(Heart) Healthy Ingredient Replacements
When you think of heart healthy ingredients, you probably start listing the various vegetables and fruits that you see in the produce aisle at the grocery store. Our minds are programmed to think of ‘vegetables’ when we think of making healthier food decisions and often get stuck on what to make that isn’t just a salad.
But guess what? When it comes to making your meals healthier, you don’t have to simply munch on some lettuce (although you can!). Instead, you can make your favourite existing recipes HEALTHIER by a few simple ingredient replacements! Ready to take a whole new stance on healthy eating? Take a look at these heart healthy ingredient replacements that will transform your food from ‘adequate to ‘amazing!’
Use Instead Of: Mayonnaise, Sour Cream, Cream Cheese, Buttermilk, Sweetened Yogurt
In the past few years, the trend towards Greek yogurt consumption has increased, and there is no doubt as to why! Greek yogurt has been found to be overflowing with calcium (good for the bones), and contains great bacteria (aka probiotics) that can help your gut health too. It has even been found that eating yogurt can strengthen your heart, reduce your blood pressure, and reduce the risk for developing heart disease.
Use Instead Of: Granulated Sugar
A spoonful of honey not only helps the medicine go down (what Mary Poppins should have said) but it also is an amazing heart healthy replacement for a multitude of recipes! Research has discovered that by including honey into our diets, we are getting an increase in antioxidants that have been proven to reduce the risk of heart disease. Helloooo honey!
Use Instead Of: Butter, Shortening, Mayonnaise, Cream, Eggs
If you aren’t on the avocado train, you need to be. This amazing green fruit has all the fats needed – the good kind of course, monosaturated fats! Avocados are a great source of omega-3 fatty acids (which improve cardiovascular health) as well as a variety of vitamins including B, C, K, as well as magnesium and potassium. Add this delicious ingredient into your baking, dressing and sauce recipes, salads, and other dishes to reap the benefits of the green goodness!
Use Instead of: Rice, Potatoes, Creamy Sauces, Meat
You have probably heard of cauliflower wings and cauliflower pizza crust, and you would be right in thinking that this ingredient is a healthy replacement! Instead of filling up on the sugary carbs and gluten found in most breads, which can be hard on your system and lead to weight gain, use cauliflower as a replacement! By adding this vegetable into your recipes, you will get an increase of fiber and vitamin B. It is even said that cauliflower can help with weight loss, reduce the risk of cancer, heart disease, and other illnesses, and works to clean your system!
Use Instead of: Cow’s Milk, Heavy Cream, Buttermilk
For those who have a hard time digesting dairy or those who are lactose intolerant, nut milks are some of the best alternatives to use when in the kitchen. Almond milk, oat milk, cashew milk, macadamia milk, and coconut milk are wonderful options to get high levels of calcium (sometimes more than cow’s milk!) and increase your fiber intake (something which is not commonly found in cow’s milk). What makes nut milks so good in particular is that they do not have cholesterol or saturated fats which encourage a healthy heart. Swap out whatever your preference is, and enjoy every meal just like normal!
Ready to make breakfast, lunch, and dinner healthier with these amazing heart healthy replacements? Get started today! Look out for those recipes where you can swap in these ingredients and say hello to a healthier, happier heart!