‘Tis the season to over-indulge, and who can blame us? Holiday fare like grandmother’s fork-print peanut butter cookies, fried latkes and sufganiyot, and creamy mashed potatoes are delicious! Thankfully, you don’t have to sacrifice your health goals when it comes to enjoying holiday foods. Here are some tips to take control of your health during the holidays.
Swap ingredients for healthier, but toothsome, treats:
- Choose Greek yogurt instead of sour cream or mayonnaise in dips and casseroles
- Top your dishes with toasted sliced almonds or chopped pistachios in lieu of fried onion rings
- Use apple sauce to replace oil, butter or margarine in baked goods
- Pick low sodium broths and salt-free seasonings for your dishes
Enhance the color, texture and nutritional quality of your delights with seasonal produce
- Brussels sprouts, sweet potatoes, yellow squash, purple carrots and green beans can make gorgeous, tasty side dishes
- Apples, pears and cranberries are naturally sweet choices that can be mixed with traditional pie and cake spices for a delicious winter dessert
Practice mindful eating habits during gatherings
- Eat a small snack before the event to avoid arriving overly hungry
- Drink water before enjoying an alcoholic beverage to limit excessive liquid calories
- Socialize away from the food to limit grazing
- Choose your favorite foods; skip dishes you don’t really care for
Want more help? Talk with a registered dietitian to individualize your eating plan this holiday season. Visit www.huntingtonhospital.org/nutritioncounseling for more information.