Stuck in a Food Rut?
Ever feel like you’re stuck in an episode of The Twilight Zone while your grocery shopping?
It’s always more of the same….apples, grapes, carrots, celery.…you get the idea. We get used to buying the same things because we’re used to them – it’s quick and easy.
But later, when you reach for a snack or open the fridge, you’re instantly hit with the “ugh, this again?!” feeling….we’ve all been there. But this year, you can get out of your food rut with simple switches that will liven up the party on your plate.
In fact, our bodies thrive on a diversified diet. Different food provides different nutrients that our bodies and complex organ systems need. Just like your exercise routine, your food routine will benefit greatly when you feed it different foods…different foods benefit different parts of your body. And we need our entire body operating at its best.
So, here are some fruit and vegetable alternatives to get you out of your food rut and jump-start the New Year!
(Replace with: banana or orange)
An apple a day keeps the doctors away; we know. But the same apple every day gets old over the years. So, you can either opt to try different types of apples. From Fuji to Gala, there are tons of varieties to keep your taste buds interested. Or if it’s a horse of a completely different color you’re craving, try replacing with a banana or orange. Both are easy to grab on the go and are packed full of plenty of nutrients like apples. Oranges, are not only packed with vitamin C, but also assist in digestion; bananas, on the other hand, are known for being potassium-rich.
(Replace with: cherries or strawberries)
Grapes, both green and red, are a great snack. In fact, I use them often as a healthy alternative to potato chips. They offer the same crunchy sensation as chips, but with way fewer calories. It’s nice to have a bowl to snack on while you watch a movie, but when you’ve had one grape too many, try cherries or strawberries. Cherries are a delicious alternative that have the same sweet flavor but with a more refreshing, unique twist. Not to mention, they are high in antioxidants, giving you more bang for your buck…just watch out for cherry-stained fingers! Or if cherries are too tangy for your taste buds, strawberries offer the same “snacky” sensation and still have lots of the same antioxidants along with vitamin C.
(Replace with: cauliflower or Brussels sprouts)
I love broccoli. I always have, even as a child. But this is not the same sentiment for everyone. I’m sure some people can only tolerate it. As good for you as it may be, I do understand the need to switch out the veggie every so often. Next time, try cauliflower, which offers much of the same nutritional value as broccoli, including being high in fiber, or Brussels sprouts, which are part of the same plant species as broccoli and cauliflower and bring a lot of the same health benefits to the table – pun intended.
(Replace with: sweet potatoes or turnips)
Who doesn’t love a warm baked potato complete with your favorite toppings? Simple, delicious comfort food — not to mention very easy to prepare. But once in a while, we want something more, something different. So, this week, try sweet potatoes or turnips. They all belong to the same starchy, plant family so nutritional value remains consistent with potatoes. And to make it an even easier transition, you can prepare them the same: mashed, baked, fried…no need to learn new cooking methods.
Eat your heart out!