It’s that time of year again: wings, nachos, some version of a smoked meat, chips, dip…not to mention the many fizzy beverage options! Why does this splurge-fest have to sneak up on us so soon after making our resolutions to be fit & healthy?! The good news is you can participate in this fun social event while still eating foods you love without totally abandoning your nutrition plan. Here are some tips to help you tackle Super Bowl parties while staying consistent with your health goals:
1) Keep food in the kitchen instead of the living room. The more out-of-reach it is, the less likely you are to continue to graze during the game. And hey, who wants to miss the commercials to get up for more food? They are the best part!
2) Have small bowls (1/2 cup or so) with salsa, dips in them and have small baskets or bowls with approximately 30 tortilla chips in them: perfect for 2 people to share!
3) Have a pitcher or bottles of water available to grab instead of having additional beers or other high-calorie alcoholic beverages – water will keep you hydrated while also keeping you busy to avoid reaching for more snacks!
4) FIBER! Fiber provides fullness, so choose high-fiber foods for your Super Bowl spread. For example:
- Fresh veggies: try this awesome Greek yogurt dip for less fat and more satisfying protein!
Finally, what’s a Super Bowl party without wings? Intercept those high-fat, greasy wings and replace with these light and crispy delicious alternatives:
2 pounds chicken wings, split at the joint
1/4 cup cayenne pepper sauce (for example: Frank’s Red Hot)
Place wings into a large pot and fill the pot with cold water to cover the wings by 2 inches. Bring to a boil, and boil for 10 minutes. While chicken is boiling heat your broiler to HIGH. When done, drain and place chicken wings on rimmed cookie sheet.
Broil 6 inches from element or flame for 5 to 6 minutes per side. The skin should blister and brown. You are just trying to get that CRUNCH texture added to the wings.
Drizzle with reserved sauce. At this point you can toss them to make a covered wing or leave a bit uncovered for less messy eating.
For 4-5 chicken wings = 240 calories, 12 g fat, 4 g carbohydrates, 27 g protein, 1 g fiber
Maren Wolsky, R.D., is a Heathly Eating Coach at Family Wellness in Fargo, North Dakota. She helps create individual nutrition strategies for a variety of heath goals.