Making healthy choices is not the easiest feat in this day and age. We are constantly bombarded with the red and yellows of fast food chains. Our noses filled with the aroma of deep fried delicacies. Our wallets tempted with the comeback of the three for $3 deal at McDonald’s…
But there are plenty of healthy options out there that will taste great and will not break the bank
Choose lean meats
Instead of its caked up cousin, go for lean, grilled meat instead of battered, deep fried options to limit unwanted extra calories and saturated fats.
Ditch the fries & soft drinks
Although it may very much so please the taste buds of many, deep fried chips and soft drink offer little nutritional value to your meal.
Instead, opt for a no-sugar drink or sparkling mineral water if you’re after that fuzzy mouth-feel. Better yet, opt for water! If you’re tight on money, taking your meal back to work and serving yourself some tap water will save you a few dollars.
Ask for extra salad or vegetables
Asking for extra serves of salad or vegetables to your meal will not only bulk it up, you’ll find yourself feeling fuller for longer from the fibre, and that extra step towards meeting your five serves of vegetables for the day! Vegetables are packed full of disease fighting antioxidants, and vitamins to help keep you feeling energised for the rest of the day.
Build your own meal
Some local cafes are more than happy to tailor a meal to your needs. Fill your meal with ½ non-starchy vegetables (leafy greens, pumpkin, tomato, carrot), ¼ low-GI carbohydrates (whole grain bread, sweet potato, brown rice) and ¼ lean protein (grilled chicken, grilled fish, eggs).
For a budget-friendly alternative, if you’re in close proximity to a supermarket try building your own meal following the same plate rule above, or purchasing healthy pre-made options! A great option is a health lentil salad
After asking our Dietitians at Solutions with Food, a Dietitian favourite for a healthier, quick alternative on the go is take-away sandwich. If there is a take-away sandwich near you, choose:
- Multi-grain bread or a wrap
- Lean meat/meat-alternative (e.g. roast chicken)
- Pack on the salad!
- Have less of or no cheese if you’re watching your fat and sodium intake
- Go easy on the sauce or have no sauce to reduce calories, fat and added sugar
- Say no to salt-bae! Add pepper if desired ONLY to reduce salt intake
Written by our dietitian Nina who is based at our clinics in Goodna, Wavell Heights, Spring Hill & Springwood