Fit to Ride: Four easy ways to eat better

Step away from the leftover Halloween candy corn, folks. HN hardbody Biz Stamm is here with some simple switches you can make for a healthier diet.

Photos: HN

From Biz:

Hey there, Horse Nation. As I’ve mentioned in the past, being active is something that comes very easily to me. Maintaining a healthy diet is something I struggle with on a daily basis. I have a huge appetite, and have a soft spot for salty, fatty foods (I pity the fool that gets between me and a bag of potato chips).

Now that I’ve been actively trying to improve my diet for almost a year, I’m making some serious progress, but it’s important to remember that things don’t change overnight. You don’t buy an OTTB one day and expect him to compete in a 4* the next. Well training yourself to maintain a good diet is very similar to training a horse. Slow and steady always produces the best results. So if you’re just starting on your journey to a healthier lifestyle, here are four easy ways to improve your diet.

*   Replace sour cream with Greek yogurt:  Greek yogurt is high protein, low fat, thick, creamy, and delicious! We’re big burrito eaters in our house, and after discovering the amount of calories and saturated fat I was adding to my food with just a dollop of sour cream, I decided something had to be done.  The first time I snuck Greek yogurt into the burritos, I didn’t tell my boyfriend.  He didn’t notice anything was different until after I told him.  We’ve also become fans of the honey-flavored Greek yogurt sprinkled with some granola for breakfast.

When cooking potato dishes, replace at least half the potatoes called for with sweet potatoes: Sweet potatoes are considered a “super food” by many nutritionists.  They’re full of fiber and rich in antioxidant.  I am a former sweet potato hater, but I blame that on the fact that were always presented to me covered in melted marshmallows, or in some other fashion that made them even sweeter than they already are.  I was completely shocked when I discovered how awesome they tasted when cooked in savory dishes.

Have a glass of water each time you have a cup of coffee:  During the cooler months, I’m guilty of drinking lots of hot caffeinated beverages.  They’re great for warming me up and giving me pep, but they do terrible things for my overall hydration level.  A lot of people tend to forget about proper hydration during the winter months, but I promise the biochemical processes in your body that require water do not stop when the weather cools down.  Trust me.  I’m a scientist.

Replace white bread, white pasta, and white rice with whole wheat or brown versions:  Switching to whole wheat bread and brown rice was relatively easy for me.  I actually like the flavor and texture of these healthy alternatives better than their over processed cousins.  The whole wheat pasta has taken me a little longer to get use to, but I’ve come to find that whole wheat pasta drizzled with a little olive oil, served with cherry tomatoes, basil, and a little graded parmesan makes a lovely, light dinner.

Go riding!

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