The Big Ten

No this isn’t about college basketball.

The Big Ten: referring to food


Which actually makes this post even harder.  I have been working hard to transition certain foods out of my diet and work in new ones that are similar but are incredibly better for you. Ten easy little switches.

1. Bread (or toast in the morning): I usually have a slice of whole wheat bread (Dave’s Killer Bread) but am now transitioning to half a slice and working in an egg (fried, poached, boiled, whatever).

2. Bacon: easy switch, Morning Farms vegetarian bacon…Mr. Wonderful made me try it and now it’s part of my breakfast every morning. Incredibly delicious.

3. Drinks: this is easy, just drink water.  Unless you must have a glass of wine.  Just put down the beer, the fru-fru drinks (as my Dad calls them), the soda, and drink water.  Your body will thank you.

4. Bread/Pasta: again. I know.  Whole Wheat. 100%.  As for pasta Little Miss Owl loves Ronzoni Garden Delight rotini pasta that has half a serving of vegetables per 2 oz portion.  It’s made with carrots, tomatoes, and spinach.  And honestly I can’t tell the difference.

5. Peanut Butter: A great way to get a lot of fat.  And some protein.  My new favourite…Almond Naturally More.  It’s almond butter made with flax seeds and contains omega 3 and 6.  It’s delicious.  It’s gluten free, is higher in fiber, and contains no trans fats.  Eat with a sliced apple instead of the traditional PBJ.

6. Chips: everyone loves them right?  Wrong.  Your body does not love them.  What your body does love is sweet potatoes.  Peel a sweet potato then slice it into chips, toss in a bag with about 1/2tsp of olive oil with salt and pepper (and rajun cajun if you need some zest) then lay out on a cookie sheet and bake in the oven at 400 for about 20 minutes.  These are amazing.  They actually taste BETTER than chips.  Any chip.

7. Ice Cream: My grandpa taught me this one.  Blend a frozen banana with a tsp of cocoa powder or chocolate syrup and a small amount of milk.  Banana and chocolate ice cream. It’s delicious.

8. Chocolate: this one is both hard and not hard at the same time.  The substitution is dark chocolate.  The other side of that substitution is ONE PIECE of dark chocolate.  It’s really better to go with #7 if you are going to cheat.

9. Pizza: one of the obvious substitutions is to get a whole wheat crust when you can, but that’s not really enough.  Make it at home.  Make it a cauliflower crust.  Cook the cauliflower and then puree it and form it on the cookie sheet.  Season with salt and pepper and then cook at 350 for about fifteen minutes.  Continually check that it’s not burning.  Then take out and put on your toppings…perhaps leave off the pepperoni and go for chicken instead.

10. Smoothies: when you buy them you have no idea what goes in.  Even at Mr. Wonderful’s favorite smoothie place we still aren’t sure of the caloric value.  This one is easy.  Make them at home.  I add spinach to every smoothie I make (almost) and you cannot tell that it was added.  There are thousands of smoothie combinations on the web.  My favourite: banana, mixed berries, greek yogurt, protein powder, spinach, soy milk, and ice cubes.  Delicious.

So any one else have any great substitutions?  Obviously these only scratch the surface.


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