As the weather gets cooler, do you find yourself craving comfort foods? Do you associate comfort foods with meals and snacks that derail your physique goals?
Great news, you can have your fall comfort foods and your physique, too! Read more to learn about the top 5 fall foods (and one beverage) you should include for a fit physique.
Squash comes in several varieties. If you seek low-carb alternatives to holiday stuffing or everyday spaghetti, there is a squash variety for you. Butternut squash is one of the most popular fall/winter squash forms and is only 82 calories per cup, which is a little more than pumpkin but less than sweet potato per cup. Like both pumpkin and sweet potato, butternut squash offers high levels of vitamin A, C, and antioxidants. Like its sweet potato counterpart, it is also high in fiber, magnesium, and potassium.
Pumpkin is 94% water, which means you can consume a whole cup of it for less than 50 calories. Pumpkin is loaded with vitamin A, vitamin C, and antioxidants. Vitamin A helps with skin, muscle, and bone health, while vitamin C and antioxidants help support the immune system. Turn pureed pumpkin into endless dessert options to satisfy your sweet tooth – and physique happy – by mixing it with protein powder, cocoa powder, or cinnamon. Running short on time? Grab a can of pumpkin, sprinkle it with pie seasoning, and eat it with a spoon!
Sweet potatoes, like pumpkin, are packed with vitamin A, vitamin C, and antioxidants. While they are not as low in calories per gram as pumpkin, you can create plenty of dessert, soup, and french fry recipes. Or, you can slice them up, toast them and eat as a low-carb bread substitute.
Sweet potatoes are also high in magnesium and potassium. Magnesium and potassium help support heart health and normal electrolyte balance to reduce muscle cramping episodes. Even better, they are high in fiber, which helps with digestive health.
Want a filling, nutrient-packed, very low-calorie food? One cup of raw cabbage is only 22 calories! Cabbage doesn’t have to be boring, as you can turn it into coleslaw, bases for salads, or cook it for soups and stews. Cabbage is high in potassium, which helps support heart, brain, and nerve function, and decreases the risk of getting muscle cramps. Like the other fall foods, it is also high in Vitamin C, antioxidants, and fiber.
Apples are one of the easiest on-the-go snacks. Forget your lunch? You can likely find an apple at any corner store, gas station, or airport. Like so many other fall fitness foods, they are filling and low in calories. One medium apple contains just under 100 calories while offering high levels of fiber, vitamin C, potassium, and vitamin K. The type of fiber in apples is considered prebiotic, which promotes gut health.
Creamy Chai Latte Protein
While all of these fall foods boost your health and physique with low-carb, high-fiber, and health-packed nutrients, none are high in protein. Protein is essential for building muscle for a lean physique. If you seek a fall comfort protein (and alternative to sugar-packed fall flavored coffees and ciders), give the Creamy Chai Latte PRO7EIN Synthesis protein at Nutrishop a try. It’s perfectly spiced flavoring packs in 34 grams of seven unique sources of protein, including whey (quick release protein), casein (slow release protein), and egg (easily digestible protein), making it perfect for any time of day!
Go ahead and give in to those fall comfort food cravings. Many wonderful fall foods support your physique goals and overall health! Use this list to start your meal planning, and feel free to share your favorite fall physique foods with the community too.
About the Author: Dr. Meredith Butulis is a licensed Sport/Orthopedic Physical Therapist, Certified Exercise Physiologist, Strength & Conditioning Coach, Personal Trainer, and Yoga/Pilates Instructor practicing since 1998. She is the creator of the ISSA Fitness Comeback Coaching Certification, author of the Mobility | Stability Equation Books, and host of The Fitness Comeback Coaching Podcast. Learn more on IG @Dr.MeredithButulis or visit http://MeredithButulis.com.