It’s common knowledge that you can’t live on pizza and candy and lose weight, but it’s not so common knowledge what eating “right” actually means. With so many fad diets out there, what does it actually look like to make healthy eating choices? Are potatoes healthy? What about rice? Is it better to eat less, or are we better off eating a lot of certain foods?
Nutrition blogger Amanda Meixner wants to help us understand how to make healthy eating choices, and she makes it looks so easy. In her Instagram posts, she includes a lot of simple food swap ideas that are 100% doable.
If you’re a visual learner, and if you really want to understand how to make easy and sustainable changes to your diet so that you can be healthier and lose weight without having to count calories, you’re going to love these posts as much as we do.
Here are 20 of our favorites.
Easy Food Swaps
Meixner says, “These swaps will not only save your waistline but also your health.”
Snack Food Swaps
We love bananas! They make great “ice-cream” and “pancakes” too!
It’s amazing how many calories you can cut by eating baked fries! Meixner says, “The reason why potatoes get such a bad rep for health and weight loss, is mainly owing to the fact that they are often mixed with butter, deep fried or other factors that bump up the calorie content and strip it from its health benefits.”
Zero Calorie Foods
Zero calorie pizza is our dream too.
That healthy breakfast looks so much more appealing.
Meixner says, “if you’re not a fan of protein shakes, whole food will definitely do the trick as long as you’re hitting your protein goals!” The choice is yours, but we would have to agree that whole food is more satisfying.
What’s Your Goal?
We love how Meixner breaks down healthy meals for two very different goals – fat loss vs building muscle. She says, “In the higher calorie meal, I doubled the serving of carbs, added in extra protein and an extra serving of healthy fats.”
Meixner says, “Studies show that lightly steaming or stir frying veggies preserves the nutrients far more than boiling & pressure cooking.” Good to know because we definitely think it’s easier to eat more spinach when it’s cooked.
If you prepare your meals ahead of time, it’ll be much easier to eat right when you need something fast.
Meixner says, “Honestly, doing my research on the two potatoes I expected the sweet potato to come out on top but aside from glycemic index being a fair amount lower, they’re both full of vitamins, minerals, antioxidants and health benefits!”
We’d be up for trying the cauliflower rice. Meixner says, “I bet you’d hardly taste the difference.”
Meixner says, “My favorite weight loss trick is to include 1 to 2 eggs in an omelette or scramble then add 2-3+ egg whites to add more volume!”
You don’t have to cut carbs, but it’s important to know which carbs are healthy. As Meixner says, “not all carbs are created equal.”
Either ways works; it just depends which one works best for your lifestyle.
Meixner says that you can also substitute honey if you don’t have maple syrup.
Weight Loss Swaps
We like any food guru who tells us it’s okay to eat chocolate!
Meixner says, “While bananas are definitely a healthy choice, if you’re trying to keep your calories low and still eat a lot of volume, fruits like watermelon, strawberries, blackberries, raspberries and oranges would be a better fit for you.”
The “after” definitely looks more filling. According to Meixner, “Adding more veggies adds tons of volume, fiber & vitamins & minerals without adding a ton more calories.”
As Meixner says, “Small changes add up.” She also notes that it’s okay to eat regular pasta once in awhile, but it’s a good idea to make these changes on a regular basis.
More Healthy Substitutes
While fruit isn’t exactly the same as candy, it is pretty sweet.
Which of these healthy food swaps are you going to start making?