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On the sixth day of Christmas the dinner I made for ‘we,’ spaghetti squash boats, gluten free! With the amount of delicious meals made available during the holidays, it’s easy to gain weight and not consume enough vegetables. One of my favourite ways to address this issue, is to make healthy food substitutions without depriving myself of flavour. I often substitute grains (e.g. pasta, noodles) with various winter squash (e.g. spaghetti squash). Not only does this increase the vegetable, fibre, potassium and vitamin A intake, it reduces calories consumed thus leaving room for dessert. To minimize the “holiday weight gain” and associated guilt, below are some tips that I recommend to clients. Remember, every meal is an opportunity to eat healthy and reach your nutrition goals. Get ahead of the game – start your 2017 nutrition goals now. Happy holidays!


Holiday exchange

  • 1/2c mashed potatoes <-->1/2c mashed cauliflower (save approximately 150calories, 9g carbohydrates)

  • 1c cooked pasta <-->1c cooked squash ribbons (save approximately 100calories, 30g carbohydrates)

  • 1/2c breadcrumbs <--> 1/2c ground almonds (caloric content similar, save 30g carbohydrate )

  • 1 small slice (100g) of apple pie <--> 1 medium (150g) baked apple (save approximately 150 calories, 10g carbohydrates)

  • 2 small chocolate chip cookies <--> 3 medium dark chocolate dipped strawberries (save approximately 120 calories, 20g carbohydrates)

Chicken Taco Spaghetti Squash Boats

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