Smart holiday eating is certainly a feat during the season of indulging. Yet, in the midst of our holiday preparations and parties, we need to put a foot down in the name of our health and reclaim our bodies to a state of wellness.
It’s tempting to wait until the New Year to make the effort to eat better. But, why wait? Why not start sooner, rather than later? We want to be able to enjoy the holidays and it takes a lot of energy to do so. If we’re not getting energy and nutrients from the proper foods, we might as well go into hibernation now.
Smart holiday eating sounds like we have to give up the treats that make us happy. But our bodies deserve better than processed sugary confections and empty calories! With the tips below, smart holiday eating won’t seem like a chore:
1. Read labels carefully
For those of us who might not know where to start, let the labels on your food do all the talking. Err on the side of caution with your ingredient lists; steer clear of high amounts of cholesterol, saturated fats, other toxins from contaminated ingredients and sugar.
Researchers from the Harvard T.H Chan School of Public Health specifically warn against a high intake of sugar, especially from SSBs, or sugar-sweetened beverages. One professor of public health policy stated that, “SSBs are a leading source of added sugar to the diet for adults and children in the U.S. and their consumption is strongly linked to obesity.”
Karuna was designed to fight this dangerous, sugary trend by only allowing plant-based ingredients, like monk fruit and Chinese red dates, to naturally sweeten each beverage. For example, this could be the difference between consuming 55 grams of sugar in a leading category juice to only 12 grams that comes naturally from the Aronia berries and Mung bean sprouts in Karuna’s Heal detox juice.
2. Understand what different ingredients do
Your body can benefit from different ingredients once you understand what they actually do!
For instance, we’ve already mentioned how Chinese red dates are a great natural sweetener. But were you aware that they can also be used as a seasonal allergy aid, anti-inflammatory or for weight control purposes?
And other superfoods aren’t a myth, either. Take Aronia berries, for example. These chokeberries are powerful antioxidants which are packed with essential vitamins, nutrients and dietary fibers. Food can act as medicine for our bodies, so be mindful of the ingredients you consume and how your body will be affected.
3. Try your hand at incorporating plant-based or vegan options
Trying to quit eating meat cold-turkey (pun intended) is not the easiest thing to do. It may not be for everyone, either. What’s important to remember is that high amounts of fat and cholesterol in certain meats can be harmful. Plant-based protein, on the other hand, has many proven benefits like lowering your risk of disease or giving you more energy. That’s why our next smart holiday eating tip is to incorporate vegan and plant-based dishes into your celebratory meals. And we’ve got three recipes ready for you to use!
Recipes #1 and #2 come from our friend Gina Marie, otherwise known as Vegan with Curves. She has two tasty recipes that take their own spin on holiday favorites: sweet potatoes glazed with Fruity Longan and vegan nog sweetened with Café Turmerific!
In the end, smart holiday eating begins with a mindset determined to make healthy changes. Holidays can be hectic, and this sometimes leads to stress, but with a little more focus, and support from a close friend or relative, we can build up our motivation to eat right and continue down the path towards better health!