Tired of eating unhealthy foods or making poor food choices on special occasions like Valentine’s Day, weddings, or work functions? Sick of feeling bloated, fatigued, or on a sugar high followed by a big low? One effective strategy is through mindful food swaps – replacing less nutritious sweet treats with healthier organic alternatives. By making mindful substitutions, you can enhance your nutrient intake, reduce unhealthy fats and sugars, support your wellbeing and vitality, and enjoy celebrating special occasions knowing you are making healthier choices. Check out these simply healthy swaps:
CONVENTIONAL CHOCOLATE FOR ORGANIC DARK CHOCOLATE
Not all chocolate is created equal. If you want to treat yourself and your loved ones, choose quality organic dark chocolate products for a healthy indulgence. When comparing milk chocolate to dark chocolate, the latter typically offers more health benefits due to its higher cocoa content – dark chocolate, for example, contains higher levels of magnesium and iron. Dark chocolate with a cocoa content of 70% or higher also contains more antioxidants and is generally lower in sugar and added fats. The rich flavour of dark chocolate means you’re less likely to binge too – so enjoy as a standalone snack or try replacing your current milk chocolate ingredients with quality 70% Organic Dark Chocolate Drops in baking.
SOFT DRINKS FOR INFUSED WATER
Swapping soft drinks for healthier alternatives such as infused water can significantly reduce your intake of empty calories and added sugar. Infused water will help you hit your daily hydration goals without the harmful effects of artificial sweeteners or high-fructose corn syrup, which is commonly found in many soft drinks and is associated with weight gain, obesity, and an increased risk of chronic diseases like type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease. According to data (2017-18) from the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare, a whopping 69% of 15–24-year-olds consume sugar-sweetened drinks or diet drinks, so get swapping your products now. Try the following water infusions:
- Slices of lemon, strawberry & mint added to a glass or water bottle for a refreshing start to the day.
- Add a Ginger Shot to a jug of water for a citrus zing over lunch dates.
- Brew your favourite organic tea (peppermint or green tea), add sparkling mineral water and enjoy on the way to work.
- Add cucumber, lemon, and celery to sparkling mineral water and serve on your Valentine’s Day picnic.
- Add organic Apple Cider Vinegar for an amazing daily tonic.
REFINED SUGARS FOR NATURAL SWEETENERS
Swapping out refined sugars (white sugar/artificial sugar) for natural products like stevia leaf powder, apple sauce and organic coconut sugar, will deliver all the sweetness you need for those special treats without the added calories or adverse effects of refined sugars. Stevia, for example, has zero calories and is at least 10 times sweeter than sugar yet doesn’t spike blood sugar levels, making it suitable for individuals with diabetes or those watching their carbohydrate intake. Organic coconut sugar is minimally processed to retain its natural high mineral content, unlike conventional white sugar. It also has a delicious toffee-like flavour and can be used for baking, coffee, tea, and desserts – perfect if you’re planning some home baking treats this Valentine’s Day in Australia.
LOLLIES FOR DRIED FRUIT
Want to surprise someone special with delicious, sweet treats? Then ditch conventional lollies for sweet organic products from Australia, like organic dried fruit. Unlike many conventional lollies found in supermarkets, organic dried fruits are GMO-free and contain no sulphites, preservatives, added sugar or additives. The dried fruit is simply ripened to taste, sliced, and dried, retaining essential vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants. Yum!
Tip: Every fruit, whether fresh or dried, has calories, so enjoy dried fruit in moderation if you want to keep your calorie count down.
Other Swaps …
REFINED GRAINS FOR WHOLE GRAINS
Whether you’re cooking at home or eating out for a special occasion, simple changes such as swapping out refined grains (think white bread and white rice) for whole grains like brown rice, black rice and quinoa can deliver a multitude of health benefits. These include increasing dietary fibre to help maintain bowel health and controlling cholesterol and glucose levels. Whole grains also help keep you fuller for longer – great news if you are trying to lose weight. While eating brown rice and wholegrain bread may not be top of mind for a special meal, it’s worth considering making this change to your daily diet. Why? According to research, the consumption of grains and cereals in Australia from wholegrain or high fibre sources sits at just 33.7%, so there is plenty of room for improvement! Want to take it up a notch? Then choose organic, wholegrain products sourced from trusted sources in Australia.
Want to try a few healthier swaps for Valentine’s Day? Try these treats.