HOUSTON (CW39) When it’s cold we turn to comfort foods, soups, and hot chocolate. Meteorologist and nutrition coach Lindsey Day is here to show us how to make healthy, immune-boosting versions of our favorite winter foods!
Hot chocolate is everyone’s favorite! People don’t realize that dark chocolate is loaded with magnesium, which is responsible for over 300 bodily processes, including immune boosting benefits. This hot chocolate is not going to have chocolate sweetened with sugar and dairy! Instead, we are going to sweeten it ourselves with Stevia. The magic about Stevia is that it is not going to spike your blood sugar. It is made by taking the sweet part of a plant, which has no blood sugar spiking results. The reason this is important is because maintaining stable blood sugar is not only important for your immune system, but it’s important for your health in general. We are using almond milk, instead of dairy. Almond milk also has vitamin D and vitamin E. Vitamin D is so powerful for the immune system, as well as vitamin E, which is a very powerful antioxidant. In addition to all of that, we’re going to add a little bit of coconut oil to give it a creamy taste, blend it in the blender and top it with cinnamon.
We want to think about our health like a bank account. We want to make more deposits than withdrawals. It’s not that we can NEVER make a withdrawal, but let me show you how you can take some of your favorite wintertime holiday foods, and make them not only healthy, but also immune boosting!
Another holiday wintertime staple is beef stew! This beef stew has grass-fed beef, which it is very important for your health to use grass-fed! The beef and these pinto beans have very important micronutrients that help to boost your immune system. We have iron and zinc in there-very important for your immune system! Carrots have loads of vitamin A, which people usually think of as benefiting your eyesight. While this is true, but vitamin A is also very powerful in regulating the immune system! Vitamin C is loaded in this bell pepper, and we’ve all heard about how important vitamin C is to the immune system! Onions and garlic also have immune boosting benefits as well! Loading all this stuff in a soup is going to give your body some great nourishment that’s going to help your body this winter season!
If you want to make the hot chocolate or beef stew, here are the recipes.
Healthy Hot Chocolate (paleo, dairy-free, gluten-free, keto friendly)
· 1 tablespoon unsweetened cocoa powder
· 6 packets stevia
· 2 squares unsweetened baker’s chocolate
· 2 cups unsweetened almond milk
· 1 Tbsp coconut oil
1- Heat almond milk in microwave for 1 and a half minutes or over stove on medium heat for 5 minutes
2- Add baker’s chocolate, whisk in unsweetened cocoa powder, stevia, and coconut oil.
3- Blend in blender.
Beef Stew (dairy-free, gluten-free)
- 1 medium yellow onion
- 2 cloves garlic
- 3 carrots
- 2 bell peppers
- 2 Tablespoons coconut oil or extra virgin olive oil
- 1 pound grass-fed ground beef
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 Tablespoon tomato paste
- 1 15-oz. can diced tomatoes, or 2 large fresh tomatoes
- 3-4 cups beef or chicken stock or water
- 1 teaspoon red pepper
- 1 15-oz. can Pinto or Great Northern beans
- Cut onion, garlic, bell peppers and carrots into medium dice.
- Add 1.5 Tablespoons oil and diced veggies into a medium sized stew pot. Add salt to taste. Cook over medium heat for 2 to 3 minutes.
- Add grass-fed ground beef to the stew pot. Cook for an additional 7 to 10 minutes.
- Add tomato paste and diced tomatoes, stir to combine. Add beef or chicken stock or water and bring to a boil.
- Add salt and red pepper to taste, and simmer for 10 minutes. Add beans and simmer for another 10 minutes.