Last week I highlighted which foods to beware of over the holidays as they can contribute to your stress level. While the season is full of these high-fat, high-sugar, high-calorie foods, there is also an abundance of good-for-you foods. Here’s my top 5:
1. Sweet potatoes: These little gems are full of vitamins and minerals such as Vitamin C, Beta-carotene and fibre. To maximize their health potential, enjoy your sweet potatoes with a bit of olive oil and some herbs (not doused in brown sugar, butter or maple syrup). Also try them mashed with buttermilk and some herbs or with grated apple.
2. Christmas Turkey: Turkey breast is one of the leanest meats available and also full of nutrients that are good for your brain and body.
3. Pumpkin: this festive pick is loaded with beta-carotene, antioxidants and high in fibre. It is also low calorie when not served in a piecrust and topped with whipped cream so try a pumpkin soufflé instead!
4. Cranberries: The vibrant berries not only add color to your Christmas table, they’re also packed with antioxidants and vitamin C.
5. Dark Chocolate (or cocoa): Rich in antioxidants, this sweet treat can be a healthy addition to your holiday meal. Because of the strong flavor, you will likely be satisfied with a smaller portion.
Food and food traditions are a key part of many of our holiday celebrations. While we’ve listed both best and worst items, you can enjoy your favorites (on either list) if you practice moderation.