7 Low Calorie Substitutions to Accelerate Your Fat Loss

Updated: Jun 30

As your likely aware, fat loss is a simple matter of Calories In vs. Calories Out.

In other words... you need to eat fewer calories than you use in a day. That way your body will use its stored energy (body fat) to fuel your daily activities.

We call this a Calorie Deficit. A term you've likely heard thrown around but perhaps not known how to achieve it.

Well, sometimes it's enough just to reduce your inputs with these substitutions (we can talk about your outputs in a later post!)

Over my years as a Personal Trainer, I've found that many clients can create a Calorie Deficit and accelerate their results by making some very simple food substitutions.

We simply exchange their calorie dense foods, for ones with fewer calories, and you'll barely notice the difference!

For help with your nutrition, I now have a tried and tested Meal Plan available


1. Courgetti vs. Spaghetti

This is a really simple, like for like substitution that you can make to your dinners. As we know, pasta is calorie dense and NOBODY ever cooks the right amount.

I understand that courgetti is not quite as tasty as pasta... however, there are plenty of ways to spice it up and with around 8x fewer calories, I think it is worth the effort!

If the transition is too steep for you, why not try using 50/50. Half spaghetti and half courgetti. That will still work out as a huge reduction in your total calories.

2. Diet Coke vs. Regular Coke

This is an absolute no brainer in my opinion! Swapping a calorie dense Coke for a very similar drink with literally 0 calories (obviously this applies to the diet version of any soft drink)

There is a lot of talk about the impact that the sweeteners have on your body. Though I can tell you now, that they are considerably better than the amount of sugar in a regular Coke.

It may be advisable to avoid soft drinks altogether, but if you have a sweet tooth (like me), then it's an excellent way to satisfy that craving without consuming a ton of calories.

3. Popcorn vs. Regular Crisps

Now I know that this world is filled with crisp addicts, and I don't blame them. Once you pop you can't stop, I get it. The problem is that crisps are super calorie dense with very little beneficial nutritional value. So why not swap it out for a low calorie popcorn (equally good!)

This is one of my favourite substitutions, but it does come with a bit of a caveat because not all popcorn is low calorie. In fact, the kind that is drenched in butter can actually be really calorie dense. So just make sure you read the label.

4. Cauliflower Rice vs. Ordinary Rice

A very similar story to the Courgetti, cauliflower rice is substantially lower in calories. Once you cover it in curry or whatever you're cooking, I promise you'll barely notice the difference.

I'm not much of a rice eater, but if you are someone who regularly eats it, then consider exchanging it for cauliflower rice to substantially lower your calorie intake.

Think of it this way... if you save 200kcals eating cauliflower rice, that's about 20 mins less required on the treadmill (a fair trade if you ask me!)

5. Fish & Lean Meats vs. Red & Fatty Meats

As much as pork and steak can be delicious, consider exchanging for chicken breast or tuna occasionally to effortlessly reduce your calorie intake.

Nothing ground-breaking here, you likely already know the score. Aim for good cuts of lean meats and you'll be able to reduce your daily calorie intake with minimal effort!

It doesn't mean you have to cut out steak or bacon entirely, but just change it up a couple of times and you'll notice a difference.

6. 1 Cal Spray vs. Olive Oil

Another absolute no brainer! Swap the 100-200 calories you'd use on oil, for the 1-10 you might use with the spray. That's another 20 minutes saved on the treadmill and you'll barely notice the difference.

At this point I'm surprised any one cooks with oil anymore.

Some people will talk to you about "healthy fats" and the benefits of them. But with the amount of smashed avo I see Aussies eat - I think they'll survive.

7. Black Coffee vs. Milky Coffee

Ok, it's time to put down your frappuccino or your oat milk flat white. Even a skinny capp is more calories than you need to consume on your coffee. Once you go black you never go back, and they both will make you bounce off the walls.

If you absolutely love your milky coffees and it's the one piece of happiness in an otherwise gloomy day - then I'm not suggesting you remove it.

However, if you're just drinking it as a little pick me up in the morning, then consider making the switch.

Both oat milk and almond milk still have quite a few calories in, so although slightly lower than regular milk, it's still not ideal.

For help with your nutrition, I now have a tried and tested Meal Plan available

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