You eat it. You enjoy it. Then you sit with 10 pounds of guilt wrapped around your stomach and a sharp feeling of regret in your throat. Has that ever happened to you? It’s definitely happened to me. I have a weakness. Ice cream bars – you know, the kind with a creamy center, but a hard crispy outer chocolate shell. And don’t get me started on the crispies they put in the shell or the soft caramel layered in between. Yes – you know what I am talking about.
So, why on a health blog am I talking about decadent ice cream bars and making your mouth water? Well, first because it’s important to recognize you are not alone in craving sweets, fats and other taste-bud exciting treats. But also, because I want to show you how to transform some of your favorite “junk food” indulgences into guilt-free pleasures!
Too often when people try to eat healthier, they eliminate their favorite foods. This only ends in frustration and deprivation. These feelings create a negativity about food and you definitely don’t want to eat something with a negative attitude. When you are trying to make healthy changes in the kitchen, it is best to concentrate on what you CAN eat, rather than focus on what you should not eat. Adding in new foods can be exciting and fun! But if you still crave your favorite past times, then make healthier versions. For example, my husband loves pizza, and I just adore nachos. Rather than go out to get these “junk food” treats, we make them at home, and have a fun time doing so!
Scroll down to find out how you can transform your favorite junk foods into guilt-free pleasures!
PIZZA: Pizza’s reputation as a junk food is far from what its original Neapolitan creators had in mind. The main downfall of pizza is the amount of cheap cheese restaurants put on the pies. This adds loads of unneeded saturated fat, and masks the
other flavors in the pizza pie. Pizza essential is just dough with delicious ingredients on top, baked in an oven. Based on that definition, you can top it with anything you desire – making it as healthy (or unhealthy) as you wish! For example, pizza is a fabulous opportunity to eat your vegetables. Recently, I made a pizza with leeks, mushrooms, olives, swiss chard, basil and tomatoes. Topped with a bit of fresh mozzarella, this was an amazing and easy meal enjoyed by the entire family. You can use whatever vegetables you like and pile them high. Add in greens like spinach, chard or broccoli raab or use more traditional toppings like basil, mushrooms or olives.
NACHOS: You can’t ask for a more enjoyable snack in my opinion. However, when ordering at a restaurant, nachos are often topped with GMO chips, imitation cheese, loads of sour cream and oily refried beans. The idea for nachos can be a foundation for a successful and delicious snack or dinner. In place of standard chips, try using organic baked blue corn chips or roasted potatoes (Check out my favorite recipe from Anthony Williams, Medical Medium of Potato Nachos!) Top your base with fresh black, pinto and/or kidney beans, homemade guacamole, loads of vegetables (my favorites are butternut squash, zucchini, peas, spinach and tomatoes), and a good quality cheese as a light topping. Substitute plain Greek yogurt for sour cream or use an organic version of sour cream.
To start, using grass-fed beef or buffalo meat will give you leaner patty with added nutrients. Grass-fed meats are lower in total fat than grain-fed products and give you two to six times more of a type of omega-3 fatty acids, which benefit your heart and brain. Sandwich that patty with a whole grain roll or if you are gluten-free or on a low-carb plan, then use lettuce, cabbage or collard green leaves to wrap. Finally, top it off with fresh, seasonal vegetables like tomatoes, lettuce, pickles, radishes, or go BIG with caramelized onions, sauteed mushrooms or sliced avocado. For more information on the benefits of grass-fed beef, visit http://groomandstyle.com/benefits-grass-fed-products.
Lastly, we have to talk about dessert because nothing tastes worse than chocolate with a side of guilt. Besides the chocolate ice cream bar mentioned above, my absolute favorite non-guilty pleasure is chocolate peanut butter cups. A while back I ran a series of No Guilt Sweets classes and in this class we made a variety of amazing treats like cookie balls, mango banana pudding vanilla chia pudding, raw cherry oat cookies and of course my PB cups. All these recipes included anti-inflammatory and nutrient dense ingredients that work FOR your body. They are a hit with adults and kids!
To get all these no -guilt sweet recipes and more just click below to download my FREE gift of 5 No Guilt Sweets recipes!
Thanks for stopping by! I wish you a delicious day!