Elizabeth Lindsay, R.N.
The holidays are behind you, the new year has begun and you now are focusing on goals of improving your health. Then, oh no! It’s Valentine’s Day — a day that may sabotage all plans for health improvement.
Even if there isn’t a special someone, treats are all around. If the treats are there, we eat them. So what is a person to do? Have faith, all is not lost.
Here are some tips that may help you achieve your goals and enjoy Valentine’s Day.
- Celebrate American Heart Month in February:
- Go to exhibits, and take in free health demonstrations, presentations, cholesterol and blood pressure screenings, etc.
- Skip going to a restaurant:
- Avoid the 2,000-calorie entrée by preparing a leaner version of your favorite meal at home, and include large portions of fruits and vegetables.
- Make a healthier, yet delicious, dessert. See the Bavarian cream dessert recipe below.
- Prepare the meal with someone you enjoy, and have fun while you cook.
- Set the table with nice dishes, and include candles and music for a beautiful presentation
- Eat one or two dark chocolates, but decline a full box.
- Express interest in a gift that doesn’t include food, such as flowers or balloons.
- Start a new Valentine’s Day tradition. Instead of food-related activities, explore these physical activities:
- Cross-country or downhill skiing
- If you have a sweet tooth that needs satisfying:
- Grill fruit, such as bananas, peaches and pineapple. These fruits are great grilled and served with a dollop of fat-free whipped topping.
- Make a fresh fruit salad.
- Drizzle dark chocolate over fresh strawberries.
- Serve yogurt with fruit.
- Try some fruit that you’ve never tried before.
- See additional recipes and resources to help you lose the weight or maintain a healthy lifestyle.
- Last, but not least: Don’t forget the card!
Bavarian Cream Dessert
- 1 cup skim milk (may use 1 cup of water and vanilla shake powder)
- 1 1.4 ounce sugar-free vanilla instant pudding mix
- 1 cup vanilla sugar-free, low-fat yogurt
- 1 cup fat-free sour cream
- 1 can light cherry pie filling
- Fat-free or light whipped topping
Mix milk and pudding together. Add yogurt and sour cream. Add cherry pie filling, and top with whipped topping. Calories: 160 per cup