Fend off Weight Gain with these Delicious and Seasonal Picks

Red wine
For only 130 calories per 6-ounce glass, on a cold winter night, you get your antioxidants and a relaxing, fun beverage. And if you want, go European and heat the wine slightly—add any warm fruits you’d like such as apple, pear or mango for a little kick that won’t set you back more than 60-80 calories.

Whether you feature veggies or low-fat meat, chili is a winter food winner. Take black beans, garbanzo beans, kidney beans, onion, cumin, chili powder and even some salsa and warm it up until tender for an easy and nutritious (and delicious) dinner. Bulk it up with added greens (spinach, broccoli rabe, fresh or canned tomatoes) for very few additional calories.

Rosemary is a fragrant herb that adds plenty of flavor and disease-fighting antioxidants to foods. Using rosemary in cooking adds flavor and helps decrease the need for calorie- and sodium-containing ingredients like fat and salt. Foods with more flavor may even help you eat less because the food was more satisfying.

Navy beans
With 8 grams of protein and 6 grams of fiber per half cup, navy beans are another food that will help you feel full for longer. The fiber found in navy beans may help lower cholesterol levels and maintain steady blood sugar levels (pushing off hunger). Using navy beans in soups and chili recipes is a great way to incorporate healthier plant-protein sources in your diet.

Chickpeas, or garbanzo beans, are packed with fiber, which is essential to keeping your digestive system healthy. With 7 grams of protein per half-cup serving, they help keep you satisfied, and in a season filled with soups, stews and one-pot meals, chickpeas are a great addition to any meal or delicious roasted as a snack or salad topper.

Eggs are a superior source of all essential amino acids and provide optimal sources of selenium, iodine, tryptophan and vitamin B12—all of which are important for nourishing the body. Providing the body with optimal nutrients helps in maintaining a healthy weight by stabilizing blood sugar.

Macadamia nuts
Out of all the different types of nuts, macadamia nuts provide the highest amount of monounsaturated fat or ‘clean fat’, clean fat is an important addition to your diet because the right type of fat can provide you with a synergy of nutrients, as well as help keep you feeling full longer.

Potatoes are rich sources of vitamins and minerals—especially the heirloom varieties, most people are concerned with the starch component of potatoes, but they shouldn’t be—the skin of the potato contains enough fiber to help slow the release of starch. And, combined with fresh or steamed vegetables and olive oil, you’re getting almost half your daily allowance of fiber in one meal. Fiber is a win-win addition to your winter diet for regulating blood sugar.

Sensitive to gluten? Try Malanga, a South American root vegetable that can be cooked and eaten like a yam or potato. It’s a fabulous food for people with sensitivity to gluten, and it’s often ground up and used as flour in many breads and baked goods. And its high fiber content helps curb hunger and promotes a healthy digestive system.

Skip seasonal coffee drinks and ciders that can easily add up to more than 300 calories and warm up this winter with some tea instead. Tea is naturally calorie-free and provides plenty of heart-healthy flavonoids.

Possibly one of the healthiest winter foods around, one cup of kale contains only 35 calories, packs in five grams of fiber and more than 1,000 percent of your daily recommended value of vitamin K, 200 percent of vitamin C and 180 percent of vitamin A.

For more information on specific programs to address your blood pressure, contact Dan Prater, ND on 219.613.1161 or via email.

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