It’s game day! With football/baseball playoff/insert your favorite sport here in full swing, finding healthy meals and snacks can be a challenge.
Believe it or not, there were years where I actually used to avoid these kinds of activities. I used to think if I went to my friend’s super bowl party or happy hour that I would be forced to eat unhealthy food. But over time, I learned a few simple and effortless tricks in the kitchen and during these social situations so I could have fun while also sticking to my health and wellness goals. Case in point, today’s recipe.
Today’s recipe is all about taking the creamy decadence of a game day favorite like spinach and artichoke dip and transforming it into something you could eat almost every day. I don’t know about you, but if it’s one thing I love it’s a good dip. I realize I sound a complete fathead when I say this, but it’s true. And done the right way, a healthy veggie (or even fruit) dip is a awesome way to encourage fresh fruit and vegetable consumption. As long as the dip you’re making it low in fat, reasonable in calories, and uses minimally processed ingredients, you’ll be good to go.
Other Ways to Make Game Day Healthy
- Go easy on the booze—Usually, it’s not the food on game day that can keep you from reaching your health goals; it’s the alcohol. Whether your poison is starchy beer or a sugar-laden cocktail, the calories and sugar in these beverages can add up pretty quickly. Opt for water, club soda, or other low-sugar alternatives.
- Bring a healthy dish that everyone can enjoy—If you’re concerned that there won’t be any healthy options at the party you’re going to, what’s stopping you from bringing something healthy yourself? Whether it’s a festive salad, a chicken dish, or a healthy dessert, you have tons of options. I usually recommend something that is vegetable based. Chances are, most of these parties have some sort of healthy protein options. But they might be seriously lacking in greens and veggies. A salad and some pulled pork (sans bread) is a balanced, if not ideal meal in this case.
- Munch during commercials—it’s easy to want to eat all day at a game day party. You’re sitting on the couch, lounging, sipping on a beer, eating nachos, etc. for a good 2-3 hours at least. Try to get into a habit of not eating during actual game play, and save munching on your snacks for the commercials. This will help you pace yourself during the party and keep you from overindulging.
- Make yourself ONE plate, then call it a day—Do you have a bad habit of sneaking back to the snack table for ‘just one more’ chip, buffalo wing, or cupcake? If so, you need to stop this habit now! I get it that all of these foods are delicious, but there’s no need to be eating seconds and thirds of these foods. That’s why I usually advise clients to take a go around the buffet, fill your plate, enjoy your plate, and call it a day.
- Bring my spinach dip—Okay, so this last one is just me being silly. But this dip is actually pretty amazing if I don’t say so myself. It’s easy to make, doesn’t require a ton of fancy ingredients, and is minimally processed. The secret to this dip is using plain yogurt instead of mayonnaise or sour cream which are often high in calories and fat.
Interested in this recipe? Give it a try and let me know how yummy you think it is. Happy eats!