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Super Foods for the Holidays

I would like to welcome Katie Mulligan as a new contributer to Kidoinfo. She is a registered dietitian specializing in pediatrics. Through her practice, Nurturing Nutrition, Katie provides individualized nutrition counseling to children (ages birth to 18) and their families. This month she tells us which foods are super (super delicious and super healthy) during the holidays.


The holidays are a time of sharing and giving, especially the gift of food. If any part of your holiday tradition involves cooking or eating, treat yourself and your guests to an extra helping of holiday super foods this season! Super foods have been so named because of their super antioxidant capabilities and their amazing health benefits. What better gift to give than a long, healthy life this holiday season?

10 Super Foods for the Holidays
adapted from Center for Science in the Public Interest (CSPI)

1. Apple and Pears. Rich in vitamins, fiber and phytochemicals – amazing disease prevention food components that give fruit their color. They are perfect for holiday desserts and fruit bowls. I love thinly sliced D’Anjou pears drizzled with honey and candied walnuts for an after dinner treat.
2. Brussels Sprouts and Turnips. These and other related vegetables like cabbage, cauliflower and bok choy are tasty and nutritious!
3. Dark chocolate. Treat yourself and someone you love to a small amount of dark chocolate. Buy at least 60% cacao dark chocolate for a delicious heart healthy treat!
4. Carrots. Low cost and a family favorite. These vitamin-A-rich veggies can be served hot or cold and are always a crowd pleaser.
5. Beans: Dried or Green. Dried beans are low in cost, low in fat, and rich in protein, iron, folic acid, and fiber. Whip up some hummus or black bean and olive tapenade. Green beans are healthy and popular at holiday tables.
6. Citrus fruits. Always available, great tasting, and rich in vitamin C, folic acid, and fiber. Enjoy some clementines this holiday season!
7. Cranberries. Full of antioxidants like vitamins C and E, these colorful berries are sure to keep you and yours healthy during the holidays.
8. Pumpkin and Winter Squash. Very nutritious and delicious, rich in vitamin A and fiber. These superstars of super foods are good for the eyes, skin and hair — to keep you bright and shining throughout the hectic season.
9. Nuts. Don’t you just love that nuts made the list? Full of heart-healthy fats, protein and antioxidants, such as vitamin E, you have every reason to go nuts!
10. Turkey. High in protein and folic acid but low in fat and cholesterol. This holiday dinner centerpiece is a family favorite.

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