During all-American holidays, such as Fourth of July and Memorial Day, people think about serving Red, White and Blue foods at gatherings. There are a variety of healthy Red, White and Blue diabetes-smart foods that are available to eat all year round. Find out which ones to add to your daily menus.
- Get vitamin K, potassium and plenty of antioxidants from Red grapes. One cup is only around 100 calories, making them a sweet and guilt-free treat. Try freezing them to serve on a hot day as a natural alternative to sugary ice cream and ice pops.
- Blue baked corn chips with Red salsa are a mouthwatering snack. They have far less calories than fried potato chips with sour cream dip. Limit to one serving size of chips according to the box or bag size. An added bonus is the antioxidants found in Blue corn and tomatoes. White bean hummus is also a better choice than sour cream dip. Beans are packed with protein to make you feel energized. Serve hummus with Blue corn chips and a colorful vegetable platter that includes Red bell peppers, cherry Red tomatoes, White button mushrooms and White cauliflower.
- If you want an alternative to sugar-laden ice tea and sangria with alcohol, consider brewing a pitcher of iced hibiscus tea. This refreshing herbal tea can also help you regulate blood pressure while cooling you off on a hot day. Sweeten tea with Stevia or a sugar substitute rather than sugar or honey. Add a fresh cherry to each glass for a bright burst of Red with lots of antioxidants.
- Make a big bowl of sugar-free cherry jello and add fresh Blueberries with a low-sugar whipped topping for an easy and low-calorie treat.
- White foods are often considered a poor choice for people with diabetes. This is particularly true when they are White processed foods such as White rice, White pasta and White bread. White potatoes can make a satisfying side dish with plenty of fiber when eaten with the skin. Boil, bake or grill White potatoes rather than frying or mashing them. Serve potatoes with lots of herbs and spices, such as rosemary, garlic and chives. Avoid smothering them with sour cream or butter, which add fat and calories to an otherwise healthy choice.
- There are other healthy White food choices that can fit easily into your diet. Consider a handful of nuts. White pistachios, peanuts and macadamia nuts all have fiber, protein and folate. Beans are another great White option, including White beans, chickpeas and pinto beans. Remember to serve low-fat White dairy foods such as plain Greek yogurt, fat-free vanilla yogurt, unsweetened almond, cashew or soy milk and low-fat cottage cheese. Keep portion sizes in mind to avoid adding too many calories and carbohydrates.
- Add a dash of Blue to your salads with a bit of crumbled Blue cheese. A little bit can add bold flavor to sauces and salads without adding lots of fat or calories. Include beets in your salad for a burst of Reddish-Blue color and lots of antioxidants.
- Any gathering is not complete without sugar-free desserts. Create a platter with plenty of colorful choices. Include Blueberries, blackberries, raspberries and strawberries, which are all packed with nutrients and antioxidants. Add bananas for potassium and watermelon for lycopene. Top off fruit salads with a small dollop of low fat low sugar whipped cream. Red delicious apples also add an American touch. Try baking them with a dash of water and plenty of cinnamon for a flavorful dessert with none of the guilt.
There are many Red, White and Blue foods to make your all-American holidays healthier. Once you discover the flavors and textures of these colorful foods, you’re sure to want to add them to your daily diet.