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6 savvy food swaps

Try these healthier alternatives...

You make over 200 decisions about food every day, according to research from the journal Environment and Behaviour. This includes everything from ingredient choices to whether or not to satisfy that midnight craving for chocolate chip cookies. With temptation never far away, staying on the dietary straight and narrow is not always easy. Try these simple tweaks and chow down without derailing your diet. We’re not talking swapping chips for salad here folks - these substitutions are as tasty as the originals.

Puréed avocado for butter

Butter and avocado have pretty much the same consistency at room temperatute. So whether you're whipping up some frosting or throwing together a cake, bake better bites by susbtituing equal ratios of avocado for butter. A 100g serving of butter has a whopping 81 grams of fat compared to 14 grams in the same serving of cholesterol-lowering avocado. The creaminess and subtle flavor of the avocado lends itself well to the texture of fudge brownies and dark chocolate flavorings.

Banana ice cream for ice cream

No milk, no cream, no sugar – and it counts as one of your five-a-day! Simply freeze bananas and purée for a healthy treat chock full of vitamins C, B6 and potassium. At only 105 calories per serving, it’s a no-brainer.

Almond butter for peanut butter

Almond butter provides twice as much vitamin E, iron and magnesium per serving than peanut butter, and is every bit as tasty. Just a tablespoon provides 25% of your daily vitamin E requirements. Almond butter also boasts more calcium, more fibre and less saturated fat than its peanut counterpart, making it a great hunger-curbing snack.

Camel’s milk for cow’s milk

Camel’s milk has half the fat, three times the vitamin C, and ten times the iron of cow’s. Studies also show it can help in treating diabetes and high cholesterol, and can even be stomached by lactose intolerants. Moo-ve over, cows.

Hemp seed oil for olive oil

With 40% less saturated fat than olive oil, hemp seed oil is a highly recommended alternative for stir frying, roasting and drizzling. It is also a source of “complete” protein, containing all the essential amino acids our bodies can’t synthesise. Hemp oil is also naturally rich in omega 3, containing 25x more of this essential fatty acid than olive oil.

Cauliflower rice for rice

This fibre packed veggie is rich in phytochemicals called glucosinolates, aiding the body’s natural detoxification process. Swap for rice to add volume without calories. Simply grate or blitz the florets in a food processor and fry in a little oil. You’ll save over 300 calories and over 70g of carbs per serving.

Vanilla extract for sugar

If you love vanilla and less calories, you’ll love this substitution. Simply substitute a teaspoon of vanilla extract for half the sugar in a recipe for the same sweetness but with half the calories.

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