Fitting in Sweets
If you like sweets, one of the most tempting parts of the holidays is the dessert. It is important to remember that most sweets have a lot of carbohydrates in a small portion, so keep portion sizes small. The holidays are a special occasion, so you should enjoy a small serving of your favorite dessert. Just make sure you work it into your meal plan.
Eating high-sugar foods like cakes, candy, cookies, and pies will make blood glucose rise, so do not just add them to your diet. Instead, substitute small portions of these sweets for other carbohydrates already in your meal plan. For example, if you want a small serving of pumpkin pie, then pass on eating a dinner roll during the main course.
There are ways to revise many dessert recipes so they are healthier and still great-tasting. Many times, you can replace up to half of the sugar in a recipe with a sugar substitute. You can also try cutting down on sugar and increasing the use of cinnamon, nutmeg, vanilla, and other sweet-tasting spices and flavorings. Replace half of the fat in your recipe with applesauce or baby-food prunes when making chocolate brownies, cakes, or cookies.
These tricks will help you make your recipes a little bit healthier. However, you still must keep the portion small. Also, keep in mind that replacing fat with fruit ingredients increases the carbohydrate content.
Search for healthier versions of recipes using our Recipes for Healthy Living resource. When searching other places for recipes, pick recipes that give you the serving size and the number of carbs.
Desserts During the Holidays
Try these tips this holiday season. They can help you manage your sweet tooth when dessert is served:
- Decide ahead of time what and how much you will eat and how you will handle social pressure ("No thank you, I'm too full.").
- Share one portion of dessert with someone else, and scrap off any high-fat whipped-cream topping or extra frosting.
- Volunteer to bring your favorite low-sugar dessert to social functions. Some ideas are plain cookies, baked apples, or sugar-free puddings.
- Is there someone else at the party who is trying to watch what they eat? Avoid tempting sweets and ask them to join you for a walk while dessert is out on the table.
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