There is nothing so sweet as the smiles from loved ones during the holiday season. And what isn’t there to smile about? The season is full of family gatherings, holiday parties, beautifully wrapped presents, and yummy treats! Ah, yes…all of the tasty and sugary treats. While they come with the season, in large quantities, they also hinder good health.
This season, alternate confections with sweet, healthy snacks that are good for your family, but also help combat your sweet tooth. If you are in need of some inspiration, try setting out one of the following:
Dark Chocolate Dipped Strawberries
You don’t have to feel bad about letting your kids munch on these. Strawberries are packed with vitamin C, manganese, folate (B9), and potassium. And they taste great! Give them a light coating of dark chocolate (an excellent source of antioxidants), and you’ve got a crowd pleaser.
Save that extra dark chocolate for this easy-to-make snack. Stick some bananas in the freezer. Once they are solid, cover them in dark chocolate and then roll them in crushed peanuts. Bananas are a great source of potassium, which can lower blood pressure. Additionally, peanuts are protein-rich and help you have sustained energy long after you’ve stopped munching.
This dessert can be made a multitude of different ways. Take plain yogurt and layer it with your favorite granola mix, dried raisins or cranberries, fresh fruit, and a drizzle of honey. This concoction offers a nice serving of calcium and protein. And it may become a family favorite.
Warm up and crisp afternoon with this naturally sweet bite. Slice an apple in half and cut out the core. In a small bowl mix some quick oats, butter and a touch of brown sugar. Spoon your mixture into the center of the apple and bake them for 30 minutes at 350 degrees. Feel free to experiment with the mixture: add honey, raisins, or cinnamon.
Photo via How Sweet Eats
Fruit & Nuts
Keep it simple with a sweet and salty, grab-and-go mix. You can make this as flavorful as you would like. Fill a bowl with your favorite nuts, or a mixture, and throw in dried fruit. Not sweet enough? Add dark chocolate chips! This is a fun snack that you can leave out on the table for little hands to nosh on all day.
Apples & Peanut Butter
Healthy and filling! Slice apples up and set them on a tray next to a bowl filled with Peanut Butter for dipping. If this doesn’t sound sugary enough for your little sweeties, add some honey to your peanut butter mixture. This is an option, you won’t need to fill bad about and your children will love.
Look, it’s the holidays! Indulging is part of all of the fun the season has to offer. But don’t undo the healthy efforts you’ve maintained throughout the rest of the year in a matter of just a month or two. Alternate between feasting on all the candied goodies and some naturally sweet and healthy options. Chances are, your kids won’t know the difference between the snacks and desserts that simply taste good and those that are actually good for them.
For all your other holiday fun, fuel up with these healthy options! This holiday you can give yourself the gift of getting an early start on your health-related New Year’s Resolutions.