A Recipe For Healthy Holidays

Diana Helfand
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Wednesday - December 02, 2009
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Waikele resident Ken Miyaji and his family have owned Blinds of Hawaii for the past 28 years, and take pride in providing great service to their clients.

Ken and wife Edean, who works at the cashier’s office at Macy’s in Kahala Mall, have been married for 41 years. They have three children: Son Shane works with Ken, son Shannon lives in Salt Lake, and daughter Leisha and her husband, Mark, live in Waikele.

Ken provides islandwide service, and if you are sprucing up for the holidays, he is happy to consult on installation of all types of blinds.

I would like to dedicate this column to Ken and all small-business owners who provide such caring and dedicated service to our community.

This week, I’m not featuring a food recipe, but rather a recipe for keeping healthy while enjoying this holiday season. It’s actually a mini lecture from one of my nutrition classes.


Moderation is the key, and if you do a few simple things you can eat everything you want, only in smaller portions.

* One tip that I always follow (except during bad weather) is to walk more. I try to park in a central location, take a shopping bag on wheels and do all my errands on foot, rather than taking the car to each place. If you plan your errands carefully, this works great.

* Dessert doesn’t have to be a no-no, just eat smaller pieces of pie, cake, etc. and try some low-fat choices such as Haagen-Dazs frozen yogurts, or Ben and Jerry’s Chocolate Fudge Brownie or Cherry Garcia yogurt. Make a banana split by topping with light whipped cream, chopped nuts and chocolate syrup (which has no fat). You will feel satisfied, get good potassium from the banana and cut the fat.

* For a healthy and quick breakfast or snack at work, try a cup of flavored or plain low-fat yogurt with additions such as a teaspoon of flax seeds, dried cranberries or raisins, some chopped nuts, nonfat granola (see ingredients on the bins for granola with no added oil) or some crunchy dried soybeans.

I purchase the above additions at health-food stores, where they are kept fresh in bins. Purchase about a pound of each and store in Ziploc bags in the refrigerator to keep them fresh.

I would love to hear from my readers with your special tips on how to keep fit and trim without feeling deprived. Just e-mail me and let me know if I can share with other MidWeek readers.

Here are some lower-fat substitutions for your holiday meals: * Substitute low-fat margarine, such as Smart Balance without trans fats, for butter in your recipes.

* Use egg substitute or egg whites in stuffing and for baking. General rule is two egg whites equals one whole egg in most recipes.

* Use vegetable broth with low sodium instead of chicken or turkey broth.

* Use low-fat, skim or evaporated milk instead of whole milk or cream. Whole milk contains 8 grams of fat per 1 cup serving; skim contains 0 grams.

* Use low-fat or nonfat sour cream for dips instead of regular sour cream.

* Try low-fat or nonfat cheeses for toppings or to serve with vegetables or crackers.

* For a lower-fat stuffing, add apples or dried fruit instead of sausage or fatty meat products and bake in a separate pan to avoid the fat from the turkey dripping into the stuffing.

Class dismissed.

(Diana Helfand, author of “Hawaii Light and Healthy” and “The Best of Heart-y Cooking,” has taught nutrition in the Kapiolani Community College culinary arts program.)

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