Don’t skip holiday treats, just try these seasonal food swaps instead.
Enjoying holiday treats don’t have to put you on the healthy eating naughty list. Some easy seasonal food swaps allow the indulgence without the guilt. After all, the holidays are about enjoying food and the merriment of the season.
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Since the holidays are often filled with too many tempting treats, a few seasonal food swaps can make all the difference. No one is saying that you can’t have a treat or two. The idea is to choose that holiday treat that fits within your healthy eating lifestyle.
Jaclyn London, MS, RD, CDN | Head of Nutrition & Wellness for MyWW+ suggests the following seasonal food swaps.
Peppermint bark vs. holiday cookies
From the sweet chocolate peppermint to the classic holiday cookie, both holiday treats are fill many plated during the festive season. Although both holiday treats have about the same calories, London suggests enjoying the peppermint bark. A dark chocolate peppermint bark will be rich and decadent, which can help you savor each bite a little longer.
Chocolate covered fruit vs. chocolate covered nuts
Putting aside the debate over chocolate covered cherries, this healthy food swap is quite interesting. Most people would think that fruit is the better option. Actually, London says to pick the nuts.
From the plant-based protein to less sugar, the chocolate covered nuts are the better option. London suggests having some fruit for one snack and the chocolate covered nuts for a little treat another time.
Macaron vs. macaroon
Even though some people confuse the two cookies, the holiday treat on the nice list if the French macaron. At about 100 calories, the light, airy macaron is the perfect indulgence.
Scalloped potatoes vs. green bean casserole
While both dishes might be classic comfort foods, London suggests the green beans. Consider the types of cheese, butter and other ingredients, too. And, if you have to have the crunch. There are other option that the fried onions if you think outside of the box.
Mini quiche vs. mini tart
Who doesn’t love a quiche or tart during a holiday brunch? If you have to have one of these holiday treats, it is your choice because both have about the same nutritional value. Since the pie crust can be a be caloric item, it is considered a sometimes treat.
If you do choose to have a quiche, consider adding some more vegetables to the mix. It might not take away the fat and sugar, but it will be easier to eat some more vegetables during the day.
Meringues vs. gum drops
As everyone knows, the best part of gingerbread house making is the candy. Unfortunately, it is better to use those gum drops as decoration, not as holiday treats.
London recommends the meringues over the gum drops. Since a meringue generally has about 30 calories, you can have several. Hopefully, those light, airy, melt in your mouth treats come in many flavors.
These healthy food swaps for your favorite holiday foods are just a few options. No one is saying that you can’t have a few holiday treats this season. Mindful healthy eating choices will keep you on Santa’s nice list. Doesn’t everyone want to be on the nice list this year?
What is your best holiday healthy eating tip?