Set a Healthy Table: Top 5 Healthy Holiday Foods

The holidays have started. So have endless parties and unmindful eating and drinking. Healthy eating seems to have been forgotten in the excitement of the holidays. This is why most people feel bad after all the merry-making and some even regret the holidays. They feel that the holidays have tipped the scale.

Have you felt like you should have skimmed the fat off your thighs rather than on the Thanksgiving turkey? Or skipped that last serving of mashed potato topped with heaps of butter? But you think that it is just not fair to miss out on all these foods when it is, after all, it’s the holidays. Don’t fret anymore. Here are some holiday foods that you can prepare healthily and still enjoy.

Turkey

Turkey is a healthier protein source compared to other cuts of meat. Well, it is healthy, unless it is deep fried and slathered with fat-filled gravy. It is also a good source of folic acids, vitamin B, zinc and potassium. These nutrients are known to keep blood cholesterol level down and guard against heart disease.

Stick to white meat, skimp on the gravy and peel the skin during Thanksgiving dinner and you save hundreds of calories. For a healthy snack, slice leftover turkey and heat in the oven. Layer the slices with salad greens, tomato and onions on lightly toasted wheat bread. Skip the mayo and drizzle with a bit of mustard.

Sweet Potatoes

Skip the big mound of mashed potato this year and enjoy vitamin-rich mashed sweet potato instead. Cut them into strips, drizzle with Moroccan Argan oil, top with slivered almonds and bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes.

Sweet potatoes are one of the healthiest vegetables. Cook without any fat addition while roasting to keep the flavor intense. These sweet tubers are packed with fiber, vitamin A, potassium and phytochemicals which provide anti-aging and other health benefits.

Cranberries

Pretty-in-pink cranberries are just too good to be true. Cranberries are packed with disease fighting antioxidants such as vitamin C and proanthocyanidins that help to fight cancer, urinary tract infections and premature aging. Its fiber content helps to lower bad cholesterol and improve overall cholesterol profie. However, avoid high sugar presentations of this super fruit.

Pumpkin

This orange vegetable contains carotenoids, vitamin E and fiber. Pumpkin is also a good source of potassium. It is low in calories and is considered one of the healthiest holiday foods. On the other hand, baked pumpkin pies are high in calories and high in fats. Make your pie healthy when you make a low-fat pumpkin pie by lowering the amount of sugar, using egg substitutes, avoiding trans fats in the recipe and using low-fat milk.

Spice ‘em up

Spices such as cinnamon and nutmeg can do more than garnish your eggnog. Studies conducted on these spices have revealed their healthful benefits such as lowering bad cholesterols and maintaining insulin levels in the blood. Use these spices to liven up your vegetable dishes and make them more flavorful without the addition of salt.

Keep your feasting healthy and don’t forget to watch your portions with these healthy holiday foods.

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