Living a healthy life means consistently choosing the healthiest option that is available, and being consistent. Consistency is key. Having healthy alternatives allows us to both choose the best option, and to do it consistently without feeling deprived. =]