Five food cravings that can be carbed with healthy options

Food2 min read

Fighting against a hunger for unhealthy treats? Discover five fabulous substitutes sure to satisfy your cravings.

Whether it’s a sudden longing for something sweet or a yearning for a carb overload, food cravings can hit anyone – but that doesn’t mean you’re stuck with them. In fact, by swapping out unhealthy snacks with smart substitutes, you could quash your cravings and give your body lots of healthy vitamins, nutrients and minerals instead.

Don’t give into unhealthy cravings – discover alternative options that will help you fight off five of the most common cravings.

1. Forgo fizzy drinks in favour of fruit juices and spritzes

If you’re craving fizzy drinks, the chances are you’re not only looking for a sugar hit, you’re also a touch dehydrated. Combat both parts of the problem by pouring a big glass of cold water (the best way to hydrate) and adding a dash of fresh fruit juice. Alternatively, drink your water plain but enjoy a nectarine or a few slices of mango on the side – this is even better for you, as fresh, un-juiced fruit is higher in fibre.

Tip: Enjoy a fizzy drink without all the unhealthy ingredients by adding a squeeze of fresh lemon or lime, a handful of crushed mint or a few freshly sliced strawberries to carbonated water.

2. Craving chocolate? Try dried or fresh fruit

When all you can think about is chocolate, it’s time to give yourself something else to ponder. Try snacking on fresh, seasonal fruit for a more sensible sugar hit with the added benefits of dietary fibre and vitamins and you might find your craving quickly melts away.

Tip: For a substantial but delectable salad perfect for killing sweet cravings while also providing you with plenty of delicious flavours, whip up a ham, fig, mozzarella and lemon zest salad.

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3. Switch potato chips for popcorn

Potato chips are a natural go-to snack for people who’re in need of something crunchy and savoury to snack on. For a healthier home-made version, pop some corn in a little olive oil and sprinkle lightly with unrefined sea salt instead.

Tip: When it’s the munchability and portability of chips you’re craving, why not swap the traditional kind for dried banana chips? Preferably baked at home, these are a super source of potassium, are low on the GI index and are packed with antioxidants, making them a great substitute for salty chips.

4. Change up your carbs

When your body is telling you it would really like a slice of bread, you might simply be craving the slow-release of energy your body can enjoy from carbohydrates – and there’s nothing wrong with that! However, a slice of bread from the supermarket may potentially be full of sugar. Swap that shop bought loaf for a homemade variety, preferably with whole grains. Other great sources of healthy carbs include oats, brown rice or quinoa.

Tip: When bread is on the menu, treat yourself to a delicious and protein-filled meal of poached egg with ham-wrapped asparagus on sourdough.

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5. Exchange coffee and tea for healthy hydrators

A cup of coffee or tea might be the first thing you think about in the morning, but you’re likely to get your day off to a brighter start without them.

Tip: What your body needs is some post-sleep hydration. Eat a slice of watermelon (which has approximately 92 per cent water) or dilute fresh orange juice with water to feel refreshed. Alternatively, infuse a mug of hot water with a slice of lemon or a few chopped chunks of ginger (a popular choice for reducing nausea and inflammation) and skip the coffee or tea.

Substituting the right alternatives for unhealthy snacks is a great lifestyle tweak. When you’re eating at home, it’s easy to swap ingredients for healthier options and if you prepare your meals yourself, they’re going to be much more appealing and suited to your family’s preferences and tastes.

Free yourself from cravings, with some smart and healthy swaps!

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