What to do, what to do!! I love to eat all my childhood favorites, especially around the holidays! What is a person to do to maintain a heart-healthy eating plan with all the holiday fare within arm’s reach? Fear not, my friends, help is just a click away! I love the Internet ... I love the vastness ... I love the accessibility - I love to research!There are so many websites offering a lighter fare for food prep, but where do you start? How about one at a time. Let’s start with Thanksgiving. Assuming you are not vegetarian you will be preparing turkey. If you are vegetarian/vegan I have a hunch you can find recipes to keep you faithful to your choice. For those who just want to lighten up those heavy holiday meals, I’d start with Vegetarian Times. Why, I hear you ask? Because taking your side dishes up a notch will get more veggies into your meals with little effort.Stuffing ... dressing? What’s the difference? Even famous chefs around the world cannot agree, but it is my opinion that if it's cooked INSIDE the bird it's stuffing and if it's cookout OUTSIDE the bird it's dressing. Now, back to the issue at hand. Is there a ‘good for you’ stuffing? Remembering moderation is important regardless of its health value (I often forget that!) ... but yes, there are some much better than others.
Fruit and Toasted Almond Stuffing
This recipe, created by Ricki Blau, won third place in Vegetarian Time's 2009 Reader Recipe Contest. Blau's family and friends range from omnivores to vegans, so when they gather for holidays she likes to prepare food they can all share. Blau put this recipe together last October when she hosted a few Canadian-American families for Thanksgiving dinner.
Per 1/2-cup serving: Calories: 343, Protein: 8g, Total fat: 15g, Saturated fat: 2g, Carbs: 46g, Cholesterol: mg, Sodium: 380mg, Fiber: 6g, Sugars: 17g
Looking for some side dishes to replace or enhance your usual dishes? I’m sure you know all about the sweet potato casserole that finds its way to American Thanksgiving tables ... you know the one I mean with the cute little marshmallows sprinkles on top? Right? Well, here on Everyday Health, I found a great recipe that’s a bit more heart-healthy.
Smashed Spiced Sweet Potatoes
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
Nutritional Info (Per serving):
Calories: 113, Saturated Fat: 1g, Sodium: 243mg, Dietary Fiber: 3g, Total Fat: 2g, Carbs: 22g, Cholesterol: 5mg, Protein: 2g
Carb Choices: 1.5
Recipe Source: Eating Well
Prep Time: 10 mins
Cook Time: 1 h
Rest Time: 10 mins
Total Time: 1 h 20 mins
Now, let’s talk about cranberry sauce. I hope you’re not opening a can of processed cranberry jelly or even the canned whole cranberry sauce that’s also available. This only takes a minute and uses heart-healthy walnuts, too! The sugar is still there, but you can substitute whatever sweetener you like.
Heritage Lane Cranberry Sauce
"I grew up on a secluded dirt road called Heritage Lane and every Thanksgiving my family would pick wild cranberries and make this sauce for our guests," reminisces Eden Hommes, who received honorable mention in VT's 2009 Reader Recipe Contest for this recipe.
Per 1/2-cup serving: Calories: 290, Protein: 3g, Total fat: 13g, Saturated fat: 1g, Carbs: 41g, Cholesterol: mg, Sodium: 4mg, Fiber: 3g, Sugars: 36g
All in all, most everyone needs to make a change. Many people make the decision to “blow it” because it’s the holidays and come January they’re beating themselves up. I'd rather pat myself on the back for a job well done! Wouldn't you?
More holiday recipes coming next week. I plan to stay true to myself this holiday season and keep my eye on the ball ... staying heart-healthy!
I am ...
... a former blogger for a health site, which means eating healthy aka heart smart
which has become a passion for me. I will start at the beginning when I first
discovered I had high cholesterol.