Weight Loss Food Swap: Eat This Not That
By: Matt Weik
How many times have you told yourself you were going to make better nutritional decisions and drop a few pounds for summer? Maybe you’re getting ready for a big vacation or a special event? While putting yourself in a caloric deficit is going to be the way to achieve your weight loss goal, there are some tips and tricks you can utilize by simply swapping out certain foods for others. I call this the “eat this not that” method where you take an item you may eat on a regular basis and swap it with a better, more healthy option with fewer calories.
It’s time to swap!
Food Swap #1: Lettuce Instead of Bread or Buns
The first thing, and probably something many people consume regularly, is bread. For our first eat this not that, put down the loaf of bread and grab yourself a head of lettuce. No, I’m not crazy. Hear me out.
Rather than making a sandwich or hamburger with bread or a bun, toss the contents between two large leaves of lettuce. You’ll notice you get an incredible crunch from the lettuce not to mention each lettuce leaf you use will only be around 1 calorie – much lower than bread and buns.
Food Swap #2: Spaghetti Squash Instead of Pasta
Next on our list of eat this not that is spaghetti squash. If you’ve never prepared spaghetti squash you’re missing out on an amazing vegetable. Granted, the spaghetti squash itself really doesn’t have a flavor, but that’s the beauty of it. You get a great texture when you prepare spaghetti squash and after you try it, you may never go back to pasta ever again.
100g of spaghetti squash will provide you with only 31 calories as compared to 100g of plain pasta being around 158 calories.
Food Swap #3: Greek Yogurt with Fresh Fruit Instead of Yogurt Cup with Fruit
Next on our eat this not that list is yogurt, but not just any kind of yogurt – Greek yogurt. Far too many people peel back the top of a pre-packaged yogurt cup that contains fruit and added sugars only to be spoon-feeding themselves a cup of diabetes.
When you swap that out for a plain (unflavored) Greek yogurt where you can cut up your own fresh fruit to add, you’ll find you’ll get much more protein per serving and without all of the added sugars.
Food Swap #4: Almond Milk Instead of Cow’s Milk
Ok, this isn’t a “food” but something I absolutely had to add to our eat this not that list. If you want to drastically cut some of your liquid calories back, switch from cow’s milk to almond milk – it’ll cut your calories in half. One cup of cow’s milk is around 83 calories while one cup of unsweetened almond milk only contains 36 calories.
Make this switch whether you drink in plain, add it in smoothies, or use it for your morning bowl of oatmeal. Add that up over time from your daily consumption and you save yourself a ton of calories.
It seems so simple but use smaller plates. When you have a gigantic plate, you almost always feel obligated to fill it up with food. It’s a psychological thing. Downsize your dishes and you may notice you’ll downsize your waistline as well.