Think you’re eating healthy this holiday season? Think again. Your favorite holiday foods are loaded with way more calories that you can imagine.
From the Christmas stuffing to New Year’s bubbly, how many calories are lurking in your favorite trimmings . . . and how can you cut some calories here and there while still enjoying all of the holiday flavors you love?
The Christmas bird. Though turkey is the most commonplace centerpiece of the Christmas table, the traditional bird was actually the goose. Good thing too, as while roast goose is quite moist and delicious, enjoying it with the skin on is 518 calories for six ounces. Without the skin? Still 405 calories. Then again, slathering butter on the turkey, brining it, or bathing it in gravy packs the pounds onto the healthy fowl. Don’t even think about deep frying it. Your waistline will thank you later.
Better choice: Turkey. Six ounces of dark meat—skin on—is 350 calories. Six ounces of light meat without skin? 216 calories.
Holiday ham. Ah, the holiday ham. It’s the second most popular Christmas dish. And while it might seem high in calories, six ounces is about 330 calories, roughly the same as turkey.
But be careful: The key here is not to go nuts with the glaze. That said, because ham is brined, it’s high in sodium, so if you’re watching your salt intake, stick with turkey.
Cranberry sauce. Oh, hey! A fruit! This is healthy, right? Nope. Though cranberries on their own are healthy—and packed with vitamin C—cranberry sauce is loaded with sugar. Half a cup of the sweet side is about 209 calories and 52 grams of sugar . . . about the same as a peppermint mocha latte.
Better choice: Sweeten frozen cranberries with fruit juices instead. Yes, you’re still adding sugar, but at least you’re also adding some vitamins.
Stuffing. Whether boxed or homemade, it’s hard to make stuffing light since it has a bread base and it’s held together with butter. It rolls in around 180 calories for a half cup, and most of that is empty carbs.
Better choice: If you must have stuffing, try a brown rice recipe or at least use a whole-grain or sprouted-grain bread like those made by Ezekiel 4:9. Swap out fatty meats for turkey sausage and use olive oil instead of butter. And load it up with lots of veggies! It’ll be more filling and much better for you.
Mashed potatoes. On their own, mashed potatoes aren’t so bad. A half-cup of plain mashed potatoes is about 200 calories, less if you make them with just potatoes and high-quality olive oil instead of with milk and butter!
Better choice: For a side with a richer, deeper flavor, try dicing up sweet potatoes. They’re higher in vitamin C and other nutrients and their high fiber count goes easier on your blood sugar.
Eggnog. I don’t imagine that you think a drink made from eggs, whole milk, sugar, heavy cream, and rum—oh, and some nutmeg—would be healthy. In fact, try 343 calories a glass. Yikes.
Better choice: Stay away from eggnog…period. But if you MUST, then at least choose the lighter version and only allow yourself one small glass, with no alcohol added.
Champagne. Want a great hangover? Go for the bubbly. The bubbles will actually get you tipsy faster, which can lead to one nasty headache in the AM. Plus, each flute contains about 133 calories, and they go down quickly . . . so it’s easy to ratchet up the calories quickly.
Better choice: Cocktail. Water.
What are your favorite holiday foods? Do you try to make them healthier?
Article Source: Team BeachbodyPrint This