HEALTHY LIVING & HOLIDAYS

How to Survive the Holidays Without Sabotaging Your Health

Ky Carlson

10 December 2017

The holidays are some of the best days of the year! They are all about spending time with loved ones, giving back to your community, and of course, stuffing your face with delicious food! Unfortunately, most of the holiday food choices are full of sugar, unhealthy oils, and processed junk that is detrimental to our health. But have no fear, we are here to help you navigate through the holidays while keeping your health intact.

Whether it is an office get-together, neighborhood gathering, or a family member’s house, holiday parties and meals are a common occurrence during this time of the year. If you abide by the below rules, you will able to enjoy all the flavors of the holidays without sabotaging your health:

The flavors and smells of the holidays are enticing. Learning how to handle and enjoy them in a healthy way will help you avoid the holiday bulge and associated health risks.

01 | Always offer to bring a dish to the party or meal. Not only is this polite, but it also enables you to be able to bring a dish that you KNOW you will be able to eat. Side dishes are always a good option, as this way you are not upstaging the host’s food, but still bringing a tasty dish that you will feel comfortable eating.

02 | If your host is not comfortable with you bringing a dish, let them know ahead of time what your dietary restrictions are. While the host will not rearrange their entire menu for you, nor should they feel like they need to do so, they will be able to tell you what dishes are best for you to consume. As long as you are upfront about your dietary needs, most hosts are happy to have at least one dish that accommodates your needs. Never be afraid to speak up about your dietary choices. It is worse for the host to question why you are not partaking in their food than to just let them know ahead of time. This way, their feelings are not hurt and you can have something to eat— it’s a win-win!

03 | If you’re attending a party where you do not know the host, or don’t feel comfortable talking to them about your dietary needs ahead of time, the safest bet is to consume a protein of some kind, such as a non-fried meat, and vegetables. Avoid the bread basket, chips and dips, cheesy casseroles, and desserts. If you are craving something sweet, always go for the fruit.

In order to help you enjoy the holidays without sabotaging your health, we’ve compiled some of our favorite, guilt-free holiday recipes. These are great, traditional dishes to bring to your next holiday party or family meal. These are sure to become staples in your household—and ones you don’t have to feel bad about eating! Here’s one of our favorites:

CRANBERRY ALMOND UPSIDE-DOWN CAKES
Makes: 12 | Prep Time: 15 Min. | Cook Time: 25 Min.


Ingredients

For the batter:
2 1⁄2 cups almond flour

1⁄2 tsp. salt

1⁄2 tsp ground cinnamon

1 tsp. ground allspice

3 eggs

1⁄2 cup coconut oil (melted, but not hot)

1⁄2 cup honey

For the fruit mix:
1 1⁄2 cups fresh cranberries (chopped)

1 Tbsp. orange zest (freshly grated)

1 Tbsp. lemon zest (freshly grated)

1⁄4 cup honey

 
Directions

Preheat oven to 350°F and grease muffin tin.

Combine flour, salt, baking soda, cinnamon and allspice in a bowl.

In a separate bowl combine eggs, oil and honey.

Combine wet and dry ingredients and set aside.

Toss cranberries with orange zest, lemon zest and honey.

Arrange mixture into a single layer at the bottom of each muffin cup.

Top with cake batter and cover evenly.

Place pan into oven for 20-25 minutes or until tops are golden brown and fully cooked.

If your cake gets too brown but needs to cook another minute or two place a sheet of foil on top and continue cooking.

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