7 Ways to Satisfy your Sweet Tooth in 2018
I have to admit it. I’m a dietitian and I LOVE sweets. Yep. I said it. Sweets and dietitian in the same sentence. The secret is out. Offer me chips, fried foods, salty snacks and I’ll turn ya down, BUT place a cookie in front of me and you have a new best freind. Candy, cookies, you name it. There’s a reason why I can’t keep that stuff in the house. Portion control is tricky!
As a Registered Dietitian, I’ve been fortunate to research and learn about the effects of sugar on the body. Over the years, this knowledge has helped curb my appetite for sugar. There are still some days, however, that I crave a sweet treat. Luckily, it possible to get your fix in ways other than candy or cookies, which can be loaded with saturated fats and added sugars. Fruit is one of my favorite ways to curb a sweet craving. Fruit is made up of 100% natural sugars, meaning there are no added sugars. In addition, fruits are loaded with vitamins and minerals. WIN-WIN situation. I’ve found that heating fruit up in the microwave can often create a sweeter flavor.
Here’s a list of healthier ways to satisfy your sweet tooth this New Year’s:
- 3 Minute Apple Pie
Slice an apple into 8 wedges, using an apple slicer or knife. Sprinkle with cinnamon and any other desired spices (apple pie spice, nutmeg). Microwave on high for 3 minutes or until tender. The sugar from the heated apple provides extra sweetness without requiring additional sugar.
- Fresh fruit with Dark chocolate (70% cacao or more).
Combine strawberries, blueberries or your other favorite fruit with a 1 ounce serving of shaved dark chocolate. Dark chocolate provides antioxidants called flavones which can be beneficial towards heart health. The higher percentage cacao, the higher it is in flavonoids (look for 70% cacao or more).
- Heart Smart Trail Mix
Combine ½ cup Cheerios, 1 tablespoon walnuts, 1 tablespoon cranberries and 1 tablespoon of chopped dark chocolate. The walnuts provide Omega-3’s, a healthy fat, and the dark chocolate is a great source of flavones.
- Mock Carrot Cake Parfait
Place ½ cup of vanilla or plain flavored, low-fat Greek yogurt in a bowl. Top with ¼ cup shredded carrots, 1 tablespoon of raisins, 1 tablespoon of chopped walnuts and 1 tablespoon of shredded pineapple. Sprinkle with cinnamon.
- Healthy Chocolate Sundae
Combine ½ cup vanilla Greek yogurt (or low-fat vanilla frozen yogurt) with 1 ounce dark chocolate and 1 tablespoon of chopped walnuts. Freeze for 20 minutes before eating for a frosty treat.
- Chocolate Peanut Butter Popcorn
Pop a small bag of popcorn (look for the “natural, no added butter version”). Melt 1 Tbsp of peanut butter and top the popcorn. Sprinkle with cocoa powder.
- Homemade Banana Split
Slice a banana in half-length wise. Top with 2 spoonful’s vanilla, non-fat greek yogurt, a sprinkle of cocoa and a cherry if desired.