Posted on | December 11, 2012 | 2 Comments
As you get all set for your holiday meal, one thing that you’ll want to be taking into account is what type of swaps you can be making to help improve the total calorie count, bringing it down while increasing the nutritional value of the foods that you’re eating.
If you are anything like me, who loves to cook and of course, eat. Gaining weight this yuletide season is a sure thing. While it is to be somewhat expected that you will likely consume a few more calories during this meal than most meals, if you are smart in your approach, it doesn’t have to get out of hand. You can take a few smart choices and healthy swaps at your dinner table without sacrificing your cravings and the spirit of celebration.
Let’s take a quick peak at some of the smart and healthy swaps that you should consider for your Christmas dinner.
Exchanged Mashed Potatoes For Mashed Sweet Potatoes
The first healthy swap to make at your Christmas dinner is to exchange mashed potatoes for mashed sweet potatoes instead. Sweet potatoes are rated lower overall on the GI index and are not going to cause the insulin spike that mashed potatoes would.
To further improve this dish, mash the sweet potatoes with a little chicken broth rather than butter. This will help ensure that you aren’t adding extra fat to the dish.
Exchange Prepared Cranberry Sauce For Home-Made Cranberry Sauce
Moving along, the next smart exchange to make is to trade cranberry sauce that you purchase in the supermarket for cranberry sauce you make on your own. Cranberries themselves are very healthy to eat, but the problem is that the supermarket variety is far too high in simple sugars.
When preparing your own, add Splenda or Stevia for added sweetness and you’ll bring down the calorie count while reducing the impact this sauce has on your blood sugar levels.
Exchange Pumpkin Pie For Yogurt Parfaits
When it comes to desserts, rather than opting for pumpkin pie, which is loaded with fat and calories, go for some yogurt parfaits instead. These will still give a very dessert-like feel and will be high in protein, high in fiber, and high in healthy fats.
Spoon some Greek yogurt into a tall glass, top with some fresh berries, add a sprinkling of slivered almonds or flaxseeds and then repeat this process over again.
Exchange Bread Stuffing For Quinoa Stuffing
Finally, the last healthier swap to make for your thanksgiving meal to help improve the overall nutrition of it is to exchange bread stuffing for quinoa stuff.
Bread stuffing prepared inside the turkey is very high in saturated fat and simple carbs, but if you prepare quinoa stuffing outside of the turkey, being sure to add plenty of fresh vegetables as you make it, you’re going to dramatically bring down the fat and calorie intake.
Make sure you keep your serving size under control and you will be able to add this into your diet without worry.
So there you have the primary things that you need to keep in mind for creating a healthy Christmas dinner. If you think carefully about a few simple exchanges you can make, this meal doesn’t have to leave you frustrated when you step on the scale the next morning.
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