Ask the Dietitian: "What are easy, healthier swaps for some of my favorite foods?" [infographic]
You won't even notice (or taste) the difference with our alternatives.
Welcome to our series, Ask the Dietitian, where our in-house registered dietitian Kristin Neusel answers all of your burning nutrition and diet-related questions. Kristin is here to inform and empower you in all the food choices you make for yourself.
Interested in submitting a question to Kristin? Email it to her at firstname.lastname@example.org and we’ll try to answer it in an upcoming post!
As a Registered Dietitian, I’m going to let you in on a little secret: there are no good or bad foods lists! All foods can fit in your diet, in moderation. A lot of clients with whom I work think that they can’t have certain foods because they will spike their blood glucose levels too much. If you have a food that spikes your blood glucose too much, there are a few solutions:
- Add a protein or fat to your food item. This helps slow the absorption of glucose levels. For example, add a cheese stick to that apple snack, or spread some peanut butter on the crackers you’re having.
- Cut back on portions of the higher-sugar food items. For example, if you love cookies, cut back on the portions you are consuming.
- Swap it out for a lower sugar-spiking alternative. There are TONS of great products out there nowadays, which we will get into more detail below.
Eat this, not that!
Let’s take a peek at some of everyone’s favorite things that we know spike a lot of people’s sugars! I've provided some good alternatives for these items below. It’s not to say you can’t have the original item, but rather if this is a favorite and you’re looking for an alternative that has more fiber, less sugar, and may not impact your blood sugars as much, these may be good options for you. These options focus on more fiber, as well. Fiber is a carbohydrate that does not impact your blood sugar- crazy, right?! It also feeds your gut microbiome. Translation: fiber helps prevent the probiotic strains you’re taking in Pendulum Glucose Control from becoming “hangry”!
Click here to save a copy of our handy guide to reference later on.
One thing to keep in mind when trying to find a lower carbohydrate option is that the manufacturers must be adding something else to make up for the lack of carbohydrates. There are a variety of sweeteners that can be added. The items listed typically just have higher fiber or a sugar alcohol, or a new sweetener called Allulose. With sugar alcohols, some people may experience gastrointestinal sensitivities if consumed in greater quantities. Keep this in mind and talk with your healthcare provider about what may be the best sugar alternative for you. It’s important to read the labels to see what kind of sugars are included. Under the carbohydrates portion of the label, fiber, sugar, added sugars, and sugar alcohols will all be listed- making it easy to check!
There’s an alternative for just about everything nowadays. Hopefully you’ll find some easy swaps on this list, and be able to enjoy some of your favorites!