Well first off, Happy New Year! I definitely slacked on blogging towards the second half of 2012 but I want to get back more into it this year. One thing I want to write about is my goal of getting healthier this year. Ideally I would like to lose some weight as a result, but at the very least I want to feel better about myself and know that I am treating my body better. So, I am going to do my best to post weekly about what I am doing in my life to achieve this goal.
The easiest way, I think, to start getting healthier is to change what you eat. You don't even have to completely change your diet- just make small changes towards foods that are better for you. Any little bit helps. My post today will address some ideas for making your lunch healthier.
1) Swap out bread for vegetables. Maybe you're thinking, 'how do you make a sandwich without bread?' There are plenty of ways! You can make a lettuce wrap. Practically any cold cut tastes good in lettuce; simply use it instead of bread and make your sandwich the exact same way otherwise. Another vegetable that you can use as a substitute for bread is cucumber. Cut a section of cucumber in half lengthwise, then cut out some of the inside, creating a well (like in celery) but leaving enough around the edges so that the cucumber is still sturdy. Then pile on your favorite cold cuts and toppings into each half.
2) Use better condiments. Mayonnaise may taste great (believe me, it's my favorite sandwich spread!), but there are plenty of other condiments that pack a lot of flavor with a lot less calories and fat. Mustard is one option, but there are also plenty of others that may not immediately come to mind. Balsamic vinegar is one great alternative, and you can sometimes find flavored balsamic vinegars if you want a little bit different flavor. You could also use other vinegars, like rice wine vinegar, depending on the taste you're going for. Stay away from salad dressings or oil-based sauces.
3) Pick healthier sides. Chips are easy, but other things are better for you. If you want to stay with something salty, nuts are a great option. They have protein that chips don't have. Fruits and vegetables seem like an obvious side, but it still takes a conscious effort to pick those over less nutritious options. If you pick applesauce, look for one with no added sugar or sweeteners. And if you really can't give up your chips, go for a baked option instead of fried.
These are some of the tips I'm incorporating into my routine to get healthier this year. Hopefully they can help you, too! Let me know if you have any ideas you'd like me to share that have worked in your life.