The holiday season is in full swing and finalizing your holiday party plans is likely underway. As you finalize menus and make the holiday party rounds, vow to make this year’s celebration a festive and healthier one. Here are some tips to do so.
Make Smart Substitutions
Some people may be hesitant to modify traditional or family recipes because they’ve come to know, love and trust these recipes through the years. The good news is minor tweaks to recipes can make them so much healthier without sacrificing taste.
For cooking, try swapping in an easy and healthier ingredient like yogurt. Yogurt works as a perfect and nutritious substitute for rich and high-calorie ingredients like butter, cream cheese or mayonnaise. Check out smart options like Siggi’s Icelandic-style yogurt. Siggi’s also has a host of festive and healthy recipes and a helpful guide on ingredient swaps listed here.
For baking, try substituting whole-wheat flour for all-purpose flour in baked goods. This will add a fiber boost and give baked goods a denser taste to fill you up faster and longer. Instead of covering baked goods with icing, consider just drizzling on top or using a sprinkle of cinnamon or nutmeg instead for a sweet boost.
Keep Choices in Check
Before diving in, take a look at the party buffet and plan selections ahead of time. Assessing options and coming up with a strategy before will make you less likely to overeat. Go big on lean protein like meat and seafood skewers or prosciutto-wrapped dates. This protein will keep you fuller longer. Balance your meal with larger portions of veggies and fruits and save less room on your plate for high-carb options like mashed potatoes or stuffing and sugary desserts. Portions are key!
Plan Indulgences Consciously
You don’t need to deprive yourself over the holidays and forgo all holiday treats. A little planning goes a long way. Decide on what to indulge in and what to skip. A good rule of thumb is to sample treats that are homemade with real and natural ingredients instead of the processed packaged party sweets. Better-for-you options include dark chocolate covered berries and fruits, gingerbread cookies, hard candies like peppermints, puddings and candy cane and chocolate kisses.
Add to your Christmas, Hanukah and New Year’s celebrations the gift of a few smart decisions and pre-planning. This will keep you healthy and happy this holiday season. Now that is something to celebrate!