10 easy swaps to help maintain a healthy lifestyle

We are all aware of the benefits of maintaining a healthy diet and lifestyle; reducing risk of disease, giving us more energy, helping us to live longer and improving mental health. Yet, sticking to healthy habits can be difficult. 

Many of us set out with good intentions to ‘start on Monday’ or ‘start fresh tomorrow’ but struggle to maintain healthier habits in the long run. There are numerous tips out there on the internet offering new solutions from apple cider vinegar shots to lemon water morning and night, but these strategies never deliver, especially not in the long term. 

Health doesn’t need to be about what we can take out of the diet, what we can restrict, avoid, and shame. As this only leads to increased guilt and reduced self-worth. Making simple swaps can help to improve the overall quality of your diet without restricting and demonising foods. 

These swaps don’t need to be made 100% of the time. Having dessert, takeaway, eating out with friends, not eating fruit for one day, or whatever it may be, will not in itself change your health and turn it a full 360. What matters is the quality of the diet over a longer period of time. Although it’s cliché and said a lot, moderation really is the key. This will help to protect your health in the long run. 

Here are 10 proven yet simple swaps that may help you to stick to a healthy diet and feel your happiest and healthiest. 


1.Fizzy drinks for water 

Helping to lower your overall added sugar intake and helping to keep you hydrated. If you don’t like plain water, try adding citrus fruit, berries or try sugar free squash. 

2. White for wholegrain 

Choosing wholegrain options of breads, pastas or rice can help to add more fibre into the diet, which is essential for great gut health. 

3. Eating on the go to planning ahead 

Having lunch or a snack already with you removes the temptation of the chocolate bar on the go or quick meal deal that you’d actually rather not eat. Preparing a meal which can be made in bulk to eat across the week is great and easy snacks such as nuts and fruit can be great to grab and go with.

4. Meat for beans or pulses 

Adding plant-based foods such as beans, pulses and legumes helps to add more fibre to your diet (great as already discussed) but also provides a wider range of vitamins and minerals and protein. Why not start small by swapping half meat for beans and slowly increasing?

5. Eating while distracted for eating mindfully 

Ever eat a full meal then reflect and think “wow where did that go? I must have been hungry”? Were you sitting in front of the tele for that meal? Scrolling on your phone at the same time? When we eat without full focus, signals to our brain that we are eating are not as strong and tuned it. Hormone release is different, meaning hunger and fullness cues are often missed and we often don’t feel the benefits as much as we would if we sat undistracted and focused on the food we were eating.

6. Sugary breakfast cereal for wholegrain 

A simple swap which can help get your day off to a wholesome start with added fibre, vitamins and minerals and help a slower release of energy across the day. 

7. Adding sugar to cereal or yogurt for adding fruit or nuts 

Try adding to cereal, yogurt, toast, salads, stir fries or curries. This is great if you struggle with the wholegrain cereal swap and are looking for a sweet kick!  

8. Plain sandwich for salad and cheese sandwich 

A plain sandwich such as ham or tuna can be seriously enhanced by adding cheese (providing extra protein, vitamins, and minerals such as calcium) and salad (adding extra vitamins, minerals and fibre). The combination of foods and higher protein content is also likely to keep you feeling fuller for longer. 

9. Creamy sauce for tomato 

This is an easy way to add in some veggies to your meals and to keep the saturated content of meals down. 

10. Salted nuts for unsalted mixed nuts 

Adults should eat no more than 6g of salt per day, equal to around 1 teaspoon. But it’s thought the average UK adult eats around 8.1g per day. Which is not surprising as salt can easily be hidden in the foods we eat and most of us don’t realise how high our intake really is. Using mixed nuts helps to add variety to your diet as well as extra unsaturated fats, protein, and fibre. 

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: