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10 food swaps to add taste and nutrients to your diet


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7. Cashew cheese instead of dairy cheese

Full disclosure: It’s much easier to go to the store and buy cheese than it is to make cashew cheese, but should that matter? Sometimes an extra step may make all the difference. In this case, the difference is extremely significant. I make cashew cheese all the time. This option is especially beneficial for individuals looking to either cut or eliminate dairy without having to rely on more processed alternative cheese options.

8. Roasted chickpeas instead of croutons

Salads are a wonderful way to consume low-calorie nutrients. There are numerous ways to ruin a salad, though. Adding refined grains, like croutons, is one of them.

Instead, opt for roasted chick peas that you can either make or buy. The addition will help add fiber, which increases your satiety, as well as some healthy fats to help metabolize all the glorious fat soluble vitamins you’ll be consuming in your colorful bowl. Just don’t blow it by adding on a sugar-laden, fat-free dressing.

9. Plantains over corn

In the world of food allergens, there are specific foods that are more prevalent than others. Many of my patients avoid soy, gluten, dairy nuts, eggs or corn. For these individuals, it can be difficult to find wraps or breads to meet their needs. Plantain wraps may be the next best thing to make at home, or may even be available at your local store. They will also help add in another vegetable into your day!

10. Sweet potato toast over regular toast

Sweet potatoes are flowing with antioxidants. Vitamin A and C, potassium and fiber are staples of this orange delight, and swapping this veggie for bread can go a long way towards reducing grains in your diet and helping you lose weight. Cut a raw sweet potato in thin slices (keep that delicious and fiber-rich skin on), toast until brown and then top as you would toast (think avocado, banana and nut butter, eggs, fruit).

Making some simple swaps can make all the difference in helping you to stay full, satisfied, and happy, without sacrificing taste. Sorry about the bacon.

Kristin Kirkpatrick, MS, R.D., is the manager of wellness nutrition services at the Cleveland Clinic Wellness Institute in Cleveland, Ohio, and the author of “Skinny Liver.” Follow her on Twitter @KristinKirkpat. For more diet and fitness advice, sign up for our One Small Thing newsletter.