When most people think of fall, they think of comfort meals. More often than not, these foods are not the healthiest options to choose from. However, there are some that are great for enjoying once the autumn season hits. Additionally, some of those grocery store items you thought you should stay away from, aren't really that bad for you.
As the leaves change color, there's a good chance you'll find yourself at a cider mill or picking apples. Sure, these are rich in antioxidants and fiber, but they aren't the only fall food you'll want to enjoy. Some of the other must-haves for this time of year include:1
- Brussels sprouts
- Sweet potatoes
Most of the items on this list are root vegetables, so of course they are best enjoyed in the fall months. However, some of the other items – like pears and dates – may come as a surprise to most. These are all excellent options for hearty meals and snacking. Get creative with your recipes this season to find out how you can incorporate less-used foods like turnips and parsnips into a meal.
Foods that are OK to enjoy
There are a number of items at the grocery store we all avoid when trying to make smart-eating choices. However, not all of those foods have to be on the do-not-eat list. Here are a few that may comes as a surprise to you:2
- Cheese: Although you have have heard that cheese is a no-no, most varieties are actually a great source of calcium. Additionally, cheeses contain protein, vitamin D, phosphorus and zinc, and can even help regulate blood pressure.
- Frozen desserts: OK, so not all frozen treats are a good idea. You'll want to stay away from items that have added sugar or artificial sweeteners listed as the first or second ingredient. However, those that contain only natural flavors – like Greek frozen yogurts – are a great option for satisfying your sweet tooth.
- Snacks: Snack foods are often cookies, crackers and chips, which can be extremely unhealthy. However, if you select whole grain options and those that are void of hydrogenated oils and shortening, it's OK to indulge. The best choice: popcorn.
As with most things in life, these foods are great for you in moderation. Smart eating is generally healthy, so just pay attention to what's on your plate.
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