Once you’re past the initial recovery period after weight loss surgery (WLS) you’re likely making positive changes to your nutrition and eating plan so that you can lose weight and gain strength. I’m willing to be you’re probably also a bit concerned about having to eat food that is good FOR you, but doesn’t taste very good! Thankfully, eating healthier doesn’t automatically mean eating without flavor!
Happily, there are several ways you can consume healthier alternatives to those old “favorite” foods that helped you gain the weight you now want to lose without losing the taste, and it mostly depends on how much creativity you put into your meals.
Try the following tips for healthy food options that guarantee great taste:
- Abandon the frying pan. Deep fried food can be really tasty, but unfortunately it’s very far from healthy. However, you can easily replace the deep frying process with baking or grilling. In fact, you’ll end up with juicier meats by baking or grilling properly.
- Use fresh herbs and spices. Instead of using powdered seasonings with additives, why not consider using fresh herbs and spices? They’re definitely more natural, which is a plus. But they also have much more powerful flavors than any store-bought powdered variety you try out. Consider one of the popular kitchen-counter garden kits that will allow you to use fresh herbs as you cook, and even bottle some for future use.
- Replace unhealthy sides with tasty salads, raw vegetables, or fruit. As much as you might love to indulge in a serving of macaroni and cheese or potato salad, you’re doing damage to your body each time you do, not to mention the fact that after your WLS, your body may not be able to handle them any longer. Why not replace them with yummy salads, to which you can add low-fat cheeses and light dressings, and still end up consuming fewer calories than the unhealthy alternatives? Remember to chop your veggies and fruit into sizes that work for you post-surgery, and be prepared to eat a much smaller quantity than you were formerly used to.
- Replace simple carbs with complex carbs. Simple carbs are simply very bad for you! White breads, traditional cakes, and white rice have very little nutritional value, despite what their labels might say. Instead, try incorporating more complex carbs like whole grains, legumes, and sweet potatoes into your meals in quantities that you can handle. By consulting modern recipe books, you can turn those healthy carbs into explosions of flavor!
- Eat lean ground meats. If you’re a meat lover, you can relax! You can still eat meat and do so healthily by ensuring you buy lean ground meats. Instead of grilling fatty burgers, smoked sausages or hot dogs on Super Bowl Sunday, you can treat your body to a lean, juicy ground turkey or ground beef burger mixed with your favorite spices and broiled carefully. Top that off with some grilled vegetables (or even grilled fruit like peaches) and you’ll have a healthy, yet delicious, meal!
- Marinate meats to make them easier to handle. To get the most from your healthy meat options like salmon, turkey and lean steak, marinate them for several hours before cooking in your favorite spices or sauces. Using an option like low-sodium soy sauce to marinate the meat before cooking can really result in great flavors.
- Make your own sauces. Sauces and dressings don’t have to be scratched off your healthy foods list entirely. However, the store-bought ones do because of their overabundance of sugar and salt! Replace those less-healthy varieties with homemade dressings and sauces that allow you to control which ingredients you put in. Getting healthy, juicy barbecued chicken is very possible when you do your own sauces.
- Substitute fruit juices with real fruit. There’s that sweetness about fruit juices that makes them appealing to kids and adults alike. However, you should avoid the excess sugars found in them at all costs. Consider also that fruit juice will simply “slide” through your body and leave you wanting more, while fresh fruit – even when chopped into small pieces – will stay with you longer and be just as enjoyable, plus it’s much better for your body.
Following these tips will help you let go of your old, unhealthy mindset that tells you that deep fried or sugar infused foods are the only ones that taste good. Healthy options definitely exist if you’re interested in maximizing your weight loss and treating your body right.
All your meals can be tasty and healthy at the same time. There’s just no way you can beat having food with good flavor and great health properties. That’s the perfect combination!