7 Ways to Cut Calories and Boost Nutrients

potato-wedges

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If you’re watching your calories, you might think you can’t enjoy your favorite meals, but a few simple swaps here and there will help you cut calories without missing a bite. Here are 7 ideas that will trim calories and (bonus) add nutrients to your diet!

Instead of baking frozen fries for dinner, try sweet potato wedges
These spicy sweet potatoes add a flavor kick and my traditional version is equally as tasty. They require a little extra work (I often make a big batch on Sunday afternoon and then reheat them in the microwave later in the week), but sweet potatoes are loaded with powerful antioxidants (vitamin C and beta-carotene), which help eliminate free radicals, which are real bad guys against maintaining healthy, wrinkle-free skin.

Nix the cheese and condiments on your sandwich, and load up with roasted veggies and fresh herbs
Doesn’t a sandwich or wrap on whole-wheat made with roasted zucchini, bell pepper, onion, and fresh rosemary sound delicious? You won’t even miss the cheese and condiments with all of those flavors!

Replace your fat-free salad dressing with a homemade dressing
Sure, your fat-free dressing is low calorie, but it’s probably made with all sort of hard-to-pronounce ingredients and likely doesn’t offer much in the form of nutrition. Instead, try one of these homemade salad dressings. Make a big batch and then store it in your refrigerator for easy access. And you can never go wrong with simple oil and vinegar—just don’t be too heavy handed.

Instead of using mayo in your tuna or chicken salad, try mashed avocado
Avocados provide many essential vitamins and nutrients. The avocado is a Superfood for just about anything including weight loss, memory, heart health, and some digestive disorders. The healthy fats will also fill and satisfy you!

Trade your spaghetti for a cup of spaghetti squash
Spaghetti squash has fewer calories and more nutrients than pasta, so it’s a great substitute. Here are three tasty ways to eat spaghetti squash!

Lose the iceberg in your salad (or on your sandwich) and replace it with dark leafy greens
Kale, Swiss chard, and spinach, just to name a few, are loaded with nutrients and antioxidants, so instead of ho-hum watery iceberg lettuce, jazz up your salad with one of these dark leafy greens. Too bitter for your taste buds? Try sauteing them in olive oil with a little salt and pepper before adding them to your meal.

Read Tina’s daily food and fitness blog, Carrots ‘N’ Cake.

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