When our bodies are conditioned to eating a certain way, it’s not something that will change over night. You’ll find yourself eating healthier for a few days, maybe even weeks and end up right back in the BK drive thru. We’ve all been there. Whenever someone asks me how they can start eating better, my response is always the same. Baby steps.You’d be surprised how the smallest change can impact your diet. I started by swapping some of the items I buy frequently for healthier alternatives.
Replace butter with olive, flaxseed or grapeseed oil. Stay away from canola and vegetable oil. They claim to be healthier cooking alternatives but are just genetically modified crap. Smart Balance has a nice variety of oils and when I do buy butter, it’s definitely that brand. Their butter is dairy free and non GMO.
Replace with Whole grain/wheat bread. White bread is heavily processed and has little to no nutritional value.
We’ve been conditioned to believe that cow’s milk is necessary for human growth but it’s simply not and has health risks. We can get as much calcium from whole grains and veggies. Replace cow milk with almond, rice, hazelnut, walnut, or cashew milk. You can use them in your cereal, oatmeal, coffee, smoothies and pancake mix.
Replace your Sprite or Pepsi with fruit infused water. Add some fresh berries, citrus fruit or my favorite, cucumber. This may be easier said than done for some but over time your body will become less dependent on artificial sweeteners. Soda is also very acidic and our bodies need to be more alkaline.
Chocolate is something I don’t see myself giving up anytime soon. It’s usually first on my grocery list. Replace milk chocolate with dark because it’s better for you. Dark chocolate has more of the original cocoa content and is one of the best sources of antioxidants. As a child I hated dark chocolate because of the bitter taste but I’ve grown to love it. Whole foods has a huge variety of dark chocolate from walnuts to coconut. Try them all, you won’t regret it.
I still eat the occasional bag of chips but there are definitely healthier options. Next time you’re in the store, grab some vegetable (kale, spinach, beet) or apple chips. You should also try whole grain tortilla chips or popcorn.
My favorite substitutes for eggs are flax powder+water and applesauce. Here’s a chart I found online of some other alternatives:
There are a lot of mock meat and cheese brands on the market. It’s just a matter or trial and error to find which ones fit you best. I personally went through 4 cheeses before stumbling upon the Field Roast brand.
I don’t purchase mock meats because I’m skeptical of many of the ingredients ( soy for example) but I do use things like beans, quinoa and chickpeas in place of meat in my dishes. On my blog you’ll find things like meatless meatballs and meatless tacos.
So delicious and Silk have some great products. You’ll also find brands like Ben and Jerry’s and Breyer’s have dairy free or “lactose free” versions of their products.
The majority of every section you visit will have a vegan option as stores as becoming more vegan friendly. If I missed anything, let me know. We can check out some of the alternatives.