Don't spend February 15th wallowing in the regret of a Valentine's Day filled with sugar. Make smart choices while you prepare your menu for the evening.
Just when you thought the holidays and all their temptations were behind you, Valentine's Day comes racing around the corner. Are you planning a quiet evening at home with someone special? You don't need to throw your diet out the window while you prepare the perfect meal. Here are some ideas for a heart-healthy Valentine's menu.
To avoid overeating, keep your appetizers light and nutritious. Try to make vegetables your primary ingredient. A homemade guacamole dip with carrot sticks, a salad with a fat-free dressing, or a vegetable soup made with low-sodium broth could all be ideas to begin your meal.
If you're looking for something high in protein and low in cholesterol, fish will always be your best bet. The omega-3 fatty acids found in most fish lowers the risk of heart disease and improves blood flow and brain functioning.
While preparing a fish entree, keep in mind that some approaches, such as frying, will negate many of the health benefits. Instead, try baking, grilling, steaming, or broiling. Don't forget to add a little extra flavor with herbs, lemon juice, onions, or peppers.
Make sure you're getting plenty of fiber from your side dishes by cooking with brown rice, beans, or grilled vegetables. Dinner rolls should be prepared with whole wheat flour instead of white.
The healthiest sweets will always be fruits, such as a bowl of strawberries, raspberries, and blueberries. It also won't hurt to enjoying a small piece of dark chocolate, yogurt-covered raisins, or a few candies with almonds or other nuts that will satisfy your craving and also provide some nutrients.