Why quit your vices? Make these 4 easy substitutions instead

Cigarette smoke smoking

If there’s a particular vice in your life that you’d rather be without, you know that the word “quit” can sometimes feel like a huge – almost impossible – thing. That’s especially true if the vice in question happens to be something addictive like smoking, which has been giving people fits for thousands of years.

Here’s the good news. Today, we have technology on our side – and one of the best ways for a company to make a lot of money is by developing a healthier replacement for an unhealthy activity. Whether the vice in your life is smoking, alcohol or unhealthy foods – or perhaps all three of those – there’s probably an alternative available that’s just as enjoyable and much better for you.

Do you have a vice that you’d like to quit? The easiest way to quit an unhealthy vice is by substituting it with something else – so stop thinking in terms of quitting. Instead, think in terms of switching from an unhealthy activity to one that’s not so unhealthy. Try these substitutions for your favourite vices.

Use Disposable Vapes Instead of Smoking

You could ask just about any person who smokes if they’d like to quit, and it’s likely that they’d say “yes.” Cigarettes are the only legal products in the world that kill the majority of their users, but nothing – not even Australia’s incredibly high tobacco taxes – seems to be sufficient to rid the world of tobacco completely. That’s why the invention of vaping has been such an incredible thing for the smokers of the world. Many smokers who want to quit have tried traditional nicotine replacement products, and those products have not worked for them because they’re not satisfying enough. Vaping, on the other hand, is just as satisfying as smoking because the nicotine is delivered through the lungs.

Disposable vapes are the most convenient vaping devices on the market, and that’s because they don’t require charging or filling – they’re ready to use immediately, so all that you need to do is remove the device from the package and start puffing on it. Buying disposable vapes in Australia isn’t easy if you want to get a device with nicotine. Australia’s vaping laws require you to first get a prescription for nicotine and then import the devices from an overseas seller. Anything that can help you quit smoking, though, is definitely worth the effort in our book.

Drink Hard Seltzer Instead of Beer

Alcohol may not be unhealthy in quite the same way that smoking is, but some ways of

consuming it are definitely healthier than others. You can drink wine and enjoy the antioxidant properties of grapes, for instance. Alternatively, you can be like most of us and drink beer – which is basically just white bread in a can. A typical 12-ounce can of beer has around 150 calories and 10 grams of carbohydrates. That’s not exactly health food – and if you enjoy taking a six-pack home from work every Friday night, you’re definitely not doing your waistline any favours. There’s a reason why the term “beer belly” exists, after all.

Do you enjoy a bit of fizz with your adult beverages? So does everybody else, and that’s one reason why hard seltzer has been so popular over the past few years. Hard seltzer usually consists of alcohol, soda water and fruit flavourings, although some companies go a little further by adding actual fruit juice to the mix. On average, hard seltzer typically contains around 100 calories and 2 grams of carbohydrates per can. Aside from drinking plain spirits, hard seltzer is one of the lowest-calorie ways to consume alcohol. It’ll also give you the fizz of beer without the carbohydrates that expand your belly.

Eat Polenta Fries Instead of Chips

Speaking of foods that add enormous amounts of calories and carbohydrates to your diet without contributing much in the way of fibre or nutrients, potatoes just about top the list. A burger or a plate of fried fish just wouldn’t be the same without a side of chips. Here’s the problem, though – potatoes are basically just comfort food. They’re tasty and filling, but they’re not exactly nutritional powerhouses. A 100-gram serving of chips has close to 200 calories, 18.5 grams of carbohydrates and 1.6 grams of fibre, and let’s be honest – no one eats 100 grams of chips in one sitting.

When you need something deep-fried and starchy to accompany your next meal, try polenta fries instead. A 100-gram serving of polenta fries has around 150 calories – and although polenta is just as carbohydrate-laden as potato, it has about double the fibre. Because polenta’s fibre content is higher, you may not need to eat as much of it in order to feel full.

Polenta fries are extremely easy to make – easier, in fact, than making chips from raw potatoes. All that you need to do is bring salted water to a boil – some people like to add milk and broth – and whisk in the polenta. Keep stirring until the polenta pulls away from the pan and pour it into a baking sheet topped with parchment paper. Put the polenta into the refrigerator until it’s completely cold. Cut it into sticks and fry the sticks until they’re crispy.

Eat Dark Chocolate Instead of Candy

If you’re not a fan of fatty foods, it’s possible that your favourite edible vice is candy. Candy, unfortunately, is perhaps the least healthy food of them all. It’s full of calories and contributes

absolutely nothing in terms of nutrition. To make matters even worse, overconsumption of candy and other sugary foods can contribute to the development of diabetes. That’s a serious lose-lose scenario.

Instead of eating candy as a sweet snack, try switching to dark chocolate. Although chocolate isn’t a low-calorie food, dark chocolate has significantly less sugar than candy. Chocolate also has some potential health benefits stemming from its phytochemical and antioxidant content.

In particular, chocolate is a source of anandamide – also known as the “bliss molecule.” Anandamide is a cannabinoid that reduces anxiety and pain, and it’s very likely the reason why people who like chocolate tend to really like it. Maybe you’ll feel the same way if you switch from candy to dark chocolate – and your body will certainly appreciate the reduced sugar intake.