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How many times have you started a diet only to cave after a few hours and reach for that sugary snack before day #1 is even over? Too many times to count? Making the decision to eat a little healthier can be tough and sometimes a little scary. Especially if you have failed before or if you believe that it means you will be missing out on all your favorite foods. If you think of your new healthy lifestyle as ‘a diet’ then you are setting yourself up for failure. There is another way.
Rather focus on swapping out some of your regular unhealthy foods for some healthy alternatives. With a little planning and preparation, you can still enjoy many of the treats you love. Except now they are actually good for you! Put in the work to ‘remodel’ some of your favorite meals and recipes with these 31 Clean Eating Healthy Swaps.
- The 12 Clean Eating Rules
- Clean eating Crispy Golden Fish Fingers
- FREE PRINTABLE: 50 Clean Eating Snacks
How NOT to be a Healthy Eating Family
Many of the Moms that contact me have already tried to make changes to their family’s diet, but it just didn’t work out.
Their attempts at healthy eating go a little like this:
1. Mom cooks a new recipe packed with veggies.
2. Kids throw a tanty.
3. Mom throws a tanty.
4. Tears all round.
5.Food gets tossed in the bin.
6.Out comes the frozen pizza.
After a couple nights like these, the new, healthy eating diet falls into the ‘too hard’ bucket and gets forgotten. Until next time.
Concept of Crowding out the Crap
When we started eating Clean I did exactly the same thing. I went a little overboard making every meal from scratch, banning certain foods from the house and expecting my family to go from junk food loving to veggie craving overnight.
That didn’t happen.
A couple of my children were seriously picky eaters and vegetables were a dinnertime nightmare. I started to think that I was failing and maybe my family was different. I doubted that I would ever get them to eat Real food. But I did. And I promise you, you can do it too. Without the fuss.
It starts with a concept I call ‘Crowding out the crap”. It simply means introducing healthier foods to replace the junk in a subtle way without causing panic and resistance in the home. You can do this by:
- Remaking your usual recipes using healthy, real food ingredients. Making small changes to your regular recipes often go unnoticed like adding extra vegetables, or changing your brand of pasta sauce.
- Replace unhealthy foods with a healthy alternative (see these 31 Clean Eating Swaps). I recommend making these changes one at a time and give your family time to accept the change before rushing into the next one. For example buying wholewheat bread or changing to brown rice.
Your goal is to make a healthy lifestyle a long term commitment. This isn’t a race. Small changes that are sustainable are more valuable than a quick ‘diet’.
FREE PRINTABLE: 31 Clean Eating Swaps
To download the printable, simply click on the image below to open up the full list in a new window. From there you can save or print.