The holidays are a time for eating delicious food and spending time with friends and family. Studies show the average American gains one pound during the holiday season. If you are on a special diet due to elevated blood pressure or high cholesterol, holiday foods can be tricky. No one food or beverage is good or bad, but some have more health properties than others.
Review the following five holiday foods to indulge in this year (and the seven to limit consumption of) to ensure a healthy holiday season.
NICE Holiday Foods
- Cranberry Sauce
- Pumpkin Pie
- Dark Chocolate
Eat these lighter, nutrient rich foods more often during the holiday season. Make it a challenge to try and get the healthiest version of each dish available.
NAUGHTY Holiday Foods
- Egg Nog
- Pecan Pie
- Cheese Cake
- Coffee Beverages
These foods and drinks are special occasion foods to enjoy on a limited basis. Reach for these foods less often or modify the recipes to make the dishes healthier. Choose wisely during the holidays. Plan ahead for holiday parties, drink water prior to eating out, and eat the “naughty foods” in moderation.
Take care of yourself this holiday season, and remember that fitness, stress management and sleep also play important roles during the holidays!
Written by: Beth Stefura, RD,LD, Ohio State University, Extension Educator, Mahoning County, firstname.lastname@example.org
Reviewed by: Donna Green, Ohio State University, Extension Educator, Erie County, email@example.com