Enjoy Traditional Holiday Dishes With a Healthier Spin



The food you prepare for your guests this holiday season will influence how they feel and how much they’re able to enjoy the festivities. Leave them feeling happy, healthy, energized, and ready to mix and mingle with foods that will not only taste great but help heal their bodies from all the holiday over-indulgence.

A few tweaks to these recipes, and you can make your holidays much healthier: 


1. Enjoy fancy health drinks for a fraction of the price! Keep a pitcher of fruit- or herb-infused water in the fridge so you and your holiday guests can make it your go-to beverage during this busy season.

Whipping up a batch of your own “spa water” couldn’t be easier, and it will keep your brain, muscles, and tissues well-hydrated.

    • Fill a pitcher about 1/3 of the way with clean, sliced fruit — citrus and berries are perfect to start with.

    • Muddle, or press on them slightly, to release some of their juices.

    • Then fill the pitcher with ice and pour in tap or filtered water.

    • Now let it sit in your fridge for at least an hour.

    • Enjoy!

Experiment with different fruit combinations, and try adding mint, basil, rosemary, lavender, or other herbs. 


2. Make breakfast while you sleep! Wake up to a scrumptiously creamy breakfast of oatmeal that simmered in your slow cooker overnight.

    • At bedtime, combine one part steel-cut oats and four parts water in your cooker.

    • Set it on low.

    • In the morning, add sweeteners like honey, and toppings such as raisins, berries, or nuts. 

Double or triple the recipe for overnight guests, and give them all a delicious, heart-healthy serving of fiber.


3. Nibble on this guilt-free snack! Fill your candy bowl with a surprisingly tasty and healthy alternative — cinnamon roasted pumpkin seeds. These crunchy little nuggets are jam-packed with protein, magnesium, and zinc, with 1 ounce coming in at only 125 calories.

    • To get started, submerge your seeds in a bowl of water and use your fingers to remove the pulp.

    • Drain, let dry for an hour or so.

    • Spray lightly with vegetable oil, tossing to coat.

    • Spread them in a single layer on a cookie sheet.

    • Next sprinkle on a combination of cinnamon and pumpkin pie spice for a sweet treat.

    • Roast at 175º F for 15 minutes.

For even more tips on how to cook healthier during the holidays, check out Your Body Can Heal Itself.

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  • FC&A Staff Writer