Cold weather and holiday cheer remind us of the heart-warming comfort that indulgent food can bring. However, increased stress and tasty seasonal temptations can entice us to eat more than we usually would.
Following these simple situational mindful eating tips can bring a new comfort… the satisfaction of sticking to your holiday weight goals. Bon appétit!
• Give your favorite holiday comfort foods a healthy twist. Add fresh fruit to desserts and pair rich dishes with fresh vegetables.
• Avoid the lure of overindulging in holiday leftovers by cooking only enough food for one meal, or re-package leftovers into single-serving portions.
• Serve your holiday dinner in the kitchen and enjoy it at the dining table. You’ll eat less if the food bowls are not in front of you.
• Be conscious of in-between meal nibbling.
At the office…
• Move the holiday candy dish at least six feet away from your desk. This creates a pause point to consider whether you’re really hungry before diving in.
• Bring your own healthy lunch and snacks. You’ll be less tempted to graze on high-calorie holiday treats in the lunchroom.
• When everyone else is indulging in holiday treats, pause and ask yourself, “Am I really hungry? Or am I just eating because everyone else is?”
• If the break room is full of tempting treats, avoid it altogether. Instead, make plans with a co worker to take a 15 minute power walk.
• Chewing gum while working at your desk may help to reduce stress-related eating.
In the car, and out and about…
• Order entrée salads or hearty soups at fast food stops along your holiday car trip.
• If you don’t have time to stop for meals while traveling, stock the car with healthy proteinrich snacks to curb hunger and avoid ravenous stops for fast food.
• Order coffee drinks with fat-free milk and skip the whipped cream; or order the small size peppermint mocha instead of the large! Beverage calories from holiday shopping outings can add up!
• At holiday potlucks and buffets, allow only a few items on your plate at a time. Research shows that buffet-style parties encourage overeating, so be aware of the tendency to nibble your way to weight gain.
• At parties, fill up on healthy foods first, such as broccoli and carrots, and see if you have room left for the rest.
• At restaurants, ask the waiter to pre-wrap half of your entrée before beginning to eat. You’ll avoid overeating and can enjoy the rest at home.
It can be hard to find ways to be healthy around the holiday season. Everywhere you turn there are cookies, drinks, and rich treats. The team at PVHS LiveWell has put together a few recipes based on some traditional high calorie holiday treats.
Enjoy! Let us know if you used the recipes and if you liked them!
Dietitian’s tip: Traditional eggnog is high in calories, fat, and added sugar. Luckily we have a great Holiday gift for you… A healthier version of this Holiday favorite with a modern twist that is just as delicious and decadent.
• 1 pear, peeled, cored, cut into chunks
• 1/2 cup skim milk
• 1/4 cup egg substitute, or 2 egg whites
• 1 tsp. brown sugar
• 1 large pinch cinnamon (about 1/4 tsp)
• 2 ice cubes, cracked
• Nutmeg (to taste)
1. Peel, core, and cut pear. Place all ingredients in a blender. Blend at high for 15 seconds.
2. Serve, and garnish with nutmeg.
Nutrition Information: Calories 200, Total Fat 2.5 g, Saturated fat 0 g, Cholesterol 5 mg, Sodium 160 mg, Protein 12 g, Carbohydrate 36 g, Fiber 6 g
Makes 1 serving
Nutrition Bonus: An excellent source of fiber, vitamin B2, calcium, phosphorous and selenium; and a good source of vitamins A, B1, B12, C, D, and K, iodine, iron, manganese, potassium and zinc.
Recipe adapted from http://www.fruitsandveggiesmorematters.org
Pumpkin Cranberry Bread
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour (plus 2 tbsp extra for hi-altitude)
1 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 teaspoon ground ginger
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
1 cup granulated sugar
1 cup canned pumpkin
1/2 cup low-fat buttermilk
1/4 cup packed light brown sugar
2 tablespoons canola oil
1 large egg
2/3 cup sweetened dried cranberries, chopped
Cooking spray or light oil for pan
• Preheat oven to 375°.
• Lightly spoon flour into dry measuring cups; level with a knife. Combine flour, baking soda, and next 5 ingredients (though cloves); stir well with a whisk.
• Combine granulated sugar and next 5 ingredients (through egg) in a large bowl; beat with a mixer at medium speed until well blended (about 3 minutes). Add flour mixture to sugar mixture; beat at low speed just until combined. Fold in cranberries.
• Spoon batter into 9×5 loaf pan. Bake at 375° for ~40 minutes or until it springs back when touched lightly in center.
Yield: 1 loaf (serving size: 1 slice – 1/12 of a loaf)
Calories: 199 (14% from fat); Fat 3.2g (sat 0.4g,mono 1.6g,poly 0.9g); Carbohydrate 41g; Sodium195mg; Protein: 3 g; Fiber: 2 g
Recipe adapted from Cooking Light