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If you get overwhelmed thinking that you’ll never be able to eat your favorite foods again while leading a healthy lifestyle, you’re wrong. A healthy diet doesn’t have to be viewed as a restrictive diet. There are plenty of natural substitute ingredients to make healthier versions of your favorite things. Which is why I’ve put together this list of substitutes for the most common ingredients.
- Substitute wheat flour for coconut or almond flour when needed in a recipe. In fact, these two aren’t the only substitutes. You can also use hazelnut, tapioca, cassava or yucca, among others, to make bread, cookies, healthy cakes and much more
- Substitute cow’s milk – particularly skimmed milk – for almond milk, cashew milk, or coconut milk. For recipes where you need a creamier consistency than almond milk can give, coconut milk is the perfect substitute.
- Substitute refined sugar and sweeteners for honey or maple syrup in moderation. The basic principle of a natural healthy diet is not to eat other types of sugars, but rather to reduce them to a minimum altogether. However, using raw honey and natural maple syrup can have health benefits when eaten in small amounts.
- Substitute rice or potatoes with cauliflower rice or mashed cauliflower. It is much more nutritious and less caloric. This is a great way to introduce even more veggies in your diet as you can use this as a side or part of another recipe.
- Substitute pasta for some Zoodles or other vegetable-based noodles. They are delicious and versatile! You can eat them hot or cold, with sauce or homemade pesto. You just need a little time to prepare them and that’s it.
- Substitute canola and sunflower oil with quality fats such as coconut oil, olive oil, or organic butter. We should invest in better, more nutritious fats as the ones found in common oils are not the healthiest. Coconut oil has antibacterial properties and is excellent for cooking. Butter also has vitamins and olive oil is one of the best fats for our health.
- Substitute regular potatoes for sweet potato. Sweet potatoes are high-quality tubers, rich in vitamins and antioxidants that will also satisfy those cravings for some “french fries” or nachos. However, it’s also great in puree and other recipes. You can even use it in desserts thanks to its creamy texture and naturally sweet flavor.
- Substitute boxed breakfast cereals for healthy, natural muesli that you can make yourself at home with nuts, maple syrup, butter, and an oven. It has a good shelf life, can be made quickly, and is a healthy option for your children.
- Substitute milk chocolate for pure cocoa or dark chocolate that is at least 85% pure cocoa or more. Milk chocolate is loaded with sugar and milk, and actually has a very low percentage of cocoa. Cocoa itself is pure, and filled with antioxidants and vitamins. It’s very healthy and excellent for cooking.
As you can see there is no shortage of healthy alternatives. I hope with this article and a healthy mindset you can lead this kind of lifestyle for the long term. If you liked this guide or if you have other suggestions of healthier alternatives that you’d like to share let us know in the comments below.