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5 food swaps to help you thrive


Increasing the nourishment of your diet can be as simple as making small dietary tweaks. Here are a few ideas to incorporate into your diet and lifestyle to help you thrive, rather than just survive!

  1. Coffee for green tea: Green tea is not only a wonderful source of antioxidants it also contains the amino acid L-theanine, which has a calming effect on the nervous system. A far more nourishing way to start your day than with caffeine rich and sympathetic nervous system stimulating, coffee. Excess caffeine can decrease the absorption of minerals such as magnesium, calcium and iron.

  2. Lettuce for spinach: Lettuce is actually quite low in nutrients, due to its high water content. Generally speaking the darker the vegetable the more nutrients you will obtain. Using spinach in place of lettuce means you will obtain more folic acid and more non-haem iron – an easy and nourishing swap.

  3. Canola or vegetable oil for avocado olive oil, or coconut oil: Avocado oil is a wonderful substitute due to its heart friendly monounsatured fat content and delicious flavour.Olive oil is an essential part of the Mediterranean diet and a dietary staple for some of the world’s healthiest populations. Research suggests that the fatty acids and antioxidants in olive oil have powerful health protective benefits – it helps that it’s also delicious! Coconut oil can be a good choice for cooking as it is stable at high temperatures.

  4. Mashed potato for cauliflower mash: While there is nothing wrong with potato – we all love it at Dr Libby HQ – an easy way to add additional nourishment to your diet is to swap potato for the superstar brassica vegetable, cauliflower. Or add some cauli to your spuds! Cooked cauliflower can make a beautiful puree/mash, which can easily be used in place of or added to mashed potato. Cauliflower contains sulphoraphane, a potent antioxidant – combine it with turmeric for an extra protective and delicious effect. Cauliflower also supports your livers detox pathways in a number of ways. It contains antioxidants that support Phase 1 detoxification along with sulphur-containing nutrients that support Phase 2 detox activity.

  5. Pasta for spiralised zucchini: This easy swap is even child friendly. If you don’t have a spiraliser you can buy a peeler that has a spiraliser function, or simply julienne the zucchini. Combine with a beautiful pesto and you have a nourishing super green pasta alternative. Even though zucchini have a high water content, they are a good source of potassium and fibre and a moderate source of folate – certainly a more nutrient dense alternative to wheat-based pastas.

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