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Eating healthy all the time can be a chore. I know for me , I don’t always have the time to meal prep at home , but when I am in a rush  to make a quick dish , I know for the most part the food is going to be as wholesome and pure as possible because of the ingredient’s I have stocked.

The best technique I use to make sure  that I’m eating healthy meals regularly is to simply replace unhealthy common ingredients with healthier ones.

Yes, refining the pantry with more pure, unrefined items.  The purpose is to cut fat, sugar, and calories out of your favorite recipes using healthier ingredient substitutions—without slashing any flavor.

I know that these aren’t all perfect replacements that work in every single recipe, but in general, I’ve found them to be healthier options that work in a lot of recipes, but replace it when you can.

If unhealthy ingredients aren’t around, you don’t use them. That simple.

Once you start using them more often you’ll actually notice and feel a huge difference in taste and the way your food digests.

Below are some items I ditched (or reduced using) in favor for healthy alternatives in the worlds of sweeteners, oils , flours, and milks.

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Refine Your Common Pantry Items For These Unrefined Healthy Substitutes:

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[thb_contentbox heading=”Potato Chips ” image=”3870″]While enjoying an occasional handful of chips won’t cause irreparable damage to someone consuming an otherwise healthy diet, the real dangers arise when you consume chips on a daily basis or regularly choose them over healthier options. With no nutritional value they are the foundation for Weight gain, very high sodium, and high cholesterol levels.[/thb_contentbox]
[thb_contentbox heading=”Replace Potato Chips with Kale Chips” image=”3849″]Kale has many health benefits, from weight management to healthy eyesight. For the most part Kale chips satisfy both the crunchiness and savory flavor we love from chips. Kale chips are very easy to make. Start by tossing chopped kale in a small amount of olive oil and then baking the chips in the oven until they are crispy. Toss Himalayan pink salt over and there you have it. If you don’t have the time to make them, you can opt for air popped popcorn 9x less saturated fat.[/thb_contentbox]
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[thb_contentbox heading=” White Rice ” image=”3856″]I don’t consider rice to be horrible or something to be scared if eaten in moderation. But if you grew up in a Spanish household like I did, rice is the staple side dish and it not only gets tiring, but it’s not good eat every single day. Many popular brands of White rice, have been refined to the point where the husk, bran and germ layers are removed, so just the white inner kernel remains. Removing the outer layers removes much of the nutritional value.[/thb_contentbox]
[thb_contentbox heading=”Replace white or Brown Rice with Quinoa ” image=”3857″]Quinoa is gluten-free, high in protein and one of the few plant foods that contain all nine essential amino acids so it should make for a more filling addition to your diet than rice. Unlike rice, it aids in weight loss, keeps your gut healthy , contains flavanoids, disease-fighting antioxidants, which may may play a role in the prevention of cardiovascular disease, cancer, osteoporosis and diabetes. [/thb_contentbox]
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[thb_contentbox heading=”Canola and Vegetable Oil” image=”3902″]90% of canola oil has been genetically modified . Most cooking oils go through an insane amount of processing with chemical solvents, steamers, neutralizers, de-waxers, bleach and deodorizers before they end up in the bottle.
The “solvent” used to extract canola oil is neurotoxin hexane. Hexane is a cheap byproduct from gasoline production, that’s a serious occupational hazard and toxic air pollutant. [/thb_contentbox]
[thb_contentbox heading=”Replace Refined Oils for Unrefined Virgin Coconut Oil ” image=”3862″]Coconut oil is almost completely saturated fat, but don’t let that scare you. That’s because the tropical saturated fat in coconut oil is made up of medium-chain triglycerides (MCT), which have been shown to actually reduce cholesterol and obesity. Nutiva’s virgin oil is organic, expeller cold-pressed, unrefined and never deodorized or bleached. It tolerates temperatures up to about 350 degrees, so it’s great for most baking and medium-high heat sauteing.Other oils that are good for high heat cooking include avocado oil and almond oi[/thb_contentbox]
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[thb_contentbox heading=”Mayonnaise ” image=”3864″]Commercial mayonnaise is usually made with unhealthy fats and offers very little nutrition. Most types of mayonnaise found at the grocery store, including the low-fat and low-calorie versions, may negatively affect your health In addition to containing pro-inflammatory omega-6 oils and added sugars, commercial mayonnaise also contains a lot of artificial ingredients, such as preservatives, additives and monosodium glutamate, or MSG.[/thb_contentbox]
[thb_contentbox heading=”Replace Mayonnaise For Smashed Avocado ” image=”3866″]The hype is real. Avocado contains half the fat (4.5g to 9g) and is cholesterol free. To substitute an avocado for mayonnaise, cut a ripe avocado into cubes then mash it well using a fork or the back of a spoon. Then, use anywhere you would mayo! Try it with tuna sandwiches and potato salad. Hummus & Mustard are also good alternatives.[/thb_contentbox]
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[thb_contentbox heading=”Refined Sugar” image=”3868″]Refined sugars are classified as potential poisons to the body. They provide only empty calories lacking in other nutrients and minerals. In addition, they can drain the body of nutrients because of their demanding digestion requirements. According to MyPlate.gov, you should limit your intake of refined sugar, opting for foods that provide carbohydrate in a more complex form.[/thb_contentbox]
[thb_contentbox heading=”Replace Refined Sugar for Organic Raw Honey ” image=”3895″]Organic Raw Honey is not just a sugar, it’s actually a food. Organic Raw honey contains amino acids, specific types of electrolytes and antioxidants, and antimicrobial compounds that can support the health of your body. Make sure the substitutes is pure, raw honey.It’s also a good source of antioxidants, called phenolic compounds
has antibacterial and antifungal Properties and can aid in digestive issues. Please use it sparingly. One tablespoon, one to two times daily, is a good, healthy amount that most people can do well with. You can also replace sugar for green leaf organic stevia – NOT TRUVIA[/thb_contentbox]
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[thb_contentbox heading=”Sports Drinks” image=”3917″]Sports beverages contain a laundry list of unhealthy ingredients such as high fructose corn syrup, preservatives, sodium, refined sugar and artificial sweeteners. Sports drinks claim to help you hydrate better than water. But, in truth, they have little to support those claims. Study after study has found that the additives in sports drinks have no effect on water absorption in our bodies. Nothing gets more water into your system than, shockingly, water.


