Healthy Choice Hacks
Cook instead of eating out.
Even if you try to eat healthy at a restaurant, that pesky bread bowl or sneaky salad may pack more calories than you planned for. Trust your inner Top Chef skills, and turn on the (skillet) heat. Cooking at home will more likely result in a healthier meal, not to mention a happier wallet.
Eat whole fruit instead of drinking fruit juice.
A glass of O.J. contains very little of the pulp or skin from an orange—and none of the fiber content. Skip the glass, and go with the whole piece of fruit to reap the full nutritional benefits of this sweet, healthy snack (and save some calories while you’re at it).
Pan-fry food instead of deep-frying it.
Obvious news flash: Deep-fried food is unhealthy. Keep things crispy by pan-frying lean protein or veggies in the skillet with coconut oil. We promise it’ll be just as tasty!
Buy local produce instead of supermarket veggies.
Take a trip to the farmer’s market instead of the mass market produce aisle. According to the USDA, locally produced fruits and veggies that are in-season may be more nutritious. And it supports local farmers, too!
Use oil and balsamic instead of processed dressings.
Ever flip that dressing bottle around and see a million ingredients listed? Think “less is more,” and lightly dress a salad with some olive oil and balsamic vinegar—no additives included!
Eat raw spinach instead of iceberg lettuce.
Let’s be real, iceberg lettuce is boring and lacks nutrients. Spinach is a flavorful alternative – it’s full of vitamin K, vitamin A, calcium, and iron. Plus, Popeye loves it, so you can’t go wrong!
Use Greek yogurt instead of sour cream.
Crave sour cream in your burrito? To get that same creamy coolness, add a dollop of plain Greek yogurt. You’ll amp up the protein and slash the fat.
Sprinkle cinnamon instead of sugar.
Here’s a spicy suggestion: Use cinnamon instead of sugar packets to heighten the flavor of coffee without adding extra calories. Try it in oatmeal, too!
Choose salsa instead of cream-based dips.
Dip chips into this fiery, flavorful alternative to cheesy spreads to get extra nutrients for fewer calories.
Eat frozen grapes instead of a Popsicle.
It’s like eating bite-sized Popsicles with no artificial added sugars!
Drink sparkling water instead of soda.
Try a fun flavor like lemon-lime or even vanilla if you don’t like straight soda water. Need some sweetness? Keep it natural by dropping in a half or whole packet of Stevia.
Top pancakes with fresh fruit instead of syrup.
There’s nothing like a good stack of pancakes every now and then. Cut calories by skipping the maple syrup, (especially since many syrups on the market today aren’t made of maple at all!).
Snack on air-popped popcorn instead of chips.
Craving something to munch? Air-pop some popcorn, and add a dash of sea salt—three whole cups is only about 100 calories. That’s way more satisfying than six greasy chips.
Order red wine or beer instead of a margarita.
You’ll drink about half as many calories. Your body will benefit from the antioxidants in red wine plus its believed to help improve cholesterol, fight free radical damage, fight obesity and cognitive decline, and help manage diabetes.
Choose brown rice over white.
White rice is stripped of many essential nutrients (like fiber… which is great for healthy digestion).
Choose whole-wheat pasta.
Unlike regular pasta, whole-wheat pasta has a nutty flavor that’s filled with antioxidants and fiber.
Eat oatmeal instead of sugary cereal.
Options like Cap’n Crunch and Frosted Flakes are filled with sugar and artificial ingredients, while oatmeal boasts heart-healthy benefits. Choose the right oatmeal: reach for steel cut or rolled oats, never processed, to keep your diet lean, clean and nutrition-rich!.
Pack a lunch instead of eating out.
Bonus: That vending machine will look far less appetizing after you eat the meal you pack.
Eat at least three times a day instead of skipping meals.
When you don’t make the time to squeeze in a midday meal, you end up feeling tired and grouchy—and you set yourself up for overeating later.
Use mustard instead of mayo.
For tomorrow’s turkey sandwich, skip the fat-filled mayo and spread some tasty (and naturally fat-free) mustard on the bread.
Spread avocado on bread instead of butter. Add a dash of sea salt and some sliced tomato for a great midday snack.
Choose lean meats and seafood instead of fatty ones.
For a boost of protein without the fat, choose lean meats like turkey, bison, fish and chicken over pork and beef.
Opt for marinara sauce instead of white sauce.
We doubt penne a la vodka is made with Grey Goose, so the extra calories in white sauce aren’t worth it.
Get a doggy bag instead of overeating.
To avoid eating more than planned, ask the waiter to wrap half of it up before it even gets to your table.
Chew slowly instead of quickly.
What’s the rush? Studies show people who eat faster consume more calories. Enjoy your food and all it’s flavor, and chew thoroughly to aid digestion. It takes your brain 20 minutes to recognize the status of your appetite so give it time to catch up!
Eat at the table instead of in front of the TV.
Dining in front of the television can lead to serious overeating.
Eat breakfast instead of sleeping in.
It may be tempting to hit the snooze button more than once in the morning, but allow some time for breakfast—it will help jump start your metabolism and helps wakes your brain and body before you head to work.
Order black coffee instead of a latte.
If that caffeine fix is calling, order a simple black coffee. A soy-mocha-extra-shot-Frappuccino extravaganza isn’t worth the calories (or cash).
Choose toast instead of a bagel.
A single bagel can be the caloric equivalent of five slices of toast, so fight that craving and enjoy a slice or two of whole-wheat bread instead.
Use a medium plate instead of a large one.
Smaller plates (about eight to 10 inches in diameter) can save you more than 20 percent of the calories you’d eat in a larger-plate-sized serving. Same goes for utensils and beverages by the way! Smaller quantities equal less over-consumption.
Eat cereal from a bowl instead of a box.
A few mindless handfuls of cereal can turn into more than a bowl-sized serving.
Eat hard-boiled eggs instead of fried eggs.
Who needs extra grease in the morning? Drop some eggs in boiling water, and cook them up for a protein-packed breakfast. Still want to scramble? Try new microwave-inspired poaching pans to cook them up simply and perfectly without oil.
Eat with chopsticks instead of a fork.
It may be a challenge, but it’ll stop you from speed-slurping those noodles.
Go grocery shopping when you’re full instead of when you’re hungry.
People spend more when they shop hungry—and choose less healthy foods.
Stop when you’re full instead of when you clean the plate.
A plate half-full means more leftovers and fewer calories!
Eat raw nuts instead of nut butter.
Nut kinds of butter contain more fat and sugar than raw nuts. Plus, it’s easy to overeat peanut butter.
Nap instead of sipping on an energy drink.
Energy drinks can pack as much sugar as six doughnuts, while catnaps are always calorie-free.
At Thrive Fitness we offer on-staff diet and wellness counseling with our certified nutritionist, as well as Thrive Healthy Meals (nutritionally balanced and made fresh, personal to order, with clean local ingredients). Email us today to learn about your BMI and nutritional needs at firstname.lastname@example.org.