Believe it or not, the holiday season is one of the most stressful times of the year for people. You may be feeling that stress now as Hannukkah is in full swing and Christmas is fast approaching. If you're feeling the season of stress you may turn to comfort food to help so I'm here to give you a few ideas to incorporate healthy comfort foods into your holidays this year to help ease that stress, keep your immune system in good shape, and give you plenty of mental energy.
Warm Spiced Oatmeal
1/2 cup rolled oats
1 cup water (sub your favorite milk for creamier oatmeal)
pinch of salt
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp nutmeg
1/4 tsp ginger
1/4 cup yogurt (non-dairy is great too)
1/4 cup chopped apples
1 tsp pumpkin seeds
1 tsp chopped pecans
3 TBSP pomegranate seeds
optional: a little drizzle of honey if you need some extra sweetness
Cook oatmeal according to the package. Stir in spices and top with yogurt, apples, pomegranate, pecans, and pumpkin seeds! Enjoy!
This dish is a great way to start your day off right and the warmth of the oats and the comfort of the h9oliday flavors will leave you feeling relaxed, refreshed, and ready to take on the day! Oats are high in fiber and are great for your gut microbiome. These holiday spices are full of antioxidants that are good for your brain and your whole body, especially when you're stressed out. The quercetin in apples will help your brain stay in tip-top shape. Polyphenols from pomegranates are great for your memory. Lastly, the nuts and seeds will help keep your immune system primed with zinc.
More Healthy Holiday Comfort Food Ideas
If you need more holiday comfort food for your immune system make sure to eat your favorite citrus fruits, nuts and seeds, and mushrooms!
Fruit salad as a side dish or dessert
Add nuts and seeds to your oatmeal, yogurt, or smoothie in the morning
Replace half of your meat with mushrooms
For some relaxation and mood-boosting effects reach for foods like turkey, yogurt, and bright orange foods like carrots, squash, and sweet potato.
Choosing turkey when making sandwiches
Eat yogurt for breakfast or snacks
Snack on carrots
Roast sweet potatoes as a side dish to any meal
Make a squash soup (check out my recipe for Kabocha Squash soup)
If you need some mental energy and brain support apples, pomegranates, and seasonal spices will be your best friend!
Add apples to your oatmeal for breakfast
Top your desserts and yogurt with pomegranate seeds
Enjoy all of the cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, and cloves by adding them to practically anything!