10 Simple Switches for Better Health

By: Wendy Wu MS, RD

Choose Olive oil or Canola oil over Butter, Margarine, Corn Oil, Vegetable Oil etc. Use sparingly because 1 Tablespoon has ~135 kcal (depending on the brand).

canola olive oil happy dietitian
Oils are high in calories so you have to be stingy.

When baking, try to replace white flour with 100% whole wheat flour. Usually, you will need to sift the flour at least three times for perfect substitution. The end product may be a bit denser but that’s a good thing!

whole wheat flour
Stay fuller, longer and keep insulin stable with Whole Wheat Flour

Brown Rice, Brown Rice, Brown Rice…or even mixed bean rice! White rice is old news.

brown rice, healthy

I’ve made plenty of meals without salt. Choose fresh herbs, spices, garlic, ginger, onions, shallots, citrus juices, wine, and flavored vinegars.

salt substitute



Replace heavy creamy dressings with vinaigrette, citrus dressing, olive oil+red vinegar, and salad spritzers.

low fat salad dressing


Substitute oils in baking recipes with yogurt, unsweetened applesauce, mango puree, pear puree, or banana puree. Applesauce is the best!

fruit puree

A salad doesn’t need to be topped with luncheon meat. Add eggs, avocado, chickpeas, edamame, mushrooms, grilled eggplants/zucchini, mozzarella balls, shrimp, fish or chicken breast.

healthy salad

Instead of stir frying which requires cooking oil, try to steam and bake your meals.  You don’t need any fancy gadgets or a bamboo to steam. Just use a small bowl.

steam food
A bowl placed in a big pot will do the trick. Put your plated dish on top and cover.

Instead of creamy soups, substitute with tomato based or clear broths.


Last but not least, Whole Wheat Pastas. It’s such a simple switch. Just make sure the ingredient list “durum whole wheat flour”.

whole wheat pasta
Available at waldbaums

Good Luck on trying out these substitutes! I know they’re not the same, but they’ll be much better for you in the long run.

Related Posts:

7 Ways to Eat Out and Eat Smart

eating out

7 Healthy Drinks

10 Healthy Meals with Recipes

healthy meal happy dietitian

10 Great Snacks

snack happy dietitian

10 Appetizers

appetizer happy dietitian

8 Delicious Fresh Fruit Juices

fruit juice happy dietitian


10 thoughts on “10 Simple Switches for Better Health

  1. Reblogged this on Au Naturel Essence and commented:
    These are 10 easy changes anyone could make today to improve their diet. I try to follow these suggestions when I can. Instead of Canola Oil, I use Coconut Oil and instead of whole wheat pasta, I use brown rice pasta. Every little bit helps!

    1. Thanks for the suggestions! I’m a big fan of furikake (no msg/no salt) so I’ll give kelp seasoning a try. I wonder if they carry that here in HK. Can’t really recommend coconut oil just yet because studies are still being conducted about the benefits of medium chain triglycerides. I’m sure it’s 100% better than butter though! We’ll wait and see.

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