blog

Happy New Year: Welcome 2015 As Your Best Self Yet

The last holiday party of the year is here and it’s time to ring in a New Year! Staying healthy and eating nutritious food during the holidays is challenging for anyone. Even if you’ve gotten off track this holiday season, pick yourself up and get back on track with these ideas for a healthy New Year’s celebration!

Low-Cal Cocktail Recipes

If alcohol will be part of your NYE party this year, try one or two of these recipes to keep the calories down.

Piña Colada (the average piña colada has more than 600 calories, but this recipe contains just 165 calories!)

  • 1 1/2 ounces coconut-flavored rum

  • 3 ounces pineapple juice

  • 4 ounces sparkling water

  • 1 tablespoon of Coco Lopez Cream of Coconut Lite (found in the drink mixers section of many supermarkets)

Pour ingredients over ice and stir.

Strawberry Citrus Vodka Mixer (259 calories)

  • 2 strawberries

  • 1 sprig of mint

  • 3/4 ounce light agave nectar, such as Wholesome Sweeteners

  • 1 3/4 ounces citrus vodka (for a non-alcoholic drink, swap vodka for a low-cal soda like Fresca)

  • 3/4 ounce lemon juice

In a shaker, muddle together mint and strawberries, then add the remaining ingredients. Shake vigorously with ice for 20 seconds. Pour entire contents of shaker into a tall glass.

Grapefruit Basil Martini (161 calories)

  • 2 basil leaves

  • 1 ounce grapefruit juice

  • 1 ounce Da Vinci’s Sugar Free Sweetener Syrup

  • 1 3/4 ounces gin

  • Splash of sparkling wine

In a shaker, muddle basil and syrup. Add syrup and gin and shake hard with ice for 20 seconds. Strain ingredients into a martini glass and top with sparkling wine. Garnish with a grapefruit twist.

The recipes above were published in FitnessMagazine.

Gluten-Free Hors D’Oeuvres

If you are hosting or have been asked to bring a snack to share, choose one (or a few) of these yummy gluten-free hors d’oeuvres.

Hot Crab Dip with Jalapenos and Scallions

Ingredients

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil

  • 4 scallions, thinly sliced

  • 2 jalapenos, ribs and seeds removed, minced

  • 2 garlic cloves, minced

  • ½ teaspoon smoked paprika

  • 1 pound lump crabmeat, picked over

  • 1/3 cup mayonnaise

  • 1/3 cup crème fraîche or sour cream

  • 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice

  • Dash cayenne

  • ¼ cup finely ground tortilla chips (see note)

For instructions and prep notes, click here.

Italian Baked Chicken Meatballs

Ingredients
• 1 1/4 pound ground dark meat chicken or turkey
• 1 extra large egg, beaten
• 2 tablespoons tomato paste
• 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
• ¼ cup finely chopped parsley
• 2 garlic cloves, minced
• 1 large shallot, minced
• 1 teaspoon sea salt
• ½ teaspoon smoked paprika
• ½ teaspoon red chili flakes
• 1/3 cup grated aged parmesan cheese
• ½ cup gluten-free oats
• 2 cups tomato sauce (preferably homemade)
For instructions and prep notes, click here.

Stuffed Mushrooms with “Creamed” Kale and Manchego

Ingredients
• 1 tablespoon unsalted butter or olive oil
• 1 large shallot, thinly sliced
• 1 large garlic clove, minced
• ¼ teaspoon red pepper flakes
• 1 teaspoon salt, divided
• 2 cups frozen kale
• ¼ cup white wine
• One 15-ounce can cannellini beans, rinsed and drained
• Olive oil
• 1 pound cremini mushrooms (about 20), brushed with a damp towel and stems removed
• 1/2 cup grated President Manchego cheese
For instructions and prep notes, click here.

Get Active with These Party Games

Need a few ideas to get the party started? Here are a couple party games that will get your guests moving (and burn a few calories in the process!)

Hula-Hoop Game
Divide guests into two or three even teams and give each team a hula-hoop. Each team should then line up side-by-side and hold hands. When you say “go,” each team must maneuver the hula-hoop down the line and back to the front of the line without letting go of each others hands.

Dance Party
Pop in a dance video game, or crank up the tunes for a group dance party. Better yet, have a contest to see who in the group can bust out the best moves.

Outdoor Game Ideas
Depending on the weather, take your guests outside and bring back some childhood memories with a game of Kick the Can or Capture the Flag.

Betty Murray, CN, HHC, RYT is a Certified Nutritionist & Holistic Health Counselor, founder of the Dallas-based integrative medical center, Wellness and founder of the Metabolic Blueprint wellness program. Betty’s nutrition counseling practice specializes in metabolic and digestive disorders and weight loss resistance. A master of the biochemistry of the body, Betty teaches her clients how to utilize nutritional interventions to improve their health. Betty is a member of the Institute of Functional Medicine and the National Association of Nutrition Professionals.