Low Calorie Alternatives to Silence Your Sweet Tooth

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Too often, our minds can get caught in an all-or-nothing approach to eating healthy. Just as often, many dieters simply give up under the pressure of changing so many of their habits all at once. The good news is that there are many ways to achieve a healthier lifestyle that won’t force you to turn your world upside down overnight. In fact, by structuring your nutrition plan around the addition of low calorie alternatives into your diet, you can steadily achieve your goals without feeling like you’re in a constant battle of wills with your appetite. The Beauty Detox Diet and Glowing Lean System both take a gradual approach that will help you ease into your new way of eating without the mental and physical discomfort that can accompany the adoption of a healthier lifestyle.

While we’ve often talked about this gradual, flexible approach to healthy living, many people continue to believe that dessert is forbidden for any diet or healthy lifestyle. This couldn’t be further from the truth! If you’re trying to lose weight or otherwise improve your health, that doesn’t mean you need to swear off dessert completely. We want you to live your life and enjoy yourself! You can have your cake and eat it too (literally), so long as you substitute some of your ingredients for healthier, low calorie alternatives.

When it comes to dessert, a lot of people mistakenly think that fruit’s the only acceptable option, but that misconception is so far from the truth. The fruit will sit on top of the meal you just ate and ferment, causing discomfort and bloating. Fruit should always be eaten alone or with greens for optimal digestion and the absorption of those valuable nutrients. Low calorie desserts are baby steps to a healthy lifestyle. Eating healthy shouldn’t be something you dread; you should enjoy it! What I recommend when dessert is calling your name is a couple of squares of organic dark chocolate. Stash some in your purse if you’re going out to dinner and you know everyone else at the table will be asking for the cheesecake or brownie. You won’t feel left out, but you’ll feel so much better after dinner than you would if you’d caved and had that dessert from the menu.

Sometimes you want a dessert at home, and that, too, can be a challenge, especially if you’re making something for the whole family or guests. Giving everyone a couple of squares of chocolate might not be your style when entertaining. That’s okay—you can still stick to the Beauty Detox principles and whip up something delicious and healthy for dessert!

Instead of giving you entirely new recipe ideas, let’s focus on some ways that you can make your current desserts just a little bit healthier – and just as delicious – by using healthier substitute ingredients.


Sugar –

A lot of the empty, pound-packing calories in desserts come from their high levels of sugar. One very simple way to cut down on sugar without sacrificing taste is to replace it with either nutmeg or cinnamon.

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You’ll still get a sweet taste, but both of these spices contain fewer calories. They also don’t have the rush-and-crash effect or the addictiveness that make sugar such a stubborn obstacle to healthy living. In some recipes, you may be able to get that sweetness from maple syrup, raw honey, coconut nectar, or dates.

Butter –

Butter is another ingredient that jacks up the caloric content of many desserts and causes clogging in the body. Thankfully, there are a lot of great substitutes that you can use. If you’re making baked treats, you can substitute applesauce or coconut oil for the butter that the recipe requires. This will greatly reduce the saturated fat in desserts such as brownies and cakes. If you’re using coconut oil, remember that this is still a fat and should only be enjoyed in moderation (so don’t eat half a pan of brownies because they’re “healthy”)!

Buttermilk –

Buttermilk is a common ingredient in many breads, muffins, and biscuits, and it’s also high in fat and overall calories. Plus, again, since it’s dairy it’s clogging to the body and should never be consumed. You can sidestep this source of fatty dairy by replacing it with 1 cup of non-dairy (like coconut!) milk mixed with 1 tablespoon of vinegar or lemon juice for each cup of milk.

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White Flour –

Flour is the essential building block of many baked desserts, as well as other foods. It’s also a refined starch, which means it can spike your blood sugar, interfere with your metabolism, and play a role in the development of inflammatory diseases like heart disease and arthritis. A lot of people think whole wheat flour is a promising substitute, but wheat is a highly allergenic crop and we want to avoid gluten.

