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10 Ways to Lighten Up Your Favorite Fatty Foods

Tricks and tips to help you eat the treats you love
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WebMD Feature

Chips, ice cream, french fries, pizza, cheeseburgers -- they’re all so tempting and, unfortunately, can be loaded with fat, sugar, and salt.  

Luckily, you can easily replace them with tasty, but healthy, alternatives.

Make these 10 smart swaps so you can enjoy some of your favorite fare, without all the fat.

1. The Fatty Food: Movie Theater Popcorn With Butter

You probably know that those pumps of liquid butter at the theater concession stand are a fat trap. But even microwave popcorn with “movie theater butter” or “Blast O Butter” is shockingly high in fat. Some varieties have 12 grams (including 3 grams of saturated fat and 4 grams of trans fat).

Lighten It Up: Try “made with real butter” microwave popcorn options with 5 grams of fat or less per serving. Or, make popcorn in an air popper and drizzle it with one tablespoon of melted whipped butter per serving. This adds only 7 grams of fat (5 grams of saturated fat).

Another option: Try 100-calorie packs of kettle corn for a touch of sweetness.

2. The Fatty Food: Potato Chips

The beloved combination of fried potatoes and salt comes at a nutritional cost of 10 grams of fat per ounce.

Lighten It Up: Nowadays almost every brand of potato chips has a baked option, which usually clocks in with 3 grams of fat per ounce. If that doesn’t satisfy your chip craving, sample some of the light chip options, with 4 grams of fat or less per ounce.

3. The Fatty Food: Pork Sausage Links

Before you serve up some pigs in a blanket, you should know that three links of regular pork sausage have about 24 grams of fat (8 grams of saturated fat).

Lighten It Up: Choose turkey sausage for a savory alternative. It typically has the same herbs and spices as pork sausage, and three links have only about 7 grams of fat (2 grams of saturated fat).

4. The Fatty Food: Cheese and Crackers

This seems like an easy on-the-go snack, but it comes with a high nutritional price. Sharp cheddar cheese has 10 grams of fat (6 grams of saturated fat) and 120 calories per ounce, while a serving of wheat crackers has 7 grams of fat and 160 calories.

Lighten It Up: Buy a reduced-fat sharp cheddar cheese that has only about 6 grams of fat (3.5 grams of saturated fat) and 90 calories per ounce. Pair it with low-fat crackers that have whole wheat as the first ingredient -- these typically have 3 grams or less of fat per ounce.

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