Weight loss diets can seem mundane and restrictive, especially when autumn rolls around, temperatures drop, and pumpkin spice everything becomes available. However, you don’t have to miss out on all the seasonal fun thanks to these superfoods.
Apples- With generous amounts of fiber, this portable fruit makes for a satisfying snack that won’t expand your waistline. Not only are they delicious on their own, but they’re also a great addition to any dish that needs a flavor crunch.
Sweet potatoes- A colorful attribute to any dinner table, sweet potatoes provide generous amounts of vitamin A and iron, and may also help fight inflammation. And eating the skin will help maximize your fiber intake. Try them mashed, roasted, baked, in a salad, as a side, or even grilled!
Pumpkin- Fresh pumpkin contains fiber and beta-carotene, so make sure you’re buying the real deal and not just pumpkin flavored products. You can serve pumpkin mashed, toasted, as a sauce, in a smoothie, grilled, and just about any other way you can think of. Once you decide how you will serve your dish, add a dash of cinnamon for sweetness, or a pinch of curry for a savory finish.
Pumpkin seeds- After you carve your pumpkin masterpiece, use the seeds to create a crunchy snack. Toast them in the oven and then enjoy them on their own, in a salad, soup, oatmeal, brittle or cookie. They’re a great source of phosphorus, manganese, iron, and fiber.
Cranberries- There’s no shortage of jellies, stuffing, sauces, and baked treats that feature cranberries. This berry is higher in antioxidants than other berries and fruits, and is also lower in sugar. So, make sure you indulge in the fresh version rather than the dried to avoid unnecessary added sugar. They’re also packed with fiber and vitamin C.
Beets- From the root to the leaves, beets can be consumed in their entirety. These veggies are rich in folate, magnesium, potassium, fiber, manganese, and vitamin C. Put this colorful vegetable at the center of your dinner party dish and it’ll be the talk of the table.
Pomegranate- Not only are pomegranate seeds delicious on their own, they also pack the nutrients. Pomegranate is specifically high in polyphenols, which may protect against harmful free radicals and may reduce inflammation.
Spaghetti squash- If you’re a pasta lover, allow us to introduce you to your new best friend. With a fraction of the calories, carbs, and guilt, spaghetti squash will satisfy your pasta cravings without breaking your diet.
Parsnips- In addition to vitamin C and copper, this sweet root veggie provides about four grams of fiber in one serving. The flavor lies right below the skin, so instead of peeling their outer layer, just give them a good scrub-down for cleansing. You can roast, bake, broil, mash, and puree parsnips, so get creative and enjoy their spontaneity.
Pears- If you’re on the hunt for something sweet, consider reaching for a pear. Rich in fiber and low in calories, pears also pair great with blue cheese when mixed into a salad.
Brussels sprouts- Brussels sprouts make for a filling low-calorie snack that is full of flavor and fiber. There are many different recipes and ways to cook sprouts, so keep exploring the numerous options if they don’t win you over the first time around.
Cauliflower- This veggie has become a popular substitute for potatoes, and not without reason. Cauliflower is low in calories and rich in vitamin B, fiber, vitamin C, vitamin K, folate, and others. So, next time you’re craving a comforting bowl of mashed potatoes, try this guilt-free veggie alternative.
Feel free to get into the holiday spirit and enjoy seasonal dishes with these healthy ingredients. With this long list, you’ll be sure to enjoy a variety of flavors and nutritional benefits throughout the fall season. And, not only will your body thank you, so will your guests.
Raquel is a creative writer for Lipozene.com. When she’s not helping people achieve weight loss success you can find her binging crime podcasts, traveling the globe, and exploring her native sunny San Diego.