Have you ever considered replacing cider with beer, or battered fish with salmon? This is why you should.
Losing weight doesn’t have to mean cutting out complete food groups, sticking to a strict juice cleanse or depriving yourself of all the things you love. There are actually some easy, delicious food swaps that will help you lose weight but, more importantly, help you sustain a healthier lifestyle. These five aren’t what you might have initially considered, but they’re an easy – and delicious – place to start.
1. Mix up your protein
Swapping out your beef mince isn’t exactly a traditional place to start on your weight loss journey. Although it’s a great source of protein, it’s also high in calories (approx. 283 per 100g) and is a high source of fat. Instead, try 50g of lean mince and 50g of lentils (another high source of protein), which combined equates to 168 calories. That’s a difference of 115 calories and one-third the fat. Lentils are also a valuable source of fibre, which is great for gut health and satiety (or, fullness). Plus, cutting back on meat is great for the environment, but that’s a whole different story altogether.
2. Choose salmon over battered fish – even though it’s higher in calories
When choosing fish, you might be surprised to find that when comparing equivalent portions, 100g of salmon is 23 calories higher than 100g of battered flake (and if you don’t know what flake is, it is shark – the most common choice for battered fish). In this instance though, the higher calorie option is the much healthier option, and is more likely to result in long-term weight loss. Salmon is higher in protein (by almost 10g), which helps us stay fuller for longer, and wards off any unhealthy snack choice later on. It’s also lower in sodium – which has been shown to influence water retention – so choosing lower sodium options can actually help you drop a dress size, as your body isn’t holding onto excess fluid.
3. Swap hot chips for oven baked sweet potato chips
There’s nothing quite like hot chips on the beach (with your salmon!) in the middle of summer, but, as we know, they are high in both fat and salt. Making your own chips from sweet potato can result in 148 less calories, and 168mg less sodium consumed when comparing 100g serves. It takes a little bit of planning, but it’s worth it.
4. Replace white rice for barley, the ‘forgotten grain’
Barley is often overlooked when it comes to great grains. But it boasts so many benefits, especially as it’s a low GI option. It takes a while to digest, which means it provides a long, slow energy burn, meaning you stay fuller, for longer. One cup of barley provides 634 calories, whilst one cup white rice provides 772 calories. Barley also provides more protein, nearly five times more fibre and more than 50g less carbohydrates than the same portion of white rice. It’s simple numbers, really.
5. Say goodbye to cider, and hello to beer
Yes, seriously. Now we know this isn’t exactly a switch-up you might’ve thought of but as we move into summer, I see more and more people choosing cider as their drink of choice. When it comes to weight loss though, cider is one of the highest calorie choices around. One standard cider (285mL) comes in at 154 calories, whereas a mid strength lager only contains 59 calories. Whilst I am not recommending over-indulging in alcohol (like, at all) this swap can make a significant impact through the party season. For those that would prefer not too, opt for my favourite mock-drink, soda water with mint and lemon or lime. There are nearly no calories and, perhaps most importantly, no damage to your liver.
October 20, 201610:27am