You know when you really love something, but can’t have it, you find a comparable replacement? I was talking to a friend (who also happens to be shakin’) and we got into a conversation about how easy it is to find healthy replacements for the not-so-healthy. Ok, maybe “easy” isn’t the right word. You definitely have to use your imagination at times, but options are floating around out there— you just have to pick them up and run with it! For instance, pasta isn’t allowed on the Shakedown. But spaghetti squash is! The strands are just like spaghetti noodles, with a really neutral flavor. Put some sauce on those babies! The Shakedown really forces you to get creative and adventurous in the kitchen— abandon the old faves and learn some new (very much improved) healthy ones!
Our Favorite ‘Shakedown Substitutions’
Carol: “Whoa, is it Day 11 already?! This week has flown by and I gotta say it’s been a breeze. I told you about my wedding dress fitting yesterday, and I’m happy to report that the Shakedown made it a perfect fit— with a little extra to take in, even! My favorite ‘Shakedown Substitution’ has been those mini sweet bell peppers. I love a good crunch, so chips or pretzels or something of the sort has always been my go-to snack. Those little peppers deliver the crunch-factor, for sure! Day 12, let’s see what you got…I’m ready!”
Chris: “I am happy to report that despite my worries, I had no problem avoiding unhealthy snacks last night. I actually stuck with the same routine today and had my meal for lunch, and will have my 2nd smoothie for dinner this evening. (I think that speaks to the fact that the smoothies really do keep you satisfied.) As far as ‘Shakedown Substitutions’, my favorite is definitely the fruit. Sweets is my weakness. If they’re in the house…they won’t be for long! I haven’t really had a craving for something sweet because the natural sugars in the fruit helps satisfy my sweet-tooth.”
Emily: “Today has been an odd day for me. I slept wonderfully last night but for some reason I’ve been unable to wake up today. Throughout this whole Shakedown I have noticed an increase of energy, so it’s a little off-putting that today I have been so sluggish. Hopefully it’s just a fluke and my energy will return tomorrow. As I mentioned on Day 4, one substitution I’ve used throughout the Shakedown is cold, black coffee instead of hot coffee with sugar. It’s been a really effective substitution because I can still enjoy my favorite morning beverage, without feeling guilty.”
Kelley: “My roommate brought home PIZZA last night for dinner! (The nerve!) I was more than surprised when my response was, “No thanks. I’m having a chicken salad.” I couldn’t believe how easy it was to say no! Usually I’m overwhelmed with the temptation to cheat on whatever diet I’m trying…but not this time! My favorite ‘Shakedown Substitution’? Well, I discovered it on Day 3. I made the lettuce wraps for dinner and fell in love! Using a lettuce leaf instead of a tortilla really makes “tacos” more fresh, and less heavy. I will definitely stick with the lettuce-leaf substitution, even after we’re done shakin’!”
And as for me…My favorite ‘Shakedown Substitution’ is probably using zucchini ribbons instead of pasta. I’m a pasta fan, what can I say? But sautéing some zucchini ribbons and topping with tomato sauce n grilled chicken? Um yum. (If you haven’t tried it— you gotta!) All you have to do is slice the zucchini longwise into thin strips, and saute in a bit of stock. I like to also add diced onion and minced garlic for a really nice flavor.