It’s easy to get carried away with food when celebrating the holidays. However, the average American gains only one to two pounds in between Thanksgiving and New Year’s. Doesn’t sound too bad, right? The problem is that most people never lose those excess pounds.
According to Everyday Health, “The best course of action is to stop weight gain before it starts…All you have to do is make the right choices that will allow you to indulge and enjoy, yet keep you from loading up on the fatty, high-calorie dishes.”
Check out some of these healthy holiday food swaps that Everyday Health recommends:
Skip: Full Fat Dips
Eat This Instead: Yogurt Dips
Why: Why waste all of your calories on an appetizer with full-fat sour cream when there is tons more food to come? An ounce of sour cream has about 60 calories, while an ounce of nonfat plain Greek yogurt has only 15-20 calories and the same amount of nonfat sour cream has about 25. The calories that you save quickly add up!
Skip: Candied Yams
Eat This Instead: Roasted Sweet Potatoes
Why: A mere half-cup of candied yams is a whopping 215 calories! Try oven-roasted sweet potatoes brushed with canola or olive oil instead. At ¾ cup and 100 calories, you get more potatoes for fewer calories, and you also get a healthy helping of vitamins and minerals!
Skip: Dark Meat Turkey
Eat This Instead: White Meat Turkey
Why: Did you know that the dark meat in your Turkey has about twice the amount of fat and 40% more calories? Your best bet is to stick to the light meat.
Skip: Traditional Gravy
Eat This Instead: Low-Fat Gravy
Why: Everyday Health recommends making turkey gravy—it’s healthy without losing taste! Melissa Joy Dobbins, MS, RD, LDN makes a healthy gravy with 1 cup of fat-free turkey broth, 2 tablespoons of flour and seasonings to taste. “If you still want to use the drippings from the roasting pan, remove the fat first,” she says. Just remember these two words: portion control—gravy calories add up fast.
Check out for more healthy holiday swaps in Part 2!
And don’t forget to stop at you local Sparkle Market for all of your healthy holiday party needs!