Simple changes to help avoid those holiday pounds!
The holidays are almost here, complete with the seasonal indulgences of cakes, cookies and all of the trimmings. While many health-conscious people take notice of how many calories they are taking in while eating these foods, few people stop to consider what they are drinking. Holiday cocktails such as egg nog, hot chocolate and spiced cider are some of the biggest culprits of extra – and almost hidden – calories during the holiday season. Before you put down your drink for something less flavorful, try some of these small changes that can make a big difference in preventing those holiday pounds.
Hot Chocolate with Irish Cream
Hot chocolate is one of the more traditional cold-weather drinks around. When mixed with whole milk and Irish cream on the holidays, it can add up to more than 375 calories. Try cutting those calories in half by using skim milk and coffee in your recipe instead of whole milk, leaving room for the extra calories from the Irish cream.
1/2 cup skim milk
½ cup coffee
1 packet hot chocolate mix
1 shot Irish Cream
- Brew coffee
- Mix 1 packet of hot chocolate mix and skim milk in a saucepan until lightly simmering
- Add ½ cup coffee and pour into mug or cup
- Stir in 1 shot of Irish cream to finish
Another holiday favorite, one cup of egg nog can add up to about 350 calories, depending on your recipe. Try this egg nog recipe to cut the calories and keep the flavor this holiday season.
4 eggs (or egg beaters, to reduce even more calories)
1 pt skim milk
1 cup light cream
3-5 oz bourbon
1/3 cups sugar
1-2 tsp nutmeg
- Separate eggs
- Add all ingredients plus egg yolks (omitting the whites) together and mix
- Beat egg whites separately, then whisk them into the mixture.
- Enjoy 1 cup servings
Sparkling Cranberry Cocktail (Non-Alcoholic)
Sparkling juice drinks can be a great alternative to alcoholic holiday beverages. Try to stick with 100% juices to avoid added sugars, and use sparkling water or seltzer instead of soda to add carbonation. Don’t hesitate to garnish your sparkling juices with sprigs of mint and cinnamon sticks.
2 oz. red 100% cranberry juice
2 oz. white 100% cranberry juice
4 oz. lemon-lime seltzer or sparkling water
- Mix all of the ingredients together and enjoy.
Hot & Spiced Apple Cider
Spiced apple cider is a traditional holiday favorite, complete with the apples and cinnamon smell that fills the room with holiday spirit. Cut down this drink by as much as 100-200 calories by omitting alcohol and sticking with no-added sugar brands of cider.
4 cups apple cider
3-4 cinnamon sticks
6-8 cloves, whole
- Just bring these ingredients to a boil and cool until at a drinkable temperature.
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