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Holiday Recipes That Are Good for Your Body and Your Mental Health

Shmuel Fischler, LCSW-C · December 17, 2020

While the holidays are an exciting time for many, they can also be quite stressful. Luckily, a thoughtful diet can boost our minds and our bodies during any time of year. We love enjoying cookie exchanges and delicious pies as much as anyone, but we recommend mixing in some of these healthy options with your holiday indulgence as well.

Best in Moderation

It may be hard to avoid certain food types during the holidays fully, but it’s certainly worth keeping them in moderation. Each of these foods and drinks is known to negatively impact mental health and physical health when consumed in unhealthy portions:

  • Sugar
  • Caffeine
  • Fatty foods
  • Alcohol

These recipes are low on the above ingredients and favor choices with healthy fats, probiotics, greens and other nutritional vitamins and minerals. Of course, these choices are beneficial for your body, but they also contain ingredients that can lead to noticeable mental health improvements.

Healthy Holiday Recipes

Butternut Squash and Black Bean Chili
A warm, hearty chili is the perfect meal for a cold winter evening. This particular chili doesn’t contain any meat, but the squash and avocado are undoubtedly welcome additions!

Mixed Green Salad with Cranberry Vinaigrette
Leafy greens are one of the most well-known brain-protective foods out there, and this meal is sure to provide plenty of them, in addition to several other healthy seasonal ingredients.

Miso Soup with Garlicky Lentils, Kale, and Mushrooms 
This is another plant-based meal that is sure to provide a boost of warmth and energy-packed with protein, fiber and perfect for eating throughout the week!

Slow-Cooker Mediterranean Stew
Stews are always a great choice around the holidays, and this one, in particular, should be heavy in your rotation. Low in calories and filled with plenty of veggies and fiber.

Coconut Macaroons with Bittersweet Chocolate and Pistachios
This tasty dessert is a gluten-free choice that is sure to please your crowd while still keeping sugar content low compared to other popular holiday dessert choices.

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