Add These Ingredients to Your Holiday Shopping List

Delicious roasted turkey with savory vegetable side dishes in a fall theme.The holidays don’t have the best reputation from a health perspective. Rich tourtiere, cakes, panettone, and other seasonal specialties are calorically dense and don’t exactly offer a ton of nutritional value.

But hey, it’s once a year!


Of course, not all holiday food is “bad” for you. Much of it is nutrient-dense and can easily fall into the “superfood” category. How it gets cooked, however, is where nutritional degradation takes place.

Adding cups of sugar, pounds of butter, or dropping your turkey in a deep fryer can add a ton of calories and subtract the value from holiday foods.

You’re not going to be able to make your cakes and cookies “healthy.” Instead, focus on certain holiday staples in a way to help maximize nutrition.

Brussels Sprouts

Brussels sprouts are a great source of folic acid, potassium, fiber, vitamin C, and compounds that help protect your liver. These nutrients help in a variety of ways like:

  • Healing wounds
  • Heart health
  • Protecting cells from harmful free radicals
  • Limiting inflammation
  • Immune health

You can drizzle with olive oil and roast for about 30 minutes, or boil or steam for a few minutes.


Clementines are a holiday staple and serve as an excellent substitute for sweet baked goods when cravings hit. Rich in vitamin C and other antioxidants, this healthy snack can also be added to savory dishes throughout the holidays.

Roast Turkey


Turkey is extremely healthful when it’s not deep-fried or draped in pounds of butter. This year, use less butter and more seasonings and try to avoid the skin. Turkey is an excellent source of:

  • Protein
  • Vitamin B6 and B12
  • Potassium
  • Zing
  • Niacin


Chestnuts are a great source of healthy fats and fiber to help reduce “bad” cholesterol, encourage better digestion, and promote heart health. Sprinkle over Brussels sprouts, salads, or add to stuffing.

These are just four foods that, when cooked properly, can add a lot of nutritional value to help you feel your best during the holidays. Look for opportunities to snack smart and cook healthy to fill the space between holiday baking.

Author Bio

Mohan Garikiparithi got his degree in medicine from Osmania University (University of Health Sciences). He practiced clinical medicine for over a decade before he shifted his focus to the field of health communications. During his active practice he served as the head of the Dept. of Microbiology in a diagnostic centre in India. On a three-year communications program in Germany, Mohan developed a keen interest in German Medicine (Homoeopathy), and other alternative systems of medicine. He now advocates treating different medical conditions without the use of traditional drugs. An ardent squash player, Mohan believes in the importance of fitness and wellness.