17 Dec Staying on Track During the Holidays
This time of year is usually spent with family and friends, sharing food and drink and being merry. Holiday buffets will be filled with food galore, sugary treats and alcohol too. So how does one stick to healthy eating while still being merry this holiday season? These quick and easy tips will help you stay on track and have great fun while doing so:
- Don’t head off to a holiday party or event hungry. Have a nourishing snack before you go. A generous handful of nuts and dried fruit, some vegetables dipped in hummus, or tortilla chips and guacamole will do. Each of these snacks will provide you a little fat, protein and fiber to keep you satiated.
- Keep in mind that fat and fiber are your two good friends when digesting sugar. You can usually find salads, vegetables, guacamole, dips and cheese at a party. While the dips and cheese may not be the healthiest of all choices, they’ll provide the body a dose of fat alongside the fiber of the greens and vegetables to help balance the sugar of any dessert you choose to enjoy.
- Fill up on connection more than food. Food tends to be the center of every party, we come together to dine, and most often all of the guests will congregate around the kitchen to visit and munch. Food fills you up, but it doesn’t provide fulfillment. We get fulfillment from the joy we feel in life, and the joy comes from our connection with all the people at the party. Make a commitment before going to an event to focus on these connections, to fill up on conversation and laughter more than the items on your plate. I think you’ll be amazed at how wonderful you feel when you do so.
- If you’re going to drink alcohol at the party, be sure to have food before and during your consumption. Select drinks that are low in sugar and be mindful of your threshold. If you’re going for a mixer, use club soda instead of tonic water to cut sugar. If you need to sweeten a drink, add a splash of a fruit juice. Please do not reach for diet tonic water, as this is full of artificial sweeteners that are harmful to the body.
- If you’re baking holiday treats to share at the party, feel free to substitute regular sugar with coconut palm sugar, agave nectar or maple syrup. Each of these all-natural sugar options are a healthy alternative to sugar and won’t compromise the flavor of your baked good.
- Feel free to break tradition if it means a healthier holiday for everyone. Clean up your recipes to include healthier ingredients, make fewer baked goods so you’re not snacking on them for weeks on end, and find ways to enjoy time with each other over a family game night.
Many blessings to you this holiday and all year through!
It’s a pleasure to serve you! Feel free to email me with comments or questions: connect@AngelaGaffney.com.
White Bean and Kale Soup
1 large ham hock or other type of ham bone
4 quarts of water
3 garlic cloves, minced
2 cans organic white beans, rinsed
2 carrots, diced
2 celery stalks with leaves, diced
1 onion, diced
1 large sweet potato, diced
1 bunch of kale, thinly sliced
In a stock pot, cook ham hock in four quarts of water. Bring to a boil and keep at a boil for 45 minutes. Add carrot, celery, onion and garlic. Continue to cook until carrots start to soften, approximately 15 minutes. Add remaining ingredients and cook until sweet potatoes and carrots are fully cooked. Spoon into bowls, serve and enjoy!
Recipe compliments Angela Gaffney: “The Daily Essentials Cookbook Collection-Lunch”