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Ways to Swap Out Unhealthy Foods for Healthy Foods

Hey y’all, so I think it’s been drilled into us enough that healthy eating is super important. The more junk food you eat, the “junkier” you feel, whereas healthier foods will give you energy and nutrients, and help keep you from getting sick. However, we all know, junk food tastes really good sometimes. We are in football season, which means football parties and football food, not to mention we have Halloween and Christmas and Thanksgiving coming up in a few months. All of these things generally mean there are some unhealthy food options in there. Luckily, there are ways to swap out unhealthy foods for healthy foods, and it won’t even be that painful!

Moderation is always what I use when it comes to healthy eating. I’m not big on dieting or diet foods, and I think the instant you cut something out of your diet completely, the more you crave it, or at least, that’s how it has always worked for me. So, rather than do that, it’s better to find a nice healthy balance. With these tips, you can hopefully do just that while enjoying everything the upcoming seasons have to offer.

  • Try non-dairy milk options instead. If you’re noticing that you are having some stomach issues after drinking milk or you just want to try to get away from dairy in general, try almond, coconut, or oat milk. I’ve had all of the above, and since I can no longer have dairy in my diet really, I’ve found that all of the above make great substitutions and in my opinion, taste better than real milk anyway.
  • Lessen the sugar in recipes. I know it may seem like it’ll be a huge deal to start changing recipes, but this is something I did last year for Christmas cookies, and they tasted the exact same, and were healthier with less sugar. Talk about a win-win!
  • Try a lean white meat instead of as much red meat. Again, this is moderation, so don’t cut it completely from your diet, but definitely try swapping it out here and there. White meat is notoriously better for you than red meat, so see how you like it. An easy way to do this is to use ground turkey instead of ground beef in recipes. This is another thing that I think tastes better, so I try to swap it out as often as I can.
  • Get your veggies in your smoothie. I used to be someone who had a strawberry banana smoothie with chocolate in it. Tastes delicious, but I definitely lost the health factor. Now, each morning I have a tropical smoothie with protein powder and some greens like spinach and/or kale. It still tastes delicious as the protein powder gives it an extra sweetness, and I can feel good each time I make one knowing I’m fueling my body rather than putting extra junk in it.
  • Try different fruits for desserts. Let me explain. So instead of a banana split with ice cream, try a banana split with yogurt. Top it with fruit and nuts and even coconut flakes. It’s much healthier, and will still get that sweet tooth satisfied. If you’re craving a different dessert, try cut up bananas with honey and some cinnamon. Again, you’ll satisfy the sweet tooth without having too much added sugar.
  • If you aren’t a huge fan of vegetables, find ways to sneak them in. One way is to have pasta filled with vegetables or even spiralized veggies instead of pasta. For example, I tried a butternut squash stuffed shell recipe this year, and it was delicious. I’ve made it several times, and absolutely love it. If you’re more daring, cook up spiralized zucchini and squash and put some tomato sauce on it. You may not even notice that you’re eating veggies instead of pasta. I can attest, it tastes delicious.
  • Eat baked chips instead of regular. This way, you’ll still get your chips, but they’re a smidge healthier when they’re baked.

I hope these tips help, and that you find something here that helps you to have some healthier options in the future. Let me know if you have any tips you’d like to share!

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Write Down Your Resolutions

Did you know, that if you write your resolutions down, you’re more likely to accomplish them? So write those goals down, get any tools or accessories you need, i.e. if you want to be more organized, get yourself a planner, and get ready for a fresh new year!

Start Cleaning Slowly

For many, the day after Christmas looks like a tornado whipped through the house, with wrapping paper and ribbons everywhere, so start cleaning up first thing in the morning. Get rid of all the garbage, minimize the leftovers, and start getting your house back into order.

Be Surrogate Family

Spend time with someone who’s family is out of town or who doesn’t have family at all. They need a surrogate family during this time especially, but this is a good one for all times of the year too. Invite them out or over for a meal or take time to join them for an adventure.

Take Extra Blankets to a Shelter

In this cold weather, you can do so much for others, even something as simple as taking extra blankets you have around the house to a shelter. There are so many in need who this will help to keep warm.

Just Started Dating Around the Holidays

You know what can really complicate the holidays? No, it’s not your Aunt Susan after one too many glasses of wine who starts complaining about anything and everything. It’s starting a relationship right before the holidays, and trying to figure out how to navigate this tricky time.

For most people who are in committed relationships and have been for some time, it’s pretty easy to figure out how the holidays go. You either alternate years or you alternate days that you see each other’s family. This way, no one gets left out, and you both fulfill your obligations to see one another. But what if, you just started seeing someone in October? Or November? It’s much too soon to meet the parents or start alternating who gets Christmas or Christmas Eve, so that makes things a little more complicated.

This can be a bit of a tricky situation, because obviously you two want to spend time together, but you may not want to subject them to the kind of crazy that is your family -just remember, we all have crazy family members, not much we can do about it 🙂 However, there is a very simple, and easy remedy to this situation.

Depending on your family, you may only see everyone on Christmas, which leaves Christmas Eve for a romantic stroll through the park or going ice skating or even wandering around looking at Christmas lights, whatever suits you two as a couple. This way, you still get to spend time with your significant other, but you don’t have to worry about the meet the parents. If you have a family that generally takes both days to celebrate, that’s me, then it can be a little harder to figure out. Generally, I have the morning to myself on Christmas Eve, but if you’re doing last minute Christmas present wrapping or shopping, then those hours are blocked off. That’s where the day before or the day after Christmas come in. Since most people get that day off, or are taking vacation for it, you can easily squeeze in some time with your SO.

Just try to remember not to put so much pressure on yourself for this. Yes, it’s Christmas, but if you’re in a new relationship, make sure to take things slow, and take your time. There’s no need to rush things, and you can always start new Christmas traditions next year.

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