REAL Healthy Eating
Easy Tips on Healthy Eating Options with LOVE SWEAT & FITNESS
One of the hardest parts of getting healthy is trying to figure out healthy eating options. There are so many different opinions on this topic that it makes it difficult to sort through them all. Eat carbs. Don’t eat carbs. Fat-free is good. Fat-free is bad. The lists go on and on.
If you have purchased my nutrition guide, you know that I promote a healthy balanced lifestyle. I am a huge fan of clean eating, but I realize that it may not always be convenient to only eat whole foods all day every day. When you’re on the go or meeting friends out it can be hard to know what meals are best to choose. Even at home it’s sometimes challenging to know how to make our “go-to” meals a bit healthier.
That’s where my Real Healthy swaps come in.
Top 10 Dining Out Swaps
1. Cheeseburger & Fries
Instead, order a turkey or veggie burger on a bed of lettuce or steamed spinach with seasonal veggies or even baked sweet potato fries!
Cheeseburger vs. Veggie Burger
Sorry Chicago, it’s gotta be thin crust! Try ditching the greasy pepperoni and smothering processed cheese for grilled chicken, veggies and maybe a little feta. You will walk away feeling way lighter and less guilty about your dinner.
Thick Crust vs. Thin Crust
3. Taco Tuesday
This is one of my favorite nights! Just ask for your tacos in lettuce cups or lettuce wrapped instead of a standard tortilla. I also ditch the cheese. Believe me, once you get that guac and salsa you will not miss it!
Tacos Shells vs. Lettuce Wrap
4. Fried Chicken / Chicken Strips
Go Grilled! I used to LOVE crispy buffalo strips. When I was trying to make small changes this was one of the first to go. Instead, get grilled chicken with the sauces on the side. This way you watch how much sauce you consume and enjoy the flavors without the fried fat!
Fried Chicken vs Grilled Chicken
5. Cobb Salad
While they might be delicious, there is really nothing great to offer your body here. Iceberg lettuce, blue cheese and bacon don’t really scream healthy. Do they? Stick with leafy greens and ALWAYS get the dressing on the side (and try not to use it all).
Cobb Salad vs. Leafy Greens & Grilled Chicken
6. Snacks to Share
This usually ends up being chips, dips, and inches on your hips. Ditch the chips and breads for veggies! You get the delicious dips you ordered it for without the unnecessary processed carbohydrates.
Chips & Dip vs. Hummus & Veggies
7. Steak & Mashed Potatoes
If this is your go-to celebration meal there are ways you can enjoy the steakhouse and still make it a bit healthier. I suggest getting a small 4oz stake or even swapping it for a grilled fish or chicken. As far as the sides go, you will be better off with a sweet potato or grilled veggie side. While regular potatoes might be a more traditional side, they do not offer as much nutritionally as the other options.
Steak & Mashed Potatoes vs Grilled Salmon & Veggies
Don’t be fooled. While it isn’t the worst thing in the world, sushi is usually high in sodium, fat and carbohydrates. So before you order 5 rolls at your next girl’s night, try to substitute some with sashimi. It offers all the flavor and protein of a roll without all the empty calories.
Sushi vs. Sashimi
9. Chicken Fettuccine Alfredo
Sorry girls…This one has got to go! While the chicken is usually grilled (high five) the rest of this dish is pretty much a lose-lose. If you are craving pasta while out at your favorite Italian restaurant, try something new! Go for something lighter and fresh like Pasta Pomodoro with chicken. If you are lucky, they might even offer gluten-free pasta!
Fettuccine Alfredo vs. Pasta Pomodoro
10. Favorite Cocktails
This is one of the easiest ways to completely ruin all of your hard work. Most cocktails are laden with sugary syrups and alcohol. Don’t worry…I’m not saying you have to give up your nights out, but I do have some great swaps so your drinks don’t take such a toll on your body. In general, ditch all simple syrups and sugary mixers like colas and tonics. Stick with clear alcohols and fresh ingredients.
- Margarita Lovers: Go Skinny. No simple syrups or mixes. Just fresh lime and lemon juices, tequila and a splash of soda water.
- Sweet Drinks: If you are looking for something a little sweeter, have the bartender muddle fresh fruits like strawberry, blackberry, lime and mint!
- Beer: Better not. I know most beer lovers are serious about their flavors and suggesting a light beer is probably insulting. I say avoid, avoid, avoid!
Piña Colada vs. Clear & Fresh Ingredients
General Tips for Eating Out
- Avoid the table bread! It will seriously make a big difference!
- Steamed or grilled vs. Sautéed : Veggies & Proteins
- Sauces and dressings on the side
- Swap fried sides for veggies
- When in doubt, cheese is out. As much as you think you love it, when it is in or on a dish you often barely taste it. Try your favorite meals without it and see what I mean. You will barely miss it. Then you won’t feel guilty when you enjoy a piece or two on wine night!
- Take handful of tortilla chips to enjoy and let those be all you eat
- Really want fries, have just a few of a friends instead of ordering your own. People will ALWAYS share!