A Answers (4)
You can find ways to make your favorite junk foods healthier. Choose whole grain buns and rolls for burgers and subs. Choose soft tacos instead of fried tacos. Choose chicken and veggies over processed meat in subs. Add plenty of veggies on top. Try a veggie burger sub! Avoid Chinese dishes that are fried and loaded with sauce. Choose chicken and veggies, skip the egg rolls. If you crave sweets try whole grain cookies instead of white flour, trans fat laden ones. Use healthy oils instead of trans fats when baking. Today there are so many healthy versions of junk food that lots of what used to be considered junk is no longer bad for you.
Forget swearing off junk foods, you'll eventually cave anyway, and risk binging. When your taste buds are demanding a guilty treat, there are ways to occasionally indulge those cravings without busting your good eating intentions or tipping your scales. Here's how.
• Perfect Pizza Ask for a thin, whole-wheat crust -- the thinner, the fewer the fat grams and calories, plus whole wheat ups the fiber and protein. Then ask for half the cheese (cuts saturated fat) and extra chicken and heart-friendly veggies, like artichokes, onions, and red or green peppers. Just before eating, blot any pools of extra grease with napkins to knock off another 3-5 grams of saturated fat.
• Fine Fries Make a batch of oven fries, and snarf up your share. At 103 calories and 1 gram of fat, you can. In fact, eat 'em all if you're in the mood. You just can't do real damage with these. And they're good.
• Better Burgers This may sound strange, but mixing unsweetened chopped tart cherries (fresh, frozen, or canned) into ground beef is a tasty way to reduce the amount of meat, fat, and calories in each burger. Also, if you're cooking on a grill, adding cherries means fewer carcinogens will form during grilling. After the burgers are done, eliminate more fat by blotting them with paper towels. The cherries help keep them juicy.
• Brilliant Burritos You're already on the right track with burritos, since they're wrapped in soft tortillas, not fried taco-style. Use whole-wheat tortillas, which are getting easy to find. For the filling, choose chicken, black beans, or seafood, not fat-laden beef, pork, or refried beans. Top with salsa (naturally low-cal and no-fat) and a little guacamole -- its heart-healthy good fats also unlock extra antioxidants in the salsa's tomatoes. The only thing you should skip: sour cream.
• Go-for-it Banana Split Use a low-fat vanilla ice cream, like many of the slow-churned ice creams. Top with sliced bananas, fat-free chocolate, and walnuts or slivered almonds. Yum. And the nutrients in the banana and the good fats in the nuts take the guilty edge off.
• Fizzy Drinks If you loathe sugar substitutes (and thus diet sodas) but hate the calories and high fructose corn syrup of regular soda even more, make your own vitamin C-rich fizzy fruit concoctions. Start with one or two favorite juices (like cranberry and orange, or pomegranate and pineapple). Halve their calories by fizzing them up with an equal amount of club soda. Add a wedge of lime or lemon if one's handy.Helpful? 1 person found this helpful.
Doreen Rodo, Nutrition & Dietetics, answered
You can definitely make junk food healthier by using the following substitutions:
Helpful? 1 person found this helpful.
- Baked Chips for regular chips
- Hummus, chunky salsa and Wholly Guacamole instead of mayo dips
- Whole wheat crackers instead of regular crackers
- Light or 2% cheese instead of regular cheese
- Make your own peanut butter crackers instead of buying prepackaged
- Dark chocolate instead milk chocolate
- Homemade bagel pizzas instead of frozen (use part-skim mozzarella)
- Baked tortilla chips plus low-fat shredded Mexican cheese for nachos with cheese sauce (you could also add ground turkey)
Kodi Moore, Nutrition & Dietetics, answered
Your favorite "junk foods" can definitely fit into a balanced diet. I like to follow the 80/20 rule, if you consume a healthy diet, low in fat, added sugars and sodium, the majority of the time (roughly 80% of the time). Occasionally (roughly 20% of the time) it is fine to consume the real version of your favorites. Just watch your portion size, I like to follow the MyPlate model using about a 9 inch plate. Visit www.myplate.org for more information. MyPlate splits your plate into 4 quadrants, half your plate should be fruits and vegetables, and then approximately one quarter protein and one quarter grains, with dairy on the side. For example, if you went out for a burger at a fast food restaurant, choose the child sized burger with everything (protein from the burger, grain from the bun, lettuce, tomato and onion are vegetables), go ahead and get cheese (dairy), choose whatever fruit they have available for your side. Then really savor the flavor, think about what you are eating, smell it, really taste it and enjoy it.Helpful? 3 people found this helpful.