Healthy Entertaining for Football Season

IMG_0814Now that football season is upon us, we often find ourselves sitting with our friends and families sharing our favorite football snacks along with game. We often find greasy, fatty and processed snacks served during the football season. Football season does NOT mean off-season with a healthy lifestyle. On average, football fans find themselves gaining about 10 pounds during the season. Gaining 10 pounds per year leads to a huge increased risk of an early mortality.

Follow these simple tips to help avoid putting on the pounds:

Be aware of what you are eating and how much. When you’re a guest in someone’s home, I don’t mean to never indulge in foods that you have grown to love but be conscious of what you are eating. If you truly love chicken wings, then enjoy a serving size of three wings and fill up on other nutritious foods.

Try not to over snack. There are usually endless spreads of snacks at tailgates and football parties, including chips, pretzels, cookies that are very low in nutrition and high on calories. When going to someone else’s home especially, offer to bring something that you know you can eat like a fresh veggie platter for example.

When it comes to alcoholic beverages, it is best to abstain altogether. Not only does any alcohol, in any amount increase the risk of stroke two times fold, that of a non-drinker but it can also be challenging for those with weight management issues and/or diabetes management. Not only the adverse effects of alcohol just mentioned but it can also lead to poor decision making when it comes to diet. Alcoholic beverages are high in calories and they add up quickly.

There are many ways to put a healthy spin on your tailgate or watching the game. The biggest thing to remember is that the food is only a portion of the fun to be had. Try to make football season remain an active season. Get up and walk around during the game, throw a football with your friends or the kids before the game or during half-time. Lastly, remember that if you do overeat for one meal, just go back to eating healthy the next meal. Try not to sabotage the entire day if you overindulged at one meal.

Here’s a favorite football snacks to serve:

Asian Grilled Chicken Skewers

Ingredients:

  • 1 pound (2) boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut in 1″ cubes
  • 1/4 cup low sodium or gluten-free soy sauce
  • 1/4 cup unsweetened apple sauce
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped yellow onion
  • 1 tsp sesame oil
  • 1 tsp grated ginger
  • 1 tbsp light brown sugar
  • 2 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 1 teaspoon red pepper flakes (optional)
  • 1 teaspoon sesame seeds, plus more for topping
  • 2 thinly sliced scallions, white and green parts

 

Directions:

  1. Cut the chicken breast into 1” cubes.
  2. Place the chicken breasts, in a Ziploc bag with the marinade. Allow to rest in the refrigerator for 4 hours to overnight.
  3. Skewer the chicken onto wooden skewers and grill until no longer pink.
  4. Sprinkle the sesame seeds on top and serve hot. Enjoy.
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