Healthy Food Swaps This Holiday Season

The holidays are approaching, and that means holiday food! But piling your plate high with holiday treats can hinder any weight loss progress you’ve made during the year in personal training. 

Luckily, there are ways to still enjoy all the holiday festivities without completely undoing all your hard work! Just swap out a few holiday favorites for healthier options. Here are a few ideas to keep your weight loss journey going during the holidays.

Green Bean Casserole

Green bean casserole is a staple at any Thanksgiving or Christmas dinner. But, green bean casserole is loaded with fat and calories thanks to the creamy soup used and the fried onion topping. 

Prevention Magazine suggests swapping out this vegetable side dish for another version: green bean almondine. This healthy dish keeps green beans as its base but swaps out bad fats for healthy fats by incorporating sliced almonds as the topper. And a bonus — almonds are also high in nutrients, like protein and Vitamins E and B.  


Turkey is often the heart of any holiday meal. While it’s true that turkey is a good source of protein, it can often contain hidden sources of fat. But, the fat content in turkey ratchets up when you leave the skin on. Also, dark meat has more fat content than a turkey breast — about twice as much! 

When it’s your turn to take some turkey this year, opt for the skinless turkey breast pieces. You will still get the flavor without all the fat. 

Mashed Potatoes

They’re creamy and buttery and the perfect accompaniment to the holiday meal, but mashed potatoes are often high in fat due to the amount of butter, milk, and sour cream used to make them. To make these more weight loss friendly, we suggest swapping out the milk or sour cream for Greek yogurt. 

Greek yogurt has roughly the same consistency as sour cream but has less fat and more protein. Hint: you can also replace sour cream with Greek yogurt in several other dishes like sauces, dips, and casseroles. 


You either love it or hate it. But just one glass of eggnog is chock full of calories and will provide more than half of your recommended daily fat intake. That’s because eggnog is filled with alcohol, milk, and sugar. 

If you’re not a fan of eggnog, reaching for a glass of apple cider instead is an easy swap. Or you might consider a lower-calorie alcoholic drink, like club soda and wine (wine spritzer!) or club soda and vodka. If you must have eggnog, try to make your own nog alternative with healthier ingredients.

The Skinny

Swapping out just a few foods and drinks this holiday season can do wonders for keeping you on your weight loss journey. Consciously choosing which foods to splurge on and which ones to pass on will save you hundreds of calories while still allowing you to partake in all the festivities. Your waistline will thank you in the new year!