Improving your diet and eating a little better doesn’t have to be a stressful change. Whether your goal is to lose a little weight, put on some muscle, or just generally be healthier, there are some small changes you can make that will make a huge difference.
Health is not one-size-fits-all, and different nutrition and diet plans will work for different people. However, here are a few general swaps you can make in your daily life as a good starting point towards better health.
Of course, we all know that sugar isn’t great for us and eating too much of it can lead to weight gain, skin problems and even digestive trouble. Sugars come from all kinds of different places, and the natural ones you find in fruit are not what you need to be worried about.
Instead, refined sugars that we add to our coffee, baking, breakfast, etc, are what can become unhealthy and dangerous if we eat too much for them. Swap your regular white sugar for a healthy, natural alternative like monk fruit sweetener which has no calories but will still satisfy your sweet tooth.
Carbs are good for us! They provide us with the energy we need to exercise and focus on our day-to-day tasks at work and home. While some people choose to cut carbs out of their diet for weight loss or any other reason, you don’t need to do this if you enjoy eating them.
However, a simple healthy swap is to start eating whole grains instead of refined starches like white pasta and bread. Rather opt for whole-grain breads and crackers, wholewheat pasta, brown rice, oats and quinoa as your carb sources and your body will thank you for the extra fibre.
Getting our protein in is a vital part of a healthy diet. Meat and animal products are a good and effective way of making sure we consume enough protein each day. However, highly processed meats are often very high in fat and other chemicals that aren’t good for us.
Try switching bacon, hot dogs and corned beef out for natural lean meat sources like canned tuna or smoked chicken breasts. These alternatives are still quick, easy and convenient, but far healthier and usually higher in protein too!
Full Fat Dairy
If you’re looking to improve your heart health and cut back on the calories a little bit, reducing your fat intake is a good place to start. You can switch out your full-fat dairy products for a medium, low-fat or non-fat options to help you achieve this – they still taste great but won’t impact your heart or weight as much.
Another great swap you can make is to try using Greek yoghurt instead of cream or sour cream in certain dishes. Greek yoghurt is lower in fat and full of gut-friendly probiotics, meaning that it will be great for both your weight management as well as your digestive system.