8 Great Ways To Make Easter Healthy

Image via: godairyfree.org

Image via: godairyfree.org

Easter is coming. And as the weekend of April 5th nears, dieters will start to panic.

Once those supermarket shelves are stacked sky-high with tasty Easter eggs, all we can think about is getting our next chocolate fix.

For a guilt-free Easter weekend, take the healthy option and enjoy time with friends and family without overindulging. It’s tough, but here are 8 tricks to help beat temptation.

Go To The Dark Side

High-cocoa dark chocolate (over 70 per cent) offers so much more nutritional value than milk varieties. Cocoa is one of the most powerful antioxidants on the planet, helping to protect against free radical damage and improve heart health.

Recent reports also show that medical researchers are doing all they can to make dark chocolate even more body-beneficial, with Ivan Petyaev of Cambridge University inventing his own recipe that offers a concentrated amount of antioxidants.

In addition to lowering blood pressure and improving blood flow, Patyaev has combined dark chocolate with additional anti-aging properties that are believed to leave the skin looking younger and firmer. According to Medical Daily, “just one 7.5-gram piece of the seemingly magic chocolate packs in more antioxidants than 100 grams of regular dark chocolate and 300 grams of Alaskan salmon.”

Now, we’re not advising you eat it by the bucket load this Easter, but dark chocolate is definitely a healthier substitute.

Make It Mini

According to research made by Ulster University, “one in three struggle with portion control.” To still have your cake (or chocolate egg) and eat it, make it mini.

If the thought of parting ways with your beloved chocolate seems impossible, shrink your portion size, focusing on the quality of the chocolate not the quantity. This way you can enjoy a treat guilt-free, without the extra calories. Nibble on a mini Lindt Gold Bunny – they’re only 55 calories a pop!

Earn Your Treats

Aside from Christmas, Easter is probably the most calorific time of the year. If you’re slimming down for summer, be mindful of what you’re eating over the bank holiday weekend. Listen to your body and be quite sure it’s hungry before you fill it with food.

Alternatively, earn your treats. According to Weight Loss Resources, the average Easter egg contains around 900- 1000 calories, which would take a 90-minute run at 6mph to burn off. If you’re treating yourself, do it guilt free by matching the calories you consume with sufficient exercise.

Rabbit Food

If there’s an Easter egg on the top shelf just beckoning to be devoured in one, stop! Instead, be the rabbit and reach for the carrot sticks. According to Dieticians Association of Australia, carrots are the best veg for curbing sugar cravings. Packed with nutrients, they’re an excellent choice of tummy filling fibre, at only 52 calories per cup (chopped).

Alternatively, if the idea of snacking on rabbit food makes you hopping mad, do as author of Read It Before You Eat It, nutritionist Bonnie Taub-Dix suggests and incorporate chocolate into your snacks by other, healthier means. For example, leave the giant choccy egg to one side and instead, heat up a delicious cup of low fat, skimmed hot chocolate. The milk’s protein content will fill you up, whilst also satisfying your chocolate craving.

Don’t Panic Buy, Panic Bake

If you’ve managed to successfully steer clear of the Easter whirlwind so far, try not to bulk buy at the last minute. Instead, take the homemade route and panic bake. Making your own treats from scratch still comes with calories, but strips away the preservatives, making it a far more healthier option.

Bring a personal touch to your Easter treats and reward friends with low-calorie, Easter cookies. Combine flour, baking powder, baking soda and a pinch of salt with a sugar and butter mix – throw in some vanilla extract for good measure. Roll out the dough until the thickness is just right, then cut your cookies into Easter-themed shapes. Bake at 180° till golden brown, cool and decorate away with piped icing. These come in at 90 calories per cookie – the perfect Easter snack.  

Go Hunting

Being a parent at Easter is hard. Your children are given Easter eggs left, right and centre, and someone has to eat them right? Rather than gorging in front of the TV, plan your own Easter egg hunt. This way, not only do you create an amazing adventure for the little ones, but you’ll also burn the extra calories.

A brisk walk alone can burn 100 – 200 calories in 30 minutes. Make it fun by adding children’s games; a 15-minute skip can burn around 120 calories. Hop scotching, bunny hops and jumping jacks can all burn approx. 100 calories in 15 minutes. All that exercise will soon make you forget about the chocolate.

Save It For Dessert

We’re all aware of the damaging effects sugar can have on our body, and Easter is full of the stuff. Just recently, the World Health Organization released new guidelines advising people to “slash their sugar intake to just six to 12 teaspoons per day… in order to reduce the risk of obesity and tooth decay.”

To help cut down at Easter, naturopath Tim Altman recommends that we save the chocolate specifically for dessert. Speaking to Body + Soul, he said “eating Easter eggs on an empty stomach will spike blood sugar levels and put you on a hunger and energy level roller coaster.” Fill-up on a hearty, fibre filled meal before reaching for your Easter eggs, avoid ‘grazing’ through the day and don’t skip meals to compensate for the extra Easter calories.

