Every year the holidays roll around and as much as I love them, my body groans a little. It pretty much means six to eight weeks of non-stop eating. We’re talking cookies, cakes, pumpkin bread, pies, and tons of butter, cream cheese and more.
What’s a girl to do?
Eating healthy is a good idea all year round, but considering the holidays are probably the hardest time to do so, it’s good to have a few tricks up your sleeve. Besides, did you know maintaining a healthy weight can reduce your risk of many types of cancer? The American Cancer Society is highlighting favorite holiday recipes with a few tweaks to make them a bit healthier.
Think about it. Little adjustments to holiday recipes can help make the guilt go away and help you keep some cancers at bay. Me? I switch out applesauce for oil and add in a secret ingredient in my pumpkin bread recipes and switch out Greek yogurt for sour cream and mayonnaise in holiday dips.
Pumpkin Bread (adapted from Better in Bulk)
Prep time: 15 minutes Bake time: 1 hour
1 15 oz can pure pumpkin
1 cup brown sugar
2 cups organic white sugar
2 cups whole wheat flour
1/2 cup applesauce
1/2 cup plain Greek yogurt
2/3 cup water
2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
1 tsp vanilla
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp nutmeg
1/2 tsp cloves
*Add in any nut, raisins or chocolate chips to your liking.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray two loaf pans with Canola oil.
Mix together all wet ingredients in a large bowl and dry ingredients in a smaller bowl. Stir the dry ingredients into the pumpkin mixture until blended and pour into the pans. Bake for 50 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean.
Where else can you try to be healthier this holiday season?
Fruits and Vegetables
I struggle with eating enough fruits and vegetables. The American Cancer Society recommends eating at least 2½ cups of vegetables and fruits each day. Here are two resources filled with ideas for upping your fruit and vegetable consumption through the day.
Hello, huge weakness. I adore carbs. Any type of bread I come across (ok, except rye and pumpernickel) is a a friend to me. To help, I can choose whole grains instead of refined grain products. Here are some innovative ways to add more vegetables, fruits, and whole grains to your day while watching your refined carbohydrates, sugar, and fat intake.
Stock your kitchen appropriately
I need easy foods. If it’s not handy or easy to grab, forget about it. Stock your kitchen with a variety of foods that you can throw together for healthy meals in a hurry. Keep these foods on hand for fast meals on busy nights.
When you are done eating? It’s time to get that body moving. Here are some tips to help you fit exercise into your busy schedule – you know, in between shopping, decorating and wrapping gifts.
So there you have it folks. Happy Holidays! Have fun and stay healthy.
If you have a healthy recipe to share, please visit the American Cancer Society Facebook page to add yours.
Photo provided by Better in Bulk. I was not compensated for this post. I am proud to support the American Cancer Society.