Expert nutritionist reveals the food swaps we should all consider to kick-start the year well


With the New Year comes a fantastic opportunity to reset your goals and focus on your health and wealth in a fresh and reinvigorating way.  

But prioritising how you look after your body doesn’t have to mean deprivation, hunger and endless workouts.

In fact, there are nine small things you can do each day that will improve your health helping you become leaner, healthier and happier as a result.

With the help of Nutritionist and Senior Director of Worldwide Nutrition Education and Training, Herbalife Nutrition Susan Bowerman, FEMAIL reveals the nine things you can do to kick-start 2021 healthily – and you won’t have to go hungry.

If you’re someone who often turns to a bowl of cereal and milk first think in the morning, you might want to re-think your breakfast in 2021 and try a protein shake (pictured) instead 

1. Swap cereal for a protein shake

If you’re someone who often turns to a bowl of cereal and milk first think in the morning, you might want to re-think your breakfast in 2021.

‘A bowl of cereal with milk is quick and easy, but you can pack a lot more nutrition into an equally easy protein shake,’ Susan told Daily Mail Australia.

The expert said there are many reasons why a protein shake is a better breakfast choice than cereal, but the main one is the ingredients.

A protein shake made with protein powder, milk or soy milk and fruit will give you more protein, which gives your meal more staying power’, she said.

‘Plus, the fruit contributes vitamins, minerals and filling fibre. Since you’ll be drinking the milk, rather than leaving it at the bottom of the cereal bowl, you’ll get a good dose of calcium, too.’

High protein breakfasts have been shown to aid weight loss, according to research published by the University of Oxford.

While we all know yoghurt is good for us, what not so many people know is that the fruit-filled variety is often stacked full of sugar; try plain and add your own fruit instead (stock image)

While we all know yoghurt is good for us, what not so many people know is that the fruit-filled variety is often stacked full of sugar; try plain and add your own fruit instead (stock image) 

2. Try plain yoghurt instead of fruit yoghurt   

While we all know yoghurt is good for us, what not so many people know is that the fruit-filled variety is often full of sugar.

Susan instead recommends that you opt for plain non-fat yoghurt and slice up your own fruit to have with it. For those with a sweet tooth, ‘You can always drizzle a little honey or maple syrup,’ she says. ‘You’ll be getting more fruit and fibre, and more protein but you’ll likely get less sugar than with the pre-sweetened varieties.’

3. Choose spinach instead of iceberg lettuce   

Susan’s third way to supercharge your health this year is easy: eat spinach instead of iceberg lettuce.

‘Leafy greens are great, but some greens like spinach are nutrition superstars,’ she says, ‘a serving of spinach has three times more potassium, calcium and vitamin C, and 50% more vitamin A than a serving of iceberg lettuce.’

Whether you steam it or eat it raw, spinach is a brilliant addition to anyone’s diet.

Susan’s third way to supercharge your health this year is easy: eat spinach instead of iceberg lettuce as it contains more vitamins (stock image)

Susan’s third way to supercharge your health this year is easy: eat spinach instead of iceberg lettuce as it contains more vitamins (stock image) 

4. Eat beans instead of rice or pasta  

If you really want to take your healthy eating to the next level, Susan explained you could consider swapping out white rice for brown, or refined pasta for whole grain. To take it a step further, try swapping out rice or pasta for beans instead.

‘Starchy sides of white rice or regular pasta don’t pack the vitamins, minerals and fibre that whole grains do, she said.

‘While brown rice or whole grain noodles would be better, a serving of beans offers up even more nutrition.’

Beans are rich in iron and protein and can be used in everything from a burrito mix to chilli con carne.

5. Ditch chips for edamame soybeans

If you’re a serial snacker, you could go a long way to improving your health by swapping your daily bag of chips for some edamame soy beans.

Susan explains, ‘A half-cup of shelled edamame soybeans contains about 9 grams of fibre, 11 grams of protein, and around 10% of your daily needs for vitamin C and iron- all for about 120 calories.’

6. Swap tinned tuna for tinned salmon  

Canned tuna is a great food, but canned salmon (which works well in most recipes calling for tuna) has a nutritional advantage since it contains more beneficial fat,’ Susan said.

The nutritionist added that, ‘Wild-caught salmon contains a higher proportion of omega-3 fatty acids compared to farmed salmon and about twice the omega-3 fatty acids as a serving of tuna  

It’s also delicious and works in salads, sandwiches and with crackers and avocado.  

7. Ditch mayonnaise for avocado

Avocado is one of the healthiest fats around, and it will keep you full and get your hair, skin and nails glowing.

Susan revealed one of her favourite ways of using it is to ‘replace the mayonnaise used in a tuna or salmon salad’ with mashed avocado.

It also works as a dip for raw vegetables or a sauce for grilled fish or chicken.

‘Avocado is a good source of monounsaturated fatty acids, similar to what’s found in other beneficial fats like olive oil and nuts,’ Susan said. 

Avocado is one of the healthiest fats around, and it will keep you full and get your hair, skin and nails glowing; it can be used instead of mayonnaise (stock image)

Avocado is one of the healthiest fats around, and it will keep you full and get your hair, skin and nails glowing; it can be used instead of mayonnaise (stock image)

8. Eat berries instead of juice  

Susan says, ‘If you’re trying to work more fruit into your diet, whole fruit is the way to go. The calories in fruit juice can add up quickly, and juice just doesn’t fill you up.’

‘Fibre is what makes whole fruit more filling compared to fruit juice, and berries are some of the highest fibre fruit around. Spend 50 calories on a serving of raspberries, and you get a whopping seven grams of fibre in return.’

Susan said if beef burgers are a menu staple, then try some vegetarian burgers with soy protein or beans instead one night (stock image)

Susan said if beef burgers are a menu staple, then try some vegetarian burgers with soy protein or beans instead one night (stock image)

9. Try a vegetarian burger instead of beef  

After all the news in 2020 about what our meat habits are doing to our waistlines and the planet, why not make 2021 the year you go more veggie?

Susan told Daily Mail Australia, ‘If beef burgers are a menu staple, try this food swap. Go for veggie burgers made with soy protein or beans instead. When they’re crumbled on top of a salad or nestled on a whole grain bun with plenty of onion, lettuce and tomato, they’re a pretty good substitute for the real thing.’

Susan went on to explain why it’s better, ‘You’re getting your protein from a plant source, which means a lot less fat and saturated fat than what you’d get from the minced beef.’

There are plenty of good vegetarian burger brands around, so shop around to find your favourite.

About Herbalife Nutrition 

Herbalife Nutrition is a global leader in meal replacements, nutritional supplements and skin care products. Every day, more than 4.8 million Herbalife Nutrition shakes are consumed around the world. 

Their global nutrition philosophy is based on balanced nutrition, leading a healthy, active life and following a personalised program with the help of an educated and trained Member. This philosophy is helping to improve the nutritional habits of the world – one person at a time

Herbalife Nutrition’s product offerings include meal replacement and protein shakes, vitamins, supplements, teas, and aloe drinks that are all scientifically designed to support each individual’s health and nutrition goals.

Source: Herbalife Nutrition   



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