25.Sep.2012 Healthy Food Choices

Lower-Calorie Alternatives for Your Diet

Making healthy food choices starts with realizing that there are healthy alternatives to many of the foods that you already eat.

Here is a list of foods that you may buy on a regular basis and a list of healthier alternatives for you to chose from.

Higher-Fat Foods (Left) vs. Healthy Food Choices (Right)

  • Evaporated whole milk
  • Whole milk
  • Ice cream
  • Whipping cream
  • Sour cream
  • Cream cheese
  • Cheese (cheddar, Swiss, jack)
  • American cheese
  • Regular (4%) cottage cheese
  • Whole milk mozzarella cheese
  • Whole milk ricotta cheese
  • Coffee cream (1/2 and 1/2) or nondairy creamer (liquid, powder)
  • Evaporated fat-free (skim) or reduced-fat (2%) milk
  • Low-fat (1%), reduced-fat (2%), or fat-free (skim) milk
  • Sorbet, sherbet, low fat or fat-free frozen yogurt, or ice
  • Imitation whipped cream (made with fat-free [skim] milk)
  • Plain low-fat yogurt
  • Neufchatel or “light” cream cheese or fat-free cream cheese
  • Reduced-calorie cheese, low-calorie processed cheeses, etc.
  • Fat-free cheese
  • Fat-free American cheese or other types of fat-free cheeses
  • Low-fat (1%) or reduced-fat (2%) cottage cheese
  • Part-skim milk, low-moisture mozzarella cheese
  • Part-skim milk ricotta cheese
  • Low-fat (1%) or reduced-fat (2%) milk or non-fat dry milk powder


Pastas, Grains, and Cereals
Higher-Fat Foods (Left) vs. Healthy Food Choices (Right) 

  • Ramen noodles
  • Pasta with white sauce (alfredo)
  • Pasta with cheese sauce
  • Granola
  • Rice or noodles (spaghetti, macaroni, etc.)
  • Pasta with red sauce (marinara)
  • Pasta with vegetables (primavera)
  • Bran flakes, crispy rice, etc.
  • Cooked grits or oatmeal
  • Reduced-fat granola


Fish, Meat, and Poultry
Higher-Fat Foods (Left) vs. Healthy Food Choices (Right)

  • Coldcuts or lunch meats (bologna, salami, liverwurst, etc.)
  • Hot dogs (regular)
  • Bacon or sausage
  • Regular ground beef
  • Chicken or turkey with skin, duck, or goose
  • Oil-packed tuna
  • Beef (chuck, rib, brisket)
  • Pork (spareribs, untrimmed loin)
  • Frozen breaded fish or fried fish (homemade or commercial)
  • Whole eggs
  • Frozen TV dinners (containing more than 13 grams of fat per serving)
  • Chorizo sausage
  • Low-fat coldcuts (95 to 97% fat-free lunch meats, low-fat pressed meats)
  • Lower-fat hot dogs
  • Canadian bacon or lean ham
  • Extra lean ground beef such as ground round or ground turkey (read labels)
  • Chicken or turkey without skin (white meat)
  • Water-packed tuna (rinse to reduce sodium content)
  • Beef (round, loin) (trimmed of external fat)
  • Pork tenderloin or trimmed, lean smoked ham
  • Fish or shellfish, unbreaded (fresh, frozen, canned in water)
  • Egg whites or egg substitutes
  • Frozen TV dinners (containing less than 13 grams of fat per serving and lower in sodium)
  • Turkey sausage, drained well (read label)
  • Vegetarian sausage (made with tofu)


Baked Items
Higher-Fat Foods (Left) vs. Healthy Food Choices (Right)

  • Croissants, brioches, etc.
  • Donuts, sweet rolls, muffins, scones, or pastries
  • Party crackers
  • Cake (pound, chocolate, yellow)
  • Cookies
    • Hard french rolls or soft brown ’n serve rolls
    • English muffins, bagels, reduced-fat or fat-free muffins or scones
    • Low-fat crackers (choose lower in sodium)
    • Saltine or soda crackers (choose lower in sodium)
    • Cake (angel food, white, gingerbread)
    • Reduced-fat or fat-free cookies (graham crackers, ginger snaps, fig bars) (compare calorie level)



Sweets and Snacks
Higher-Fat Foods (Left) vs. Healthy Food Choices (Right) 

  • Nuts
  • Ice cream, e.g., cones or bars
  • Custards or puddings (made with whole milk)
  • Popcorn (air-popped or light microwave), fruits, vegetables
  • Frozen yogurt, frozen fruit or chocolate pudding bars
  • Puddings (made with skim milk)


Oils, Fats, and Salad Dressings
Higher-Fat Foods (Left) vs. Healthy Food Choices (Right)

  • Regular margarine or butter
  • Regular mayonnaise
  • Regular salad dressings
  • Butter or margarine on toast or bread
  • Oils, shortening, or lard
  • Light spread margarines, diet margarine, or whipped butter, tub or squeeze bottle
  • Light or diet mayonnaise or mustard
  • Reduced-calorie or fat-free salad dressings, lemon juice, or plain, herb flavored, or wine vinegar
  • Jelly, jam, or honey on bread or toast
  • Nonstick cooking spray for stir-frying or sautéing
  • As a substitute for oil or butter, use applesauce or prune puree in baked goods

Higher-Fat Foods (Left) vs. Healthy Food Alternatives (Right) 

  • Canned cream soups
  • Canned beans and franks
  • Gravy (homemade with fat and/or milk)
  • Fudge sauce
  • Avocado on sandwiches
  • Guacamole dip or refried beans with lard
  • Canned broth-based soups
  • Canned baked beans in tomato sauce
  • Gravy mixes made with water or homemade with the fat skimmed off and fat-free milk
  • Chocolate syrup
  • Cucumber slices or lettuce leaves
  • Salsa

More Healthy Eating Tips 

Healthy Food Choices to How to Burn Belly Fat Home

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