There are some foods worth staying on the offense about when it comes to calories and saturated fats on game-day. Whether you’re there for the halftime show or in it for all four quarters, watch out for these top offenders and instead choose healthier options to avoid any next-day regret.
One slice of a medium supreme pizza has about 240 calories, 11 grams of fat and 4.5 grams of saturated fat. Yes, we said one slice, and yes that’s 25 percent of your daily-recommended intake of saturated fat. Add on the other game-day snacks and any other meal you’ve had for the day, and you’re teetering high above your healthy fat intake before the night is even over. Instead, opt for a homemade or vegetarian option. We're loving our healthier and drool-worthy Cheesy BBQ Chicken Pizza.
Avoid these long enough and this cheesy indulgence becomes soggy and less appealing by half time. One portion, which is about 6-8 nachos (who has ever really eaten just one serving?!), has 346 calories, 19 grams of fat and 8 grams of saturated fat. Instead, opt for loaded sweet potato nachos with black beans, jalapenos, salsa and avocado. Try this recipe from Kara Lydon, the foodie dietician, that'll satisfy your craving with a cashew cheese sauce that's to die for.
7 Layer Bean Dip
This is a layer of unknowns when it comes to dipping your chip — sour cream, cheese, cream cheese and gaucomole. While we love the element of surprise, your body doesn’t. Plus, a serving of this dip rings in at two tablespoons. Since we all know that we're not sticking to that parameter, choose a fresh black bean and corn dip without all of the cheese and sour cream.
We know this is an American favorite, but is it worth 477 calories per serving, 25 grams of fat and 4.4 grams of saturated fat? With more calories than pizza or nachos, this is definitely one treat you want to avoid. If you crave the crunch factor, we have the perfect solution that'll satifsy your craving without having to sacrifice any taste or texture. Get our Crispy Green Bean Fries recipe here.
French Onion Dip with Chips
Frito Lays French Onion Dip contains about 60 calories per two tablespoons and 45 calories from fat. While this might be a classic, look for veggies and hummus instead. With 240 mg of sodium in the onion dip alone, you’ll feel less bloated or puffy the next day if you opt for something with less salt. Hummus with carrots, cucumber, broccoli and cauliflower will satisfy the savory taste and crunchy texture we all crave.
Mac and Cheese
Mac and cheese can have as much as 850 calories per cup. Loaded with all different types of cheese, butter and milk — sometimes even heavy cream — this is one comfort food you should avoid. If you're hosting and this is a crowd favorite, offer to make the dish and swap in healthier ingredients, like ones found in this Butternut Squash Mac and Cheese recipe.
Eating two handfuls of chex mix adds up to about 280 calories according to Dr. Charles Platkin of CUNY School of Public Health at Hunter College in New York City. He said that to burn off those two handfuls alone, you'd need to jump up and down consistently for 30 minutes. Instead, get your snack fix from air-popped popcorn.