No matter who you are, we are all culprits of those sudden food cravings – usually the less unhealthy, sugary kinda types. But no matter the food craving I like to think there are lots of healthy alternatives. Obviously, all in moderation of course – this isn’t a message for you to start shovelling your face with a bag of nuts because it’s the healthier option… Nope, it doesn’t work like that (sadly). So i’ve put together a list of my go to healthier alternatives for the kind of cravings I have.
You’re craving a packet of crisps…
• Healthy popcorn – You can find a huge range of healthier popcorns in supermarkets now with a lot less calories and fat than your average bag of crisps. My favourite brand right now are Propercorn – their new crunch corn is delicious!
• Oven roasted Kale – Ok, bear with me… Whilst it may not sound the most inviting I love this as a go to snack. Sprinkle a little oil, pepper and salt and put in the oven for around 30 minutes and these cure my crisp cravings instantly! Especially with the crunch.
• Seaweed snacks – Again, another healthy alternative with that crunch. Most packs have just under 30 calories.
• Rice snacks – A popular and perfect macro friendly snack that can easily be topped with lots of yummy (but healthy) toppings.
• Nuts – I love nuts for curing a hunger craving. They’re high in fibre, healthy fats and will leave you leaving fuller for longer.
You’re craving chips/fries…
• Sweet potato fries – One of my favourites which I always have instead of chips now. Rub with oil and sprinkle with paprika before popping them in the oven and they taste amazing!
• Baked potato/baked fries – You can quite easily have chips – just minus the frying and greasy oil. Just bake them! Easy peasy!
You’re craving chocolate
• Cacao – A great alternative which I mostly use to keep my tummy happy! Mix cacao powder with coconut oil for a chocolate sauce or freeze to create your own chocolate bark/bar. Mmmm.
• 75% (and over) dark chocolate – Life wouldn’t be complete without dark chocolate right? Right. Dark chocolate is a healthier option than your usual dairy milk chocolate with proven health benefits too. I mean, it would be rude not to, right?
• Hot Chocolate Options – These are a life saver… I get my hot chocolate options sachets down the tea/coffee isle in Tescos and they’re a little saver for those pesky evening cravings with only 44 calories… perfecto.
• Square bars – I love these bars. They’re vegan friendly and honestly taste just like chocolate! They’re too good to be true. My favourite flavour is the almond one.
• Raw Chocolate Co. – Raw chocolate with no dairy, no added nasty and definitely no added sugar… Just pure goodness.
• Baked oats/oats – If I could I would have oats all day, everyday. You can choose literally any flavour and top with all the goodies. For a more cake texture then try baking your oats instead of cooking them in the microwave!
• Make your own! There are so many healthier alternatives to baking now. One of my favourite companies, Sukrin have created replacement products to use instead of your usual butter, sugar etc… You can definitely say bye bye to guilt ridden desserts!
• Medjool Dates – You probably won’t believe this one until try it but this is one of my favourites. They taste just like caramel. You can either have them on your own or another way I love them is blitz up with a little coconut oil and it’s just like a caramel paste. OK, brb craving has just hit…
• Dried mango/pineapple – Find the ones that have no added sugar and these are so delicious.
• Creative Nature Superfoods Flapjack – Perfect hit for that sweet tooth – The ginger, peanut and goji goodness flapjack bars are my go to’s.
I’m more of a savoury kind of girl so this is my problem area. By the end of the week I always end up craving pizza, mexican or typical comfort food. However, there are ways you can turn these dishes into healthier options. E.g, I LOVEEEE pizza (who doesn’t?) and a great way to make this healthier is to create your own so you know what ingredients you’ve used. Use a flatbread/tortilla as the base and top with nutritious and filling ingredients. My favourite is chicken, peppers, mushrooms, onions and spinach. Just use a tomato puree base/sauce (that isn’t packed with sugar) and alas, you have a healthier alternative!
You can do this with almost any dinners just find replacements. Choose low fat cheese instead of normal, use a healthier oil, create your own sauces and bake rather than fry! It’s not rocket science.
Although it’s great to budge the cravings when they happen I do not promote this kind of lifestyle constantly. It would be ridiculous to live a life without enjoying the finer foods in life which is why I live a balanced 80/20 lifestyle. If I want something that badly then I’ll have it – in moderation, of course. However, when I know i’ve over indulged a little too much then i’ll reach for the healthier option instead and for me, this really works. But remember, a lot of cravings come from boredom or dehydration although, if you can’t kick the craving after a couple of hours then do yourself a favour and grab that chocolate bar!