When it’s time for kickoff this Sunday, make sure your Super Bowl party is fueled with eats that will keep you healthy, happy and geared to go.
Dr. Keith Kantor, an advocate of natural food and healthy living, gave us his favorite gluten-free dishes for the Super Bowl. Kantor is a leading nutritionist, author of What Matters: Leadership Values That Just Might Save America, and the CEO of Service Foods, Inc., which provides all-natural foods and nutrition resources to clients across the U.S.
For an easy appetizer, he suggested Asian-inspired meatballs made with fresh ginger and tamari. Swap a fattening dip for this simple guacamole recipe paired with fresh-cut veggies. Chili is rich with spice and protein, the perfect complement to gluten-free corn tortilla chips. And for the main dish, sauté all-natural steak or chicken with chopped onions, peppers and baby tomatoes and serve on skewers for fork-free kabobs.
But before you dig in, keep in mind Kantor’s top tips for staying healthy on game day.
1. Stay active the day of the big game. “Football players on the field are the only ones who are active during the game,” Kantor says. “Grab a workout in the morning, play with your kids outside, walk your dog around your neighborhood, deep clean part of your house and avoid sitting around before the game. The extra activity will keep your metabolic rate higher than normal.”
2. Don’t skip a meal. “Showing up to a party starving is only asking for trouble. You will end up eating double or triple the amount of snacks that you would if you were not starving,” Kantor says. Opt to bring a healthy dish to the party, like the veggie and guacamole tray above. Which brings us to…
3. Go for the veggies. If you find yourself grazing out of boredom, veggies are the perfect solution. “Veggies take a longer time to eat and chew, and will not break the bank in terms of calories, fat or processed ingredients,” Kantor says. “The extra water and fiber in the veggies can also keep you feeling fuller, giving you more self-control with the not-so-healthy items at the party.”
4. Avoid excessive alcohol. “Alternate alcoholic drinks with a large glass of water and commit to stopping after one or two drinks. Alcohol in general can promote increased appetite and release inhibition, causing you to eat excessively. If you do drink, go for a low-sugar drink like a spritzer, wine or light gluten-free beer,” Kantor advises.
5. Ditch the processed starches. Packaged and fried foods will likely “send your energy and blood sugars on a wild roller coaster,” Kantor says, often leading to “excessive consumption of calories” that will ultimately turn to fat. Instead, load up on vegetables, high-protein foods and healthy fats like nuts, cheese and guacamole.
6. Avoid the peer pressure to finish everything. “It’s OK to throw away the remainder of the chips or potato skins,” he says. “The ‘clean up call’ by the host is not great for the waistline, [and] you could consume upwards of 1,000 calories by finishing up the snacks.”
Check out our Super Bowl Pinterest board for more delicious (and admittedly more indulgent) ideas.