What’s Healthy Anyway? Should You Eat This or That?
“Healthy eating is a way of life, so it’s important to establish routines that are simple, realistically, and ultimately livable.” – Horace
By now the effects of the holidays have set it…you want to drop a few pounds and get healthier but have no idea where to start in terms of what to eat…with all the various diets out there, it’s oh so confusing!
At JOYVIAL, we want to help you look and feel your best. We offer the framework to help you get started and give you actionable and sustainable steps for you to thrive. As we think about food choices, we try to select the foods that will offer the greatest amount of nourishment AND make your taste buds dance.
With that in mind, I’ve asked our JOYVIAL executive health coaches to share their ideas of what to eat to replace some of your favorite not-so-healthy meals and snacks with foods that are equally tasty but so much better for your body. This will give you a great starting point and a jump towards a year of eating mindfully and making healthy food choices.
Opt for This instead of That for a Healthier Version
1. Salad Dressings: One question I often receive pertains to salad dressings which can be loaded with extra fat, artificial ingredients as well as extra calories. Instead of creamy dressings that are often packed with processed, calorie filled ingredients opt for infused
2. Yogurt: Another substitution to consider is to opt for eating plain yogurt with whole natural fruits instead of sugar filled fruit yogurts.
3. Salmon bagel: This is one of my absolute favorite things to do. I opt for baking a pound of salmon at the start of the week and put it on a brown rice cake with avocado, lemon juice and sprouts…instead of a bagel with cream cheese and smoked salmon.
4. Soups: I also feel much better opting for a clear vegetable soup or hearty stew vs. creamy soups (clam chowders, etc.).
5. Cereals: Instead of sugar loaded cereals many people opt for oatmeal and I’ve found the best is home cooked oatmeal sweetened with a banana and pear.
JOYVIAL executive health coach, Patty, offers the following healthy alternative suggestions:
1. Kale: Instead of a plain smoothie or a higher glycemic all- fruit smoothie, opt for Kale. Keep a bag of kale, and fruit in the freezer to add to your daily smoothies for a powerful boost of antioxidants and energy.
2. Berries: Opt for eating berries primarily as fruit selections as they are lower on glycemic index instead of other fruits like bananas.
3. Maple Syrup: Additionally, substitute maple syrup instead of other sweeteners for the same reason.
4. Gut Friendly Foods: For a healthy gut, opt for kimchi on top of salads, drink kombucha or kefir water for gut health instead of high sugar drinks with added artificial sweeteners. Opt for lemon, or apple cider vinegar to water and drink 1/2 your weight in ounces daily versus higher calorie flavored sports drinks.
JOYVIAL executive health coach Michelle offers the following substitutions for healthy snack alternatives:
1. Avocados: Opt for a healthy snack with minimal sugar and will keep you full instead of chips or pretzels. Avocados which can be mashed on top of toast, mixed in with cottage cheese, or just plain with a little bit of salt. Avocados also contain anti-inflammatory antioxidants which are great for exercise recovery.
2. Trail Mix: Opt for a healthy fruit and nut trail mix versus a high sugar granola bar. Although they can be tasty, for the amount of calorie-dense carbs and fat they contain, you might as well eat a candy bar. Many of these bars are packed with simple sugars, and they aren't quite filling enough to substitute for a meal or snack.
3. Fresh Spritzer: Instead of soda, opt for regular water or seltzer water with added lemon, mint and cucumber. This makes a delicious and refreshing drink.
JOYVIAL executive health coach Cari offers a healthy substitution for foods on the sweeter side.
1. Sweet Potatoes. Opt for sweet potatoes if you’re craving something sweet instead of cookies or cake. She cooks a batch every Sunday to eat throughout the week to ward off the sugar cravings. Mash them up and mix them with almond butter and cacao powder for a special “chocolatey” treat. You could also just keep it simple - sweet potatoes topped with chopped nuts, nut butter, unsweetened coconut shreds, cinnamon, etc..
2. Overnight oats. Opt for overnight oats with fresh fruit for a healthy snack or breakfast ready to go in the morning instead of cereals with extra sugar and artificial ingredients.
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