Holiday Guide for for Healthy Eating
Do the appetizers get you?
I know it's always hard to wait until the meal, especially when the appetizers are all calling your name! But how about those nuts, party nuts that is! Nuts such as almonds, walnuts, pistachios, pecans and cashews provide a great source of unsaturated fat, and fiber which have been shown to lowering cholesterol.
Many people are surprised to learn that each glass of wine or beer contributes about 150 calories but mixed drinks or punches can be even higher. There may be a few toasts throughout the meal so stick to no-calorie or low-calorie beverages to save room for all of the delicious dishes coming your way!
And for the main course:
- Turkey conversations always bring up sleepy party goers due to an amino acid called tryptophan, but in reality there is not enough of this amino acid to actually produce this side effect. So let’s keep this party going with tryptophan as it helps the digestion process of all the holiday food. Turkey also has vitamins B6, B12, choline, selenium and zinc. Also, 3oz of protein provides 26 grams of protein which will help stabilize blood sugars and keep you satiated or fuller longer.
- Cranberry sauce is a staple with your turkey, and adds an antioxidant punch to your meal. Containing vitamins C and E and prevention of urinary tract infections cranberries are an essential side dish.
- Sweet potatoes are a stable at holiday meals and are jam packed with fiber, vitamin A, vitamin C, potassium and manganese. Think about this, one medium sized sweet potato contains 214% of the DRI for Vitamin A, which plays a part in vision and cell growth in the body. The fiber content provides 4grams of fiber which promotes bowel regularity, something to be very grateful for after those holiday meals.
- Green beans add more than just a pop of color to your holiday meal, but they also provide many nutritional benefits such as vitamin K, which is essential in blood clotting. Plus they are low in calories, only 45 calories per cup!
What's for dessert?
Pumpkin pie is one of the healthiest holiday desserts and has many beneficial ingredients to conclude your holiday meal. Plus, let's be honest it's delicious! Pumpkin has an excellent source of fiber, manganese, phosphorus, copper, magnesium and zinc which have roles such as carbohydrate and fat metabolism, blood sugar control, and energy production.
Walk it off!
Let's not blame it on the tryptophan! It may be tempting to take a nap or turn on that television after the holiday meal but instead head outside for a brisk walk after dinner. It could be a great family activity and not only make you feel better after the big meal, it will also burn off some of those calories you just consumed. Just twenty minutes of brisk walking will burn off about 200 calories, and I promise you'll feel much better!
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