Healthy holiday choices to avoid weight gain

The holiday season just wouldn’t be the same without the decadent treats and extravagant meals that mark the season. While these treats are tempting, they can wreak havoc on your health in the long term. But swearing off some of the season’s best assets will only turn you into a Grinch.

While a pound or two may not seem like a big deal, most Americans never get around to losing that holiday weight. Thankfully you don’t have to ban holiday treats from your home. You can fill your plate with healthy options and allow yourself to have treats in moderation. When you want to indulge, there are plenty of options to choose from, but not all goodies are created equal. Go for the smarter option when you are hankering for a treat this holiday season.

Red vs. white

Red wine contains the antioxidant resveratrol, which has great anti-inflammatory, anticoagulant and cholesterol-improving properties.

Hot cocoa vs. eggnog

Instant hot cocoa that comes premade can be full of sugar, but eggnog is a calorie kicker with eggs, cream, and sometimes brandy. Bonus points for making hot cocoa from scratch out of powdered cocoa and milk.

Cinnamon rolls vs. coffee cake

While there are some seriously decadent coffee cakes on the market, there are also some tasty, sensible choices. While cinnamon rolls are packed with butter and sugar, coffee cake can often be made with Greek yogurt and fruit.

Roast beef vs. ham

Roast beef has less saturated fat, sodium and is less processed overall. The tender beef is full of B vitamins and iron.

Gravy vs. butter

Butter is still laden with saturated fat and should be consumed in small quantities, but the creamy condiment is full of calcium, vitamins A and D, calcium and phosphorous. Gravy tends to include butter as well as additional saturated fats from pan drippings.

So don’t worry so much about banning foods this holiday season and remember to make smart choices when they’re available and always savor your bites. It will make eating in moderation much more satisfactory.


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