Bring out the cake and champagne, it’s the holidays!
While this might sound like a wonderfully festive idea, it could also be the end of your carefully-managed diet. The holidays is known for having the richest, most sumptuous, and most sinful delicacies and dishes that is sure to break even the most persistent dieter. But, that doesn’t mean that you should resort to starving yourself this season; there are healthy holiday superfoods that you can indulge yourself without feeling guilty!
- Spiced Cider
What could be better than spending a chilly evening wrapped up in a blanket by the fireplace, sipping a cup of warm spiced cider (and reading a book by Dickens, but that’s entirely optional)? Cider is made from apple juice, and is full of potassium and vitamin C to keep your energy and your body’s resistance both high. The spices added during the brewing not only enhance the flavor, but add their own special blend of benefits, too.
Cinnamon is a popular spice all year round, but is especially prominent around fall and winter, when everything edible is laced with delicious pumpkin. Cinnamon has natural sugars that sweeten food and drinks without adding extra calories . Also, it has been found that taking cinnamon helps people lose weight, because it speeds up the metabolism. Add that to the fact that cinnamon has antibacterial properties, and it’s clear why this aromatic spice is one of the holiday superfoods you can indulge in.
Speaking of pumpkin in everything, pumpkin is actually a healthy and tasty superfood that you can treat yourself this season. Rich in fiber and beta-carotene, pumpkin also has good levels of vitamin C and potassium to keep you energized both inside and out.
Not everything on this list will be about the side dishes. Turkey is one delicious fowl that is surprisingly healthy, too. It has less fat than most poultry, plus it helps that it comes in bigger portions, too. That means you can help yourself to more breast slices and stuffing, and even some of the starches, too.
The stuffing mentioned along with the turkey traditionally comes from fresh cranberries. Rich in natural sugars, no additive sweeteners are needed in preparing the sauce. Cranberries are rich in antioxidants and vitamin C, which are essential nutrients during cold and flu-infested winter seasons.
- Sweet Potatoes
This is the starch that was mentioned along with the turkey. These sweet potatoes can replace traditional potatoes for a healthier, yet as tasty starchy side dish. As the name suggests, sweet potatoes have natural sweeteners that will satisfy any sweet tooth cravings, but sweet potatoes also have potassium, beta-carotene, and fiber.
- Mixed Nuts
Trail mix is often served as snack during this season, especially for the tots who are constant nibblers. While commercially-packed trail mix is notorious for adding more than nuts (like candy and chocolate), you can make your own trail mix made up of purely roasted and toasted nuts.
Almonds, walnuts, cashews, pistachios, pecans, and peanuts are all very good sources of protein and fiber. Almonds have essential natural oils that help lower cholesterol, while walnuts and cashews are known to have good levels of antioxidants. What’s more, these nuts can also be added to baked goods, providing a delightful crunch and a welcome healthy benefit.
This delightful fruit is known to have one of the highest amounts of antioxidants around. Aside from munching on them fresh, you can also get fresh pomegranate juice, or add them in salads and desserts.
- Whole Wheat Bread and Pasta
If you’re someone who enjoys bread and pasta, opt for a healthier substitute by choosing whole wheat beard and pasta. Whole wheat goods are rich in fiber that aids in digestion.
- Beans and Peas
Often the most neglected dishes, these two are actually holiday superfoods that are rich in fiber and potassium, which keep the body energized as well as help the body get rid of excess sodium.
Now that you know 10 of the healthiest superfoods this season, you’ll know what to help yourself with without feeling guilty for it!
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