Christmas Dish Hacks For A Healthy Holiday
As the jack-o-lantern lights across the world were snuffed the bells began to jingle in anticipation. If you’re a foodie like me the countdown to the holidays started the moment December hit and “All I Want for Christmas” started to play. The holiday season is upon us and with only a couple of days to go is one of the biggest feasts of the year._________________________________________________________________________
Every year much of the country indulges themselves, eating their weight in food before taking a champion's well deserved nap. Nutritionists suggest women have a daily calorie intake of approximately 2,000. During Christmas the average person will consume 7,000 calories, more than 3 times the recommended amount.
One day of overeating may seem to deserve a pass, however your body begs to differ. “Research shows that overeating, even in the short-term, can cause insulin resistance, in which cells are resistant to taking up the glucose that insulin is trying to deliver.” You may not experience the long term effects after one day, but that doesn’t stop some of the immediate ones, such as:
- Rise in Blood Pressure
- Slight Stomach Pains
- Acid Reflux
Possibly one of the most puzzling parts is figuring out how to cut back without missing out on some of the must-haves, that's why we've given these tips.
Tips for a Healthier Christmas Dinner
1 Load up on Veggies instead of Carbs
Macaroni, stuffing, cornbread, rolls, you name it, carbs; sweet or savory are found everywhere on dinner tables across the country. It can be easy to indulge in all the carb galore this holiday has to offer, but do we really need them all to enjoy our day? Some of your favorites can still be at your table with a twist. Here are some suggestions:
- Cauliflower Mashed Potatoes: ½ serving of mashed potatoes is 18 grams of carbs compared to 5 grams of carbs in cauliflower mash
- Try mac & cheese sans a chunk of the carbs. According to registered dietitian Rachael Link, “Pasta is high in carbs, with a one-cup serving of cooked spaghetti containing between 37–43 grams, depending on whether it is refined or whole-grain (6, 7).”
- Switching out your traditional macaroni noodles for low-carb ones, like Heart of Palm pasta, is a simple and still satisfying solution to cutting back.
2 Portion size
Sometimes it may seem like no matter what you do you still find that it doesn’t seem to make a difference. It’s not always about what you eat, most times it’s all about portion. According to the National Institute of Health these are the following serving size recommendations:
- Vegetables — 2 to 3 cups
- Fruits — 1½ to 2 cups
- Grains — 5 to 8 ounces
- Dairy — 3 cups (fat-free or low-fat)
- Protein foods — 5 to 6½ ounces
- Oils — 5 to 7 teaspoons
3 Eating until you are Stuffed
The holidays are guilty pleasure central, and everyone is all too eager to indulge. If you have to open a button or loosen a belt to finish your plate chances are you have had way too much. Listen to your body to avoid having your holiday being confined to the couch and stuck with a slight stomach ache. We know it may be tempting to keep going, but remember you can always wrap it up for later.