Everyone knows that the upcoming holidays can be a time when we stuff ourselves with loads of food. It tends to leave us feeling sluggish and too full to even move! Thus, it might be helpful to try cooking some healthy holiday meals that won’t leave you feeling so tired afterwards. Check out any of the below 10 healthy meals this festive season instead.
- Pumpkin risotto – Pumpkins are rich in Vitamin A and Vitamin C which are key for your health and to prevent tissue damage. The risotto will also give you the right carbohydrates needed to fuel your body.
- Loaded sweet potatoes – Sweet potatoes are high in fibre and antioxidants which help us have a healthy brain and gut. They are also high in Vitamin A which helps strengthen our immune system. Thus, load them up with anything like cheese, bacon and onions to create a healthy meal.
- Oven-roasted turkey – Turkey is an excellent source of protein full of vitamins and minerals. As well as this, it is low in fat and one of the healthiest meat options there is available.
- Oven-roasted squash – Simply cutting up squash and mixing it with some garlic and parsley can help to reduce your oxidative stress. It’s important to reduce this since oxidative stress can cause neurodegenerative diseases such as Parkinson’s.
- Garlic butter broccoli & Kale – Sauteed broccoli and kale with garlic butter can be a delicious side dish that you can add to any meal. Broccoli contains a number of fibre, antioxidants and potassium which would help prevent cardiovascular diseases.
- Creamed spinach – This recipe can also be a quick side dish to add to your main festive meal. As well as this, spinach has several benefits to help prevent cancer, reduce blood sugar and reduce hypertension.
- Roasted garlic mashed potatoes and cauliflower – Potatoes and cauliflower are full of nutrients, fibre and antioxidants which help prevent a number of health problems. It can also be a good side dish to add to your hearty meal.
- Healthy gingerbread cookies – Ginger is a powerful spice with plenty of healthy benefits. It helps with digestion, regulates your blood sugar and it even helps with anti-inflammation to ease aches and pains.
- Healthy pumpkin pie bars – As previously mentioned, pumpkins are rich in various vitamins. Thus, these bars would be a nice treat to add as a dessert to your festive lunch or dinner!
- Healthy chocolate truffles – Despite the negative connotation that chocolate may have when it comes to health, it actually does offer a number of benefits. Chocolate helps to improve your brain function and your heart health.
If you’re stuck on what to cook for the upcoming festivities, try one of the above and reap the benefits from them!
- Healthy Holiday & Occasion Recipes. (n.d.). EatingWell. https://www.eatingwell.com/recipes/17959/holidays-occasions/
- 30 Healthy Holiday Desserts You Need to Try. (n.d.). The Clean Eating Couple. https://thecleaneatingcouple.com/30-healthy-holiday-desserts-you-need-to-try/
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Mandy Brincat is a Gestalt psychotherapist who enjoys working therapeutically with adults on various issues. These include general mental health and wellbeing. She also has experience working with anxiety, victims of domestic violence and eating disorders.