[thb_contentbox heading=”Replace Sports Drinks for Fruit Infused water ” image=”3889″]I love fruit infused water. About 20 percent of the nutrients in the fruits used in your infused water will be absorbed by your beverage. This means that you get great-tasting water that has the added benefit of vitamins and antioxidants. For example, fruits like strawberry are packed full of vitamin C and combining fruits with other healthy ingredients – like basil or mint – means you can also get important minerals like iron and additional antioxidants from your infusion.
Depending on ho you combine the fruits you can get a collagen stimulating blend in for glowing skin [/thb_contentbox]
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[thb_contentbox heading=”Candy ” image=”3907″]No explanation necessary[/thb_contentbox]
[thb_contentbox heading=”Replace Candy for Frozen Grapes ” image=”3875″]Frozen grapes are the perfect low-cal solution for dieters that can’t live without dessert. You can enjoy one full cup of these refreshing, bite-sized nibbles for only 100 calories — a phenomenally sweet bargain. And, because the grapes are frozen solid, they take a while to eat, stretching out your snack time.[/thb_contentbox]
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[thb_contentbox heading=”Milk” image=”3876″] I personally hate milk, from the way it taste’s to the way it makes me feel after. I know that it is expected of us to drink milk because we need calcium, but it’s not as if there are no other sources of calcium out there. In fact, there are many other options that contain more calcium than milk does. Also let me be vain, it’s been said that Milk has been linked to acne, and from research there is an abundance of a hormone called IGF-1 in milk, which is really good for baby cows, but not for you. IGF-1 is a growth hormone and it tends to make your acne grow big instead. IGF-1 is one of several factors that cause inflammation in humans, and which eventually lead to acne.[/thb_contentbox]
[thb_contentbox heading=”Replace Milk For Almond Milk” image=”3877″]While almond milk is becoming more and more popular, it’s important to note that it doesn’t provide as much protein or calcium to be a complete substitute, so make sure you receive adequate amounts from other sources. One cup only has one gram of protein versus 8 grams in cow’s milk, and 2 milligrams of calcium versus 300 milligrams in cow’s milk.
Almond milk contains 50% of your daily vitamin E intake, which contains antioxidant properties essential to your skin’s health, such as protecting it against sun damage. So drink up to good skin.[/thb_contentbox]
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[thb_contentbox heading=”Pasta ” image=”3879″]Just like rice and white flour, big brand pasta grains are processed and refined to the point that I would not even call them food! Refined carbohydrates are fake foods and should be avoided if you want to build health in your body.[/thb_contentbox]
[thb_contentbox heading=”Replace Dry Spaghetti for Spaghetti Squash” image=”3885″]No,spaghetti squash isn’t exactly like spaghetti pasta. It’s more tender than it is chewy. It also has a lighter and cleaner flavor somewhere between butternut squash and zucchini + provides your dietary intake for vegetables and you wont realize it hen you add your favorite pesto sauce in there.
Savings per cup compared to whole wheat pasta: 132 calories, 27 grams of carbs[/thb_contentbox]
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[thb_contentbox heading=”Flour” image=”3881″]Carbohydrates are an important part of the diet, but your main source of carbs should be coming from vegetables rather than refined grains. Refined grains and their food products are substandard foods for several reasons. They are excessively starchy and high in gluten. They are practically devoided of natural fiber.There can be up to approximately 25 different chemicals that are added to refined grains and bread products.
Grains are fumigated.Bleaching chemicals are used. Artificial coloring’s and flavorings are used.
They are nutritionally imbalanced.white flour which is the result of modern refining process is 72% extraction. This means that it has lost 28% of the bulk of the wheat, including half or more of many of the crucial nutrients. So for optimum health, eliminate all refined flour products from your diet and use only whole grains when necessary.[/thb_contentbox]
[thb_contentbox heading=”Replace Refined Flour For Coconut Flour ” image=”3882″] I know flour is commonly used for baking, and that doesnt mean you should eliminate the task. Just replace flour with flours such as almond, coconut or Quinoa flour. I personally like Coconut flour. I like the nutty flavor and it is very high in fiber, so is great for stabilizing blood glucose levels and lowering total cholesterol. In addition to this, you’ll also take in a small dose of healthy fats with the coconut flour, which will help to nicely balance out the nutrition in any baking recipe you use it with. It’s also a gluten free option, so great for those who can’t consume wheat-based foods.[/thb_contentbox]

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