Are you trying to make healthier food choices but aren’t sure which options are better? We’ve got you covered. Make these (sometimes surprising!) healthier swaps.
Instead of: Sour Cream
Try: Greek Yogurt. The Skinny: Plain Greek yogurt and sour cream are nearly alike in both taste and texture, so there’s really no excuse not to use the lean, protein-packed alternative to fatter sour cream. A dollop of Greek yogurt can save you more than 20 grams of saturated fat while more than doubling your protein intake.
Instead of: Full-fat Cheese
Try: Low-fat Cheese. The Skinny: Many cheesy casseroles and bakes call for ricotta. Swap the full-fat cheese with the skinner version and cut 9 grams of saturated fat per serving.
Instead of: French Fries
Try: Potato Salad. The Skinny: According to a 2013 USDA Agricultural Research Service study, chilled potatoes pack more resistant starch than any other kind of potato. Sometimes called the third starch, resistant starch is not absorbed in the small intestine, so you eat less and feel fuller longer. Use extra-virgin olive oil, red wine vinegar and mustard instead of mayo to slash even more calories.
Instead of: Sausage Patties
Try: Center-cut Bacon. The Skinny: Salty, fatty breakfast pork will try to seduce you every now and again. If you indulge, remember that center-cut bacon has only 25 calories per slice. It’s loaded with nearly 200 milligrams of sodium, though, so make this a rare treat.
Instead of: Chocolate Ice Cream (1/2 cup)
Try: Fat-free Chocolate Pudding (1/2 cup)
The Skinny: Fat-free pudding will save you 7 grams of fat.
Instead of: Granola
Try: Oatmeal. The Skinny: A half-cup serving (cooked) of Quaker Steel Cut Oats contains 150 calories, 2.5 grams of fat and 1 gram of sugar, while a half-cup of Quaker’s Apple, Cranberry & Almond Granola weighs in at 200 calories, 5 grams of fat and a staggering 13 grams of sugar—before you add the milk!
Instead of: Vegetable Soup
Try: Split-Pea Soup. The Skinny: Pea soup has 10 grams of protein, more than the amount in a glass of milk or an egg.
Instead of: Flour Tortillas
Try: Corn Tortillas. The Skinny: Save 450 milligrams of sodium.
Instead of: Rice
Try: Baked Potato. The Skinny: Get nearly three times the fiber in that baked potato. You’ll also clock 20 percent of your daily dose of potassium, which helps regulate blood pressure.
Instead of: A Bran Muffin
Try: Raisin Bran. The Skinny: Coffee shop muffins can pack 400 calories or more. But when you eat your bran with a spoon, using 2/3 cup 1% low-fat milk, you trim the calories and get 2 grams more fiber than in the muffin. You’ll also add 200 milligrams of bone-building calcium.
Instead of: Orange Juice
Try: An Orange. The Skinny: A cup of orange juice contains about 21 grams of sugar and almost no fiber. A large orange has slightly less sugar—about 17 grams—but will give you more than six times the heart-healthy fiber.
Instead of: Chocolate Chip Cookies
Try: Fig Bars. The Skinny: Though they are technically still cookies, fig bars contain much less refined sugar. They also are a great source of fiber, so you won’t wolf down a whole pack at one time.
Instead of: Meat Lasagna
Try: Cheese Ravioli. The Skinny: Compared with lasagna, ravioli is downright Kelly Ripa-thin, with about half as much total and saturated fat as lasagna.