Hey Angels and Alphas,
Millions of people around the world, not just in the nutrition world but as a whole, are big fans of bread. It’s still the recipient of a tarnished, undeserved reputation thanks to diet culture. But in reality, bread contains nutrients that are essential to keeping our bodies energized and healthy. It’s that simple.
You wouldn’t normally encourage people to replace bread with alternative options unless it’s necessary for their health. But that said, there are food that may be of better use to you if you’re looking to mix up your diet and plan your macros better, both of which absolutely have great health benefits.
Let’s compare the alternatives to this pantry staple and see which one will help you best serve your health and fitness goals.
#1 CORN TORTILLAS
They’re flavorful, versatile, and they can make an amazing bread substitute for egg, veggie wraps, mashed avocado, or even tuna and turkey. They’re gluten-free (unless otherwise noted on the label or the ingredients list) and they’re a nice option for people with gluten sensitivities.
Depending on which brand you’re using or how you’re making them, they can be a great source of fiber with 3-4 grams in every large tortilla. They also contain about 3 grams of protein in the same amount. They will also provide you with magnesium, even a small amount of plant-based iron. When it comes to the alternatives, corn tortillas are one of the good ones.
#2 COLLARD GREENS
The reason why collard greens are in a comparison like this is that even though collard greens are not bread, and even though you’re not going to be using them instead of bread in a low-carb diet, to say that they lack nutrients would be misleading.
Collard greens are packed with nutrients – vitamin C, plant-based iron, magnesium, calcium, and blood sugar-stabilizing fiber. The fact that they lack carbohydrates means that using collard greens instead of a carb like bread might leave you feeling unsatisfied after meals or even lead to cravings later in the day.
#3 RICE CAKES
When you hear rice cake, do you immediately think of that tasteless diet food at your local grocery store? It’s no wonder. But rice cakes are so much more than that. They’re a great substitute for bread for people with Celiac disease or people who want that little extra crunch in their meal or snack. Unlike other options here, they’re pretty devoid of most nutrients and they aren’t a great source of fiber, protein, vitamins, or minerals. They can, however, be a pretty great vehicle for the foods that *are* rich in those nutrients – such as avocado and tomato, tuna salad, cucumber and hummus, or even banana slices and nut butter.
#4 SWEET POTATO “TOAST”
Sweet potato “toast” has pretty much become a very popular dish by itself, and its recipes contain a variety of inventive, delicious toast toppings that are flooding the internet in recent years.
These toasts may require a bit more work than just throwing out a few slices of bread into your toaster, and they can be a great alternative to regular toast for people who have gluten sensitivities or people who want something a little more hearty. Because they’re usually sturdier than your typical slice of bread, sweet potatoes can hold more delicious toppings.
You can try yogurt or ricotta with honey and fruits, or even a protein-packed chicken salad alongside your sweet potato toast. Nutrition-wise, they’re an amazing source of vitamin C, vitamin A, fiber, potassium, and complex carbs. When it comes to alternatives to bread, they’re one of the winners.
THE BOTTOM LINE IS…
There are countless alternatives to bread at your local grocery store, but a lot of them are there simply because of a diet culture that constantly vilifies carbohydrates. But if you’re choosing an alternative to bread or you’re following a more restrictive diet, it’s probably not a good choice for you or your relationship with food to restrict carbs.