Take A Walk

Don’t be tempted to sit in and binge on chocolate over the bank holiday weekend. If you feel the urge to overeat, take a 15-minute walk says the University of Innsbruck in Austria. According to a recent study, they found that a 15-minute brisk walk is the only distraction you need to curb those pesky sugar cravings. Exercise helps reduce stress and counteract the urges we have to overindulge, so embrace the great outdoors this spring.

Recent reports also show that medical researchers are doing all they can to make dark chocolate even more body-beneficial, with Ivan Petyaev of Cambridge University inventing his own recipe that offers a concentrated amount of antioxidants.

In addition to lowering blood pressure and improving blood flow, Patyaev has combined dark chocolate with additional anti-aging properties that are believed to leave the skin looking younger and firmer. According to Medical Daily, “just one 7.5-gram piece of the seemingly magic chocolate packs in more antioxidants than 100 grams of regular dark chocolate and 300 grams of Alaskan salmon.”

Now, we’re not advising you eat it by the bucket load this Easter, but dark chocolate is definitely a healthier substitute.

Make It Mini

According to research made by Ulster University, “one in three struggle with portion control.” To still have your cake (or chocolate egg) and eat it, make it mini.

If the thought of parting ways with your beloved chocolate seems impossible, shrink your portion size, focusing on the quality of the chocolate not the quantity. This way you can enjoy a treat guilt-free, without the extra calories. Nibble on a mini Lindt Gold Bunny – they’re only 55 calories a pop!

Earn Your Treats

Aside from Christmas, Easter is probably the most calorific time of the year. If you’re slimming down for summer, be mindful of what you’re eating over the bank holiday weekend. Listen to your body and be quite sure it’s hungry before you fill it with food.

Alternatively, earn your treats. According to Weight Loss Resources, the average Easter egg contains around 900- 1000 calories, which would take a 90-minute run at 6mph to burn off. If you’re treating yourself, do it guilt free by matching the calories you consume with sufficient exercise.

Rabbit Food

If there’s an Easter egg on the top shelf just beckoning to be devoured in one, stop! Instead, be the rabbit and reach for the carrot sticks. According to Dieticians Association of Australia, carrots are the best veg for curbing sugar cravings. Packed with nutrients, they’re an excellent choice of tummy filling fibre, at only 52 calories per cup (chopped).

Alternatively, if the idea of snacking on rabbit food makes you hopping mad, do as author of Read It Before You Eat It, nutritionist Bonnie Taub-Dix suggests and incorporate chocolate into your snacks by other, healthier means. For example, leave the giant choccy egg to one side and instead, heat up a delicious cup of low fat, skimmed hot chocolate. The milk’s protein content will fill you up, whilst also satisfying your chocolate craving.

Don’t Panic Buy, Panic Bake

If you’ve managed to successfully steer clear of the Easter whirlwind so far, try not to bulk buy at the last minute. Instead, take the homemade route and panic bake. Making your own treats from scratch still comes with calories, but strips away the preservatives, making it a far more healthier option.

Bring a personal touch to your Easter treats and reward friends with low-calorie, Easter cookies. Combine flour, baking powder, baking soda and a pinch of salt with a sugar and butter mix – throw in some vanilla extract for good measure. Roll out the dough until the thickness is just right, then cut your cookies into Easter-themed shapes. Bake at 180° till golden brown, cool and decorate away with piped icing. These come in at 90 calories per cookie – the perfect Easter snack.  

Go Hunting

Being a parent at Easter is hard. Your children are given Easter eggs left, right and centre, and someone has to eat them right? Rather than gorging in front of the TV, plan your own Easter egg hunt. This way, not only do you create an amazing adventure for the little ones, but you’ll also burn the extra calories.

A brisk walk alone can burn 100 – 200 calories in 30 minutes. Make it fun by adding children’s games; a 15-minute skip can burn around 120 calories. Hop scotching, bunny hops and jumping jacks can all burn approx. 100 calories in 15 minutes. All that exercise will soon make you forget about the chocolate.

Save It For Dessert

We’re all aware of the damaging effects sugar can have on our body, and Easter is full of the stuff. Just recently, the World Health Organization released new guidelines advising people to “slash their sugar intake to just six to 12 teaspoons per day… in order to reduce the risk of obesity and tooth decay.”

To help cut down at Easter, naturopath Tim Altman recommends that we save the chocolate specifically for dessert. Speaking to Body + Soul, he said “eating Easter eggs on an empty stomach will spike blood sugar levels and put you on a hunger and energy level roller coaster.” Fill-up on a hearty, fibre filled meal before reaching for your Easter eggs, avoid ‘grazing’ through the day and don’t skip meals to compensate for the extra Easter calories.

Take A Walk

Don’t be tempted to sit in and binge on chocolate over the bank holiday weekend. If you feel the urge to overeat, take a 15-minute walk says the University of Innsbruck in Austria. According to a recent study, they found that a 15-minute brisk walk is the only distraction you need to curb those pesky sugar cravings. Exercise helps reduce stress and counteract the urges we have to overindulge, so embrace the great outdoors this spring.