Instead of using the typical cooking oil, butter, mayonnaise, sugar and sour cream, which we all have in our kitchens, opt for the healthier alternatives. You won’t have to sacrifice taste, and your heart (and waistline!) will thank you. Now, without further ado…

1. Instead of using vegetable oil, use olive oil. 

Photo by Megan Tang

Olive oil is good for your heart and is high in monounsaturated fats. Plus, recent studies have discovered that olive oil can help reduce the risk of alzheimer’s and aid in maintaining healthy cholesterol levels.

2. Instead of using butter, use applesauce.

Photo by Megan Tang

You’re probably thinking, “WHAT?! Applesauce? That taste nothing like a good ol’ stick of butter.” And yes, you’re right; applesauce does not taste like butter. However, use it instead of butter when baking muffins, cakes, or breads and you’ll cut down on fat and calories. Once the applesauce is mixed and baked in your favorite crumbly desserts, your taste buds won’t notice.

3. Instead of using sour cream, use greek yogurt.

Photo by Megan Tang

Greek yogurt is high in protein, low in calories and low in fat (can be fat-free if you desire). Use it instead of sour cream over a baked potato, or in any baked good. What a sneaky way to throw in some protein and cut calories.

4. Instead of using mayonnaise, use cottage cheese.

Photo by Megan Tang

Cottage cheese is another high-protein food, while also being low in fat (or fat-free if you desire) and high in calcium. Use it instead of mayonnaise for skinnier chicken and tuna salads.

5. Instead of using sugar, use honey.

Honey, unlike its processed counterpart sugar, is high in health benefits. The natural sweetener is loaded with minerals such as calcium, potassium, sulphur and iron. Also, for all you athletes, honey can be absorbed quicker into your body than sugar, resulting in longer periods of sustained energy. Honey has also been show to lower muscle fatigue.

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