I’m asked about my diet a lot but what people SHOULD ask me is what I use to substitute so that I not only stay sane while on a calorie deficiency, but also give into my cravings pretty much whenever I want (in a healthy way).
The main thing to remember is moderation first, substitutes second. If you over-eat on anything you’ll gain weight so just remember to keep everything to a minimum. No you don’t have to eat plain chicken and broccoli to lose weight! Here are my favorite healthy substitutes!
- Use LEAN beef or ground turkey (93/7, 95/5, 99/1, etc). Whatever you can find that is leanest. It may cost $1-2 more but is a truckload healthier than 75/80/85!
- Use FAT FREE/LIGHT/HOMEMADE salad dressings. Not only can you use these on salad…but anything (even as a marinade)
- Butter Buds instead of Butter. No fat/cholesterol and as close to butter as you can get
- Eat turkey/chicken breasts instead of the whole bird/dark meat (a lot less fat)
- Crystal Light/Unsweetened teas (or anything similar) instead of sugary juices/teas
- Use FAT FREE cheeses
- Unsweetened apple sauce is a great substitute for oil/butter/sugar when baking (my favorite)
- Bananas are also a great substitute for oil/butter/sugar when baking
- Mashed avocado is another great substitute for oil/butter when baking
- Minced prunes instead of butter in darker baked goods such as brownies works great!
- Skim milk instead of whole
- Coconut milk or almond milk is a great low-calorie, cheap and healthy alternative to regular milk
- Sugar free pancake syrup (yes, there is such a thing!)
- Do you need your flavored syrups used in coffee? Well there are also sugar free alternatives of this as well!
- Sugar free chocolate syrup or cocoa powder instead of regular chocolate syrup
- Lower or sodium free soy sauce which they also have at restaurants if you ask
- Love salt? Well most places actually have a “sodium free salt” called NO SALT
- Love sugar? Well as I’m sure almost everyone knows to use artificial sweeteners (I prefer Stevia). Keep the sweeteners to a minimum though. It’s all about moderation
- Use FAT FREE plain Greek yogurt or FAT FREE sour cream instead of regular sour cream
- FAT FREE plain Greek yogurt is also great as a mayo substitute
- Mashed avocado is another great mayo substitute
- Oat flour, almond flour, coconut flour, whole wheat flour, or soy flour instead of regular flour
- If your recipe calls for a whole egg – use 2 egg whites instead to cut down on the fat
- Eat dried fruit instead of candy! You’ll kill that sugar craving and remain healthy (+ full of fiber) at the same time
- Rolled oats work great as bread crumbs! If you blend them up a bit they work even better
- Natural peanut butter instead of regular. Read the ingredient list on it…it should just be roasted peanuts, salt, palm oil, sugar (or less)
- Dark chocolate (if you are going to have chocolate) instead of regular chocolate
- Sweet potato fries instead of regular fries (not only are they loaded with fibers and vitamins, they taste better IMO!)
- Frozen yogurt is a great alternative to ice cream if you love ice cream as much as I do
I’ll add to this as things come to me or I find more great substitutes. If you have any substitutes you swear by, go ahead and post them below so I can try/add them to this list!
This list was last updated on 11/19/2012