Many individuals are becoming more aware of the importance of a healthy diet and lifestyle. Clean eating is a movement of taking your diet back to the basics, and cutting out all the extras such as processed and packaged meals, fast food and refined flours and sugars.
When you begin eating clean, you will likely deal with cravings for the old, unhealthy foods you used to fill yourself with. It helps to have a list of healthy alternatives that you can eat instead. Here are some ideas for substitutions of some of the common culprits in our modern diet.
Table Salt and Unhealthy Sauces
Instead of covering your meal in ketchup, barbecue sauce, or salt, cook it with herbs and spices. When your meal is filled with various flavors, your taste buds will not feel as though they are lacking in any way. As an added bonus, herbs contain many vitamins that will benefit your body in a variety of ways.
There are many ways to satisfy your sweet tooth when eating clean. If you are baking, use unsweetened apple sauce instead of sugar. If you are looking for something clean to add to your coffee and give it a great taste, try stevia. There is even flavoured stevia that you can add to your coffee and water to give it just the right amount of sweetness and a pleasant flavor. Maple sugar flakes are delicious, and taste great sprinkled over any item – giving you a burst of satisfying flavor without the downsides of refined sugar.
Apple sauce is a good replacement not only for sugar, but for oil as well. Flaxseed oil is a great replacement for the more commonly used and less healthy oils that many individuals have in their pantries. If using flaxseed oil, only use it in recipes that will not be heated. Yogurt is another nutrition-filled alternative to oil in your recipes, and it adds a little protein to your baking at the same time.
When you are craving a bowl of spaghetti, what better substitute is there to use than spaghetti squash? Simply cook the squash in the oven, cut it in half and scrape the insides out. Cover it with fresh tomato sauce and steamed vegetables for a dish that is both filling and loaded with nutrition.
Instead of drinking cow’s milk, which can cause reactions for many and is less than palatable to many individuals, try unsweetened almond milk. This substitute is a great clean alternative to drink and use in your baking, and can even be made from fresh, soaked almonds. Unsweetened coconut and soy milk are alternatives for cow’s milk as well, so try several and then stick with whatever you prefer.
We eat many foods that are not assisting us in our journey toward health, but fortunately there are many substitutes for almost any food we may be trying to cut out of our diets. By simply being creative and doing your research, you can find more ideas on foods that are a better option than what you are using currently. Try these ideas and start on your clean-eating journey now.