When it comes to Christmas dinner healthy eating is usually the last thing on people’s mind. However, with a little thought and preparation you can start the meal in a healthy way whilst still enjoying the foods you eat. That is why today I am giving you a list of four healthy Christmas dinner starters.
1) HOMEMADE SOUP:- Soup is a popular starter to many meals and Christmas dinner is no exception. However, the problem is most people go for canned soup which often contain high levels of sodium and are full of chemicals. Fortunately, this problem can be solved by making your own soup. Making your own soup is not as difficult as you might imagine and ensures that it contains only natural ingredients. By using natural meats and vegetables you can create a healthy starter that is rich in fibre, protein and vitamins all of which help your body function properly.
To make your own soup you first need to create a stock. Next you prepare the additional ingredients. Then you combine the stock with the additional ingredients, simmer (usually for about 20 to 30 minutes) and your soup is ready. Unfortunately, I do not have any homemade soup recipes on this blog but I have found an excellent resource for you. Healthy Eating Made Easy explains how to prepare both chicken and vegetable stock and has 13 homemade soup recipes that use just natural ingredients.
2) MELON:- Melon is another popular choice when it comes to starters. It is also one of the healthier choices being rich in vitamin A, the B vitamins, vitamin C, vitamin E and the antioxidant lycopene. Together these ingredients help protect your body from damaging free radicals (harmful substances that are a by-product of reactions with oxygen). Lycopene has also been shown to protect your body from a variety of cancers including breast cancer, colon cancer and lung cancer.
3) SALAD:- Salad is probably the most popular stereotype for a healthy meal. However, there is a lot of truth in this stereotype. Salads are rich in natural ingredients and are generally low in calories. The health benefits of salads depends on the ingredients you use but most salads contain high levels of fibre, vitamins and minerals which all support optimal health.
Salads are even easier to make than homemade soups because there is little to no cooking involved. In most cases you just throw some fresh ingredients together, make a simple olive oil dressing and the salad is ready to go. If you fancy having salad as a starter this Christmas then you should check out Salad-Recipes.co.uk which has a fantastic selection of recipes to choose from.
4) SMOKED SALMON:- Smoked salmon is a great source of omega 3 essential fatty acids, magnesium, phosphorous, protein, selenium, vitamin B3, vitamin B12 and vitamin D. Since it comes ready to eat smoked salmon is a very simple starter that can be served directly on a plate. The main health benefits of salmon come from the omega 3 essential fatty acids which promote improved brain health, protect you from certain cancers (including ovarian cancer and prostate cancer), protect your from heart disease, reduce inflammation and support healthy vision.
Healthy eating and Christmas dinner can go hand in hand. So why not start your meal the right way and give one of the above suggestions a try this year?
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