Well hello, and happy Saturday to you all!
This morning, I have a fun post to share with you all. I’m a part of a new campaign with GNC called the “Total Lean Challenge,” which is a 12-week lifestyle program that includes nutrition, meal plans, workouts and video instruction, and community support.
For each week of the challenge, one of us is asked to share a fun new workout, along with various tips, tricks, and resources for various aspects of health and wellness. Today, my post is going to focus on one of my favorite things…
Healthy alternatives to less healthy foods
Now you guys know me…I’m a huge advocate for eating the real deal, but I also enjoy some healthier alternatives from time to time because, let’s face it…if we indulged in the real deal ALL the time, then we’d probably be feeling pretty crappy, sluggish, and blah.
So let’s start with pizza, for example.
Pizza is probably one of the biggest calorie bombs out there, but that doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy it in other ways! Try making a “crust” out of a whole wheat pita or tortilla. Top with some sauce, a bunch of your favorite veggies (for an added nutritional boost) some protein (chicken sausage for me!), and a little mozzarella cheese. Easy as pizza pie.
Another favorite comfort food of mine would most definitely have to be a big bowl of chicken and broccoli alfredo. Because I mean, really…what’s not to love?
But thankfully, there a ton of healthy swaps you can make:
- Most traditional alfredo sauces come loaded with heavy cream and cheese. Try using my skinny alfredo sauce, which swaps in healthy Greek yogurt for much of the heavy stuff.
- Bulk up the good stuff (i.e., the chicken and the broccoli) which are both going to give you the most nutritional value.
- Make smart choices with your pasta…stick with an actual serving (then load up on the other stuff!) and opt for whole wheat.
- Looking to cut back on the carbs? Swap in spaghetti squash for your pasta. It’s just as delicious (and is in the photo above).
So what about sweets??
Well, as you guys probably know…I have a bit of a sweet tooth. You can count on me having some sort of sweet almost daily, but I also have a few favorites that aren’t quite as loaded in the calorie department.
For example, my Oatmeal Banana Chocolate Chip Cookies.
I probably make these at least once ever 1-2 months, and they are not only easy, but super tasty, too. The mashed banana helps you cut back on added fats, and they’re just as delicious when made with whole wheat flour and good quality dark chocolate. They’re also soft, more like little muffins than cookies, but they are great at satisfying a sweet tooth.
Another new favorite evening dessert of mine would have to be this little concoction.
While I don’t think they’ll ever be anything better than a bowl of ice cream, this little dessert is certainly a great substitution. Just mix a container of Greek yogurt of choice (I like vanilla), mix in about a tablespoon of peanut butter, and top with about a tablespoon of chocolate chips (you can also feel free to crumble some TJ’s cat cookies like me).
I first got this idea from Colleen, and have been loving it ever since. It’s SO good!
Another favorite? “Wouldn’t Know They’re Healthy” Blueberry Muffins. Trust me on this one…they’re amazing.
And finally, one last favorite of mine (which can arguably be labeled “healthy” depending on what you define as healthy), are these soda cupcakes.
Rather than add in all the oil and eggs, you simply mix a box of your favorite cake mix with 12oz. of your favorite diet soda (like I said…these could be argued as healthy…I don’t judge either way!). Be sure to check out this post for some delicious cake + soda combos.
Lots of good ideas for you there…hopefully you find one you like!
Last but not least, as a part of this week’s Total Lean Challenge, may I present to you your Saturday Workout Plan.
Time to get that rowing machine revved up!
Question for the Morning:
What are some of YOUR favorite healthy alternatives to less healthy foods?
Disclaimer: Fitfluential LLC compensated me for this Campaign. All opinions are my own.