The Best Food Hacks from our Nutritionist Dominique Longpré

Sports nutrition
Healthy eating
Women's health
Plant-based diets
salad bowl with cutlery

We all have our own little things that make our lives easier. So here are my nutrient tips to help you eat better!

Dominique's 5 food hacks

1. The trick of cutting your fresh vegetables to have raw vegetables on hand at all times? It's not that one! Even easier: grab-and-go vegetables

Take a smart shortcut and save yourself a few stab wounds by buying vegetables that don't need preparation. Some examples here: - Mini cucumber. They're so cute.... - Carrots from Nantes. The skin is so thin that you can't feel it. Moreover, its flavour is so sweet that it is really pleasant to eat it as it is!

- Mini peppers. Full of colours, little effort!

- Mushrooms. Keep the smallest to eat raw, the largest to cut and integrate into your recipes.

- Snow peas. Simply leave the side with the small rod aside.

- Grape tomatoes, cherry tomatoes and company

No cutting board to take out, just grab and go. However, I recommend that you spend them underwater for a few seconds. And if you're in too much of a hurry in the morning, believe me, it's great even right at work! To be eaten as is or with a small dip.

2. Prepare a homemade pre-workout in 30 seconds

The pre-workout formula is popular with athletes. It helps to reduce the perception of fatigue during training and provides fuel to start physical activation properly. Let us analyse its composition in order to understand how it works.

- Caffeine. In all its forms (coffee, tea extract, maté, guarana, etc.)

- Sugar. In its simplest form (mono or di-saccharide), it is the preferred fuel for muscles to exercise!

- A whole range of other strange compounds whose function is not always known.

Save yourself from the detailed analysis of these compounds (some of which may be questioned for their relevance) and return to the basics. The following recipe allows you to save a lot of money (we're still talking about products starting at $50 per jar) while having full control over the ingredients.

My homemade pre-workout recipe in 30 seconds

Drink within 30 minutes before exercise :

- 500 ml chocolate or vanilla almond milk

- 1 to 3 tablespoons instant coffee diluted in a little hot water

- Ice cubes, to taste

* It is important to choose a sweetened milk for the drink to be effective. The 30 grams of carbohydrates provided will be used as direct fuel for the heart and muscles in action. Otherwise, an alternative would be to take a regular milk and add chocolate or maple syrup. The idea of almond milk is interesting because it is very low in protein. Within 30 minutes before a workout, we want digestion to be as easy as possible and the presence of protein would have the opposite result. That said, I've already tried it with half milk, half water and it went very well. To be tested on your side!

Instant coffee is an excellent option to add caffeine to the homemade pre-workout mix in one simple ingredient: coffee! It is the physical process of freeze-drying that gives it this strange aspect and makes it so easily soluble. It's the same thing we do to produce the dehydrated mushrooms or dried strawberries that are found in breakfast cereals. The amount of coffee to put in your drink depends on your weight and your caffeine addiction. In general, we are looking for a ratio of 3 to 5 mg of caffeine per kg of body weight, without exceeding 450 mg daily.

3. Prepare this wonderful hazelnut spread so you never have to buy Nutella again!

Nutella is a nutritional horror. Excessively sweet, we understand it because its first ingredient is sugar. Its second is palm oil. The cultivation of its tree is responsible for major deforestation and threatens the existence of several species, one of the major issues defended by GreenePeace). Finally, there is only 13% hazelnut in this famous hazelnut butter so much loved...

Would you eat a chocolate bar for lunch and think you've made a healthy choice?

Nutella ® For 2 tablespoons (38 g)

- 200 Calories

- 22 g carbohydrates of which 22 g sugar

- 12 g fat 2 g saturated fat

- 2 g protein

Aero Chocolate Bar For 1 bar (42 g)

- 220 Calories

- 26 g carbohydrates including

- 25 g of sugar 12 g fat of which including

- 7 g of saturated fat

- 3 g protein

*Sources :

It's mostly the taste that brings back good memories, isn't it? So, when I feel like it, I add a few ingredients to my grocery basket and prepare this easy chocolate and hazelnut spread. I eat it without guilt, because it is a thousand times more natural, half as low in calories and with half the fat and sugar required for the original recipe!

4. Creating a winning environment

Leave a tray of raw vegetables on the table during afternoons spent at home on weekends, where the structure of weekdays is often overlooked. The same goes for returning from school and work, when appetites awaken. All the little bellies on the legs of the household will fall into the trap! We use the rule of ease to our advantage.

5. Check your ice cream cravings with yogurt tubes

Freeze these yogurt tubes and take one when the urge for ice cream is overwhelming. The pre-established format will help you not to overdo it in the portion and the way you eat it encourages us to take more time. Thus, even a single 60 g tube is satisfactory while the same amount of ice cream would be completely absurd (and 3 times more calories.)

Registered Dietitian Nutritionist