Get a food craving makeover
We all have them - food cravings. It may be chocolate or pizza, pasta or doughnuts. There is always at least one food that we just can't seem to walk past without stopping to sneak a bite. What's worse, it's typically a food that isn't good for us.
My food craving is the best selling cookie in America, the Oreo cookie. More than 491 billion Oreo cookies have been sold since they were first introduced in 1912. To make them irresistible, over the years Nabisco has produced many different types of Oreo cookies, including Mini Oreos, Double Stuf Oreos, and holiday-themed Oreos for Halloween and Christmas.
They've even caused great disputes as to the best way to eat them, dunking them in milk or twisting off one side and eating the middle first.
Of course, there's nothing wrong with eating two or three Oreo cookies on occasion or a pizza during the big game. But before we start digging in and blow all of our calories on a binge, we can learn to satisfy some of our cravings with healthy substitutions.
Check out these food craving makeovers and experiment with your own by eating a similar food that has a better nutritional value than the one you crave.
Craving: Apple pie, 295 calories and 14 grams of fat.
Substitution: Cinnamon Apple Delight, 115 calories, less than 1 g fat.
Savings: 180 calories and 13 grams of fat.
Core a cooking apple, and peel one third of the way. Sprinkle the top with cinnamon, nutmeg and 1 teaspoon of brown sugar. Cook in the microwave, covered, on medium-high (70 percent power) for 2 to 3 minutes, or until tender.
Craving: Fast-food French fries, 450 calories, 22 grams fat per 5 ounces (large order).
Substitution: Oven-baked fries, 145 calories, 5 grams fat.
Savings: 305 calories, 17 grams fat.
Preheat oven to 425 degrees F. Toss one unpeeled baking potato, cut into wedges, with 1 teaspoon olive oil. Arrange in single layer in shallow pan. Bake 25 minutes, turning once, until potatoes are golden.
Craving: Jelly-filled doughnut, 290 calories, 16 grams fat.
Substitution: Jelly-Jammed Ladyfinger, 55 calories, less than 1 gram fat
Savings: 235 calories, 15 grams fat.
Spread 2 teaspoons raspberry jam on a split ladyfinger (sponge cake).
Craving: Milk shake (prepared with gourmet ice cream), 420 calories, 26 grams fat.
Substitution: Fruit smoothie, 165 calories, 1 gram fat.
Savings: 255 calories, 25 grams fat.
Blend 1 cup fat-free milk; half a banana, sliced; six strawberries; and four ice cubes.
The trick is not to beat the craving, but to go with it in a more healthy way. I don't think there is anything I could make at home that would come close to the deliciousness of an Oreo. But watching portion size and swapping some 'junk food' cravings with healthy choices will allow a little taste without going overboard.