There are several gluten-free flour alternatives that contain fiber that’s easier for your body to digest. For example, there’s Bob’s Red Mill Gluten-Free Flour and a list of gluten-free options at the Celiac Support Association. You can also use coconut or almond flour, though those behave differently in baking than your traditional white and wheat flours so you’ll want to do a test run or two before creating a dessert for guests. In some cases, you may find that you need more or less moisture in a recipe than normal.

Small Substitutions Lead to Big Results

If done regularly, these small substitutions can go a long way in helping you stay on track towards achieving your healthy goals, detoxing your body, and feeling more alive, energetic, and beautiful. Remember, the goal is not to wake up one morning stoically committed to every possible healthy life choice. As ideal as that would be, it’s a tall order because we all have habits that have been staples of our lives for months or even years. Taking on so much personal change at once can be overwhelming and self-defeating. The real key to success is not to magically transform your life overnight, but rather to evolve over time to a healthier, happier version of yourself.

Recipes to Get You Started

If you’re looking for healthy dessert recipes to get started and don’t have time to tweak your regular go-tos to make them Beauty Detox-friendly, here are a few of my favorites:




Last updated: Friday, June 19, 2015
  • Stephanie

    Grass-fed, organic, raw milk butter can be extremely healthy due to its content of CLA, fat-soluble vitamin K2… not all saturated fats are unhealthy. High quality saturated fats are utilized by the brain and all cells of the body. It is conventional, refined, industrial oils that are the unhealthy fats. Many organizations like the Weston A Price foundation are promoting these saturated fats (raw butter, coconut oil, wild-caught salmon, etc). Do you not agree with this? Or is the butter you are referring to conventional pasturized butter? I do love coconut oil and using it in recipes, but I also strongly believe that high-quality butter should have a place in our diets if dairy is tolerated by an individual.

  • Harris

    I have been a fan of Kimberly Snyder and her work for a few years now. I get the emails, have the books, so why I am asked, after clicking a link IN MY EMAIL for my email address in order to read her articles? I often don’t bother at that point, annoyed with all the marketing. This really needs to change on the site. I will likely unsubscribe and stop trying to access the site if this continues.

    • Mia

      You can just click “No Thanks” in the box that asks you to subscribe and it allows you to read all her articles anyway, that’s what I do. Hope this helps!

  • Ibrahim Moss

    Thank Kim. You are fabulous.

  • veenu malik

    I want to know beauty secret

  • Anonymous

    I thought one of the things with Beauty Detox was that there is no need to count calories. Shouldn’t we be focusing on eating healthy options the Beauty Detox way rather than “low calorie” options?

  • http://kimberlysnyder.com Rhonda

    Hi Kimberly…..I have to comment to you because I want to eat like you, but I am apprently very unique. I was on the JJ Virgin diet and lost seven pounds, but the foods she uses triggered my ibs so much that I didn’t even put it together that I had changed my diet and my symptoms kept getting worse and worse until I was beside myself. Have you heard of the fodmap diet for ibs triggers? Most of JJ virgin and you have so many of the foods that are not allowed for ibs sufferers. I had some symptoms but I was unable to function at my job, church, anything I literally didn’t go anywhere because I had so many symptoms. It was horriable. When I saw most everything on the fodmap diet was what I was eating (coconut milk, coconut oil, almond milk, cashews, kale, green peppers, lentils, xylitol, pea protien, peas, etc.) you got the picture. What I am wanting to know is JJ Virgin says her diet helps ibs, which it made my worse. I have put 5 pounds on since not eating on her diet. I am beside myself of how to eat anymore without gaining weight. I don’t think people she put weight on that easy I think something is out of whack but I looking at how you eat, JJ Virgin, and Yuri it doesn’t seem like I have a chance with all the limitations of (good food, which is very filling)the fodmap. What is your take on ibs and fodmap? Do you have any insight for my situation?