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Pantry Raid: 11 Healthy Food Swaps

Can't remember the last time you cleaned out your cupboards? It's time to start fresh. Here, 11 simple food swaps that will spice up your meals and cut calories and fat.
pantry items Better Broth & Noodles

Stock up on: Low-sodium chicken or vegetable broth
Toss: High-sodium broth

Cooking side dishes with broth is a great way to amp up the flavor without adding a lot of fat or calories. But one cup of the regular stuff contains up to 40 percent of your recommended daily sodium intake. Choose broths that are lower in sodium -- 450 milligrams per serving or less -- and use them in mashed potatoes instead of butter or half-and-half; you'll save about 230 calories and 24 grams of fat per batch, says Jessica Fishman Levinson, RD, a nutritionist in New York City. Or swap butter or olive oil for broth in rice recipes and cut up to 36 calories and 5 to 6 grams of fat per serving. Broth also adds zing to steamed veggies. Just sub it for water and cook as usual.

Stock up on: Buckwheat noodles
Toss: Refined pasta

Trading up from white pasta to whole wheat is good, but choosing soba, made with buckwheat, is even better. These noodles are high in fiber (3 grams per 2 ounces), and they're an excellent source of plant protein (about 8 grams per cup cooked). "Buckwheat noodles are so filling and satisfying, you're less likely to eat oversize portions," says Tanya Zuckerbrot, RD, author of The F-Factor Diet. They're also loaded with magnesium; choline, a mineral that helps keep your brain healthy; and antioxidants, including rutin, which may lower blood pressure.