Monday, 5 February 2018

Healthy Food Alternatives & Substitutes for 2018

healthy alternatives & food substitutes

January is the month to turn things around every year and this year, we want you to turn your diet around. It’s definitely the best of both worlds when you can have your favourite foods while also gaining the required nutrition for your body. With the Healthy Alternatives range at Nature’s Basket, you can tweak your everyday dishes to become more balanced and wholesome, without any compromise on the taste. So read about these 5  heart-healthy food substitutes and eat the same things that you’ve always loved, but in a healthier way! 

1. Barley Roti

Barley Roti
Picture Courtesy: That Fiji Taste

It may come as a surprise to many, but this staple Indian bread – wheat chapatti/roti, isn’t the healthiest thing to eat every day. Wheat may be healthier than Maida, but it’s still high in allergens, has a high glycemic index causing a faster spike in blood sugar levels, and over time builds insulin resistance leading to diabetic and digestive problems.

But we can’t just stop eating chapatis of course. The solution healthy replacement is alternative flours! There are many low calorie alternatives available for wheat flour, like rye, bajra, jau/barley, jowar/sorghum, buckwheat etc. and all you need to do is make the switch.

Spoilt for choice already? Our recommended substitute for wheat chapatis is buckwheat flour chapatis. While the other alternative flours are also super rich in nutrients, buckwheat is the best source of high-quality, easily digestible proteins making it a healthy substitute for meat. It is also high in fibre, essential vitamins and minerals. But what truly sets it apart is that buckwheat is gluten-free! With such a power-packed flour at your disposal with no risk of gluten, why choose anything else? Switch your everyday wheat flour to the Healthy Alternatives – Buckwheat Flour for a healthier, gluten-free 2018!

2. Black Rice

Black Rice
Picture Courtesy: Pinterest

Another ingredient in our diet that may not be the best option to consume every day is white rice. White rice is essentially processed rice, removing the outer layer containing the bran – which is where the fibre, protein, and other nutrients lie. So how do we make sure that we continue eating this staple food while also meeting our nutritional requirements?

Black Rice is the answer. It is a low fat alternative to white rice. While both black and brown rice are low in fat and a good source of healthy carbs, black rice is lower in calories, a better source of fibre and has higher amount of anti-oxidants as well. In fact, the bran of black rice contains one of the highest levels of anti-oxidants found in any known rice variety. Say goodbye to your regular white rice and make some space for the super-nutritious Healthy Alternatives – Whole Grain Black Rice now! 

3. Poha

Poha
Picture Courtesy: The Melting Pot

Poha is a staple breakfast dish for most of us, and for good reason. This delicious ingredient when cooked with the right spices and garnished heartily with fresh herbs, might as well be the food of gods. This flattened rice recipe is often considered a healthy breakfast item, and while that may be true, we can make it healthier by using the right kind of poha.

White poha is made out of white rice, which is stripped away of its essential nutrients. A healthier variation of the regular white poha is the red poha, which is made from red rice. Red rice doesn’t go under excessive processing unlike the white rice, and thus remains high in fibre, vitamin B, and various minerals. It also has anti-oxidant properties which help in preventing the risk of many diseases. The best part? Red poha can be used in the same way as white poha! So go ahead and get the Healthy Alternatives – Organic Red Poha and enjoy your favourite breakfast dish while making a healthier choice.

4. Bread

Bread
Picture Courtesy: Breads Bakery

For most people, a day starting without bread is not a day at all. If you’re one of those people, this is for you. We already know the harmful effects of white bread, so let’s keep that one out of the pantry forever. But what about the seemingly healthy wheat/brown bread that has taken over the markets now? If the brown/wheat bread that you’re buying isn’t 100% whole wheat, it contains enriched flour which gives you a sugar spike and crash without any nutritional value.

But don’t fret – there are plenty of alternatives available to satisfy your needs without compromising your health! Choosing any high-fibre bread instead of the regular brown bread is always a good option. The word ‘whole’ is what you’re looking for in the ingredients because whole grains is where the nutrition lies. Our pick for a super-healthy bread that you can switch to is the sourdough bread. This bread is not just highly nutritious, with various vitamins, minerals and a good balance of proteins and fatty acids, but it’s also gluten-free! Get the Healthy Alternatives – Cereal Sourdough Bread for a fibre-rich, nutritious breakfast every morning! 

5. Pasta

Pasta
Picture Courtesy: The Culinary Cook

This universally loved Italian item has almost become a part of everyone’s daily diet – from pasta salads, to main dishes, it’s everywhere. Being a popular base ingredient for most salads, it’s important to choose the right kind of pasta. If you’re using the regular white pasta in your salads and letting yourself think that it’s a healthy meal, it’s time to burst that bubble. Like every other white-product, white pasta is also stripped off its nutrition during the milling process, letting go of all the fibre, protein, and vitamins. What remains on your plate is a refined carb, spiking up blood sugar levels and encouraging cravings and weight gain.

This is where the alternative-pasta game steps up. With options like quinoa pasta, whole wheat pasta, buckwheat pasta, beetroot pasta, etc. you’ll be surprised just how many healthy alternatives there are to choose from. Our recommended pasta for those who like to keep it healthy and tasty is the quinoa pasta. It goes well with all salad recipes, tastes amazing with a host of pasta sauces and what’s more? It’s also gluten-free. A complete protein with high nutritional value, adding quinoa to your diet is a definite plus. Treat yourself to a delicious pasta salad with the Healthy Alternatives – Quinoa Gluten-Free Fusilli Pasta for a wholesome meal.

With all these healthy options available to you now, eating good has never been easier! Get your #HealthyAlternatives for everyday food at the Nature’s Basket  store now.

Inspired to add more healthy  food replacements to your daily diet? Check out how you can have healthy snacks  to make those eating breaks guilt-free.


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