Game almost over. The opponents have the football on your 2 yard line. You lead by 5 points, but they have the chance to take the lead from you with a short run or pass. The ball is hiked – and they fumble it! You snatch up the ball and sprint all the way down the field for a touchdown. That there was a 14 point swing my friends, and where only seconds ago you were fighting for your life you are now fully in command of a blowout!
Why don’t we take this dramatic little vignette and apply it to the dinner table? How can we take our weakest dietary link and turn it completely around – making it our strongest habit? How can we give ourselves that 14 point turnaround? Here’s one simple way.
People try valiantly to ensure that their entrees and side dishes are at least moderately healthy (with varied success) but for many it is the treat after the meal that sinks them. A caloric tsunami ready to drown out all their noble intentions. But Desserts are not naturally unhealthy, in fact nature has instilled our craving of them for a legitimate reason. It provides a lot that the meals omits.
You’ve gotten all your protein, fat and calorie needs with the meal, but you might still be short on your vitamin and mineral requirements. Fruits and vegetables are the best source of that. But if you opt for a typical starch-based dessert such as cookies, pastry or maybe ice cream, you probably won’t be too successful right? People often habitually reach for these, they might be the only thing associated with dessert, but that is a problem easily alleviated.
Take a look at the selection in the picture above. The blackberries, dark chocolate covered almonds, pomegranate and grapes have some of the highest antioxidant levels of any food, they also contain other beneficial phytonutrients to help in your weight control, and equally important - if you give them a chance you find that they are just as satisfying as any other dessert choice. And here is the key to your success. We don’t usually think of these delights when we’re out grocery shopping, our habits usually kick in instead and we reach for those cookies, pies, ice cream or candy. If you can make it a point to grab the good stuff instead, and its the only thing available after the meal – voila! You’ve successfully extracted that painful sweet tooth! And it might come almost as a shock that they actually taste better than what we’re used to having. Here is another case of mind over platter. Smart dieting. Taming that subtle dietary killer. Why not give it a try!