As preparations for Super Bowl Sunday commence, you may be wondering how your upcoming football fiestas will contribute to the post-holiday weight loss plan you drew up on January 2nd. You’ve been faithful to your diet since you packed on a few lbs with an abundance of Christmas cookies and egg nog, but now you will be faced with temptation. In the form of dips and the fried things you stick in them.
As someone that has never been able to look the other way when there are snacks on the table (and feel a constant urge to reach out my hand and grab a few them all), I have come up with some healthier options to help you stay slim and satisfied at the same time.
What not to make/eat: Grandma’s Seven Layer Mexican Chip Dip
Weve all sampled this delicious partner to the trusty Tostito. Made with one layer each of refried beans, sour cream, guacamole, cheese, salsa, olives and lettuce, you’re bound to gobble up hundreds of calories. Add tortilla chips or tacos to the mix and you’ll really be in trouble. Plus, it’s so good that you know you won´t stop eating after just a few bites.
What to make/eat instead: If you can´t kick your craving for something creamy, substitute a low-fat dressing (Ken´s brand Light Caesar and Ranch are two of my personal favorites) for the dip and fill a bowl with veggies instead of chips. If you can´t go the vegetable route (because the guys won’t stop making fun of you), buy low-fat Wheat Thins, Triscuits, or pita chips instead of the greasy Tostitos.
What not to make/eat: Mozzarella sticks, fried chicken wings, mini hot dogs (aka Pigs in a Blanket), French fries, or any other member of the fried ‘n oily family. In addition to being unhealthy, these foods are usually so small that you eat 20 of them before realizing that you have just descended into a pit of fat.
What to make/eat instead: Bruschetta is a great bite-sized substitute for the culprits listed above. Because it´s made with toast, you still get the crunch factor while eliminating tons of fat. The topping can be made in a snap by combining garlic, cucumber, tomatoes, onion, salt, pepper, olive oil, and vinegar. Drizzling your mini toasts with olive oil before baking will also add a lot of flavor. There are also tons of healthy alternatives to the typical Super Bowl fare, like baked buffalo wings or fries.
And for the drinks…
Everyone knows that alcohol is caloric, especially when downing multiple glasses of sugary margaritas, mojitos and Long Island Iced Teas. If you can´t get the party started without something to wet your whistle, however, look for Michelob Ultra: this beer only has 95 calories and 2.5 grams of those dreaded carbohydrates per bottle. And if beer isn’t your thing, mix yourself a little vodka soda for only about 70 calories.
In the end, no one will stop you from adding to your unfortunate holiday weight gain by downing unhealthy snacks during the Big Game. It’s all you. But, if you can’t commit to these healthy alternatives, try eating a handful of roasted almonds, dried fruit, or a few rice cakes before walking out the door. This will ensure that you’re not starving when you arrive at your friend’s house, and hopefully prevent you from gorging on barbecue chicken wings before the first quarter even starts.