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Adding Healthier Changes to Holiday Menus

By Stephen R. Farris

The holidays are a stressful time of year. There's all the shopping that has to be done and trying to choose the right gift for your friends and loved ones. Probably the biggest stress of all is on the cooks. Moms and grandmothers are notorious for wanting to prepare those special meals just right. The ham or turkey has to be moist and tender, casseroles must have just the right amount of seasonings, and the desserts should rival any hometown bakery. 

If not, then Mom or Grandma will not be pleasant people to be around come dinnertime. Another thing they may worry about is fixing items that are going to be healthy for their families. In this age in which nutrition is on a lot of folks' minds, don't be surprised if your holiday table is filled with many things you haven't tried before.

Planning in Advance

Usually a week or two ahead of Christmas and New Year's, whoever is going to be cooking the holiday meal should have a good estimate as to who will be showing up for dinner. This will also give them an idea of what types of items to prepare, especially if you or someone in your group may be diabetic or have digestive and/or intestinal problems. After all, we want everyone to enjoy the fellowship with each other and still be able to eat with the rest of us.

Using Healthier Ingredients

For dressings and marinades, substitute fruit juices to give them a little citric kick versus using oil. Use fat-free dairy products and toss in a few herbs from the garden for dips used in snacking before dinner. Toss out the chips and break out the celery or carrot sticks to use for enjoying dips. Use cinnamon or fine chopped pecans to top those sweet potatoes and/or baked potatoes rather than margarine or butter. 

Change Your Techniques

Trim up your meats from excess fats; bake, broil or roast them instead of frying in oil or grease. This would be a great time to baste them as well, using a citrus flavored marinade instead of coating them with bottled sauces. 

There are plenty of ways to stay with your healthy lifestyle goals and still enjoy this festive time of year. Visit with your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic. They not only help relieve back and joint pain, but can offer your advice and tips on nutrition and exercise too.

To learn more about your health, wellness and fitness, see your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic in Fayetteville, N.C.

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