Most of us want to be able to have choices when it comes to eating, our foods, and our lifestyles. Nothing gives us more pleasure than knowing we have the power to pick and intentionally choose what we are going to eat, activities to engage in and our immediate living environment (well, I guess that depends on who you ask). As a huge natural food and healthy lifestyle enthusiast, I feel empowered when I learn about healthy alternatives to traditional food and daily habit go-to's. Here are the top trending healthy food and lifestyle substitutes that will make you and your family feel better from the inside out.
Dark varieties of honey and dark chocolate had much better results in stopping coughs than over the counter pharmaceutical cough medicine. The suggested dose for ages 1 to 6 is one-half teaspoon 30 minutes before bed, increasing to one teaspoon for children 6 to 11 years old.
For dark chocolate, use a half ounce of dark chocolate under age 6, and one ounce from 6 to 11. The effect lasts about four hours.
Sprouted and whole grains have protein, fiber, and added healthy omega-3's, along with a complex mixture of vitamins, minerals, and other micronutrients. Refined grains are stripped of most bioavailable nutrients and affect the blood sugar differently.
Solid fats are saturated fats or animal fats that are solid at room temperature. These include hydrogenated and trans fats that are found in the majority of processed foods and animal foods. Plant-based, unaltered healthy fats, filled with brain healthy omega 3’s is the better-for-you-trend.
For baking purposes, instead of butter, substitute applesauce or avocados that are filled with healthy monounsaturated fats that fight heart disease. Butter and other solid fats, on the other hand, raise the risk of cholesterol and heart disease.
Trying a low carb, detoxing or raw diet? Use a vegetable peeler or a mandolin to make long, thin noodle-like slices of zucchini or spaghetti squash. Skip the boiling and simply bake or sauté the “noodles” for a few minutes. You can use the veggies in side dishes or to replace high-carb pasta in dishes like lasagna. It’s an easy way to cut the calories in your favorite pasta meals and sneak more vegetables into your dinner.” Non-Gmo tofu noodles are high in protein and isoflavones.
Filling the intimate home air with carcinogenic candles and plug-in air fresheners is toxic and very bad for respiratory health. Diffusing the air with pure essential oils and air cleaning houseplants is the best way to prevent respiratory disease and even prevent the onset of allergies.
Traditional antiperspirants contain chemicals like parabens, formaldehyde, triclosan, and aluminum and have been researched to cause cancer. Instead of blocking pores and preventing sweating, opt for a natural deodorant stick sold at health stores and markets or make your own with baking soda, corn starch, coconut oil, and essential oils as an option.
Though the bananas may flavor your baking a little bit, the tofu, flaxseeds and commercial egg substitute are great replacements if you are vegan or simply ran out of eggs for baking and cooking.
Giving babies fresh seasonal fruits and vegetables as their first foods is a growing trend among metropolitan, coastal and sustainable agricultural families. Now, mashed up avocados, pears, oatmeal, strawberries, and bananas filled with live enzymes, antioxidants and fiber are making its way into the stomachs of growing babies, instead of the extremely processed white rice cereal and null of nutrient, heat processed-baby foods in jars.
Place whole grain rolled oats with additional Italian seasoning (oregano, basil, rosemary, thyme) to have a high in fiber and nutrients (B vitamins and iron) meal with less sodium and processed starches.
Skip the added saturated fat and possible digestion issues with mayonnaise and sour cream. Add in non-fat Greek yogurt and you will get more protein and healthy probiotics.
Pureed sweet potatoes and avocados have less fat and sodium than traditional cream based soup broths. They also have more potassium and beta carotenes as well as omega 3s that will help with brain and heart health.
For those who are lactose intolerant or vegan, there are so many delicious and heart, brain and bone healthy alternatives that are available with a whole list of fortified vitamins and minerals. You can even make your own milk by first sprouting the nuts or seeds, removing any husks or soft shells, and blending them in a blender with spring water. Lastly, filter with a cheesecloth or fine strain.
Sources: CNN.com, Dr. Alan Greene M.D., Parenting.com, healthland.time.com, mnn.com