Weight gain and winter go together like -- what, peas and carrots? We're less active in these cold, dark times and on top of that, we crave so-called comfort foods.
One type of food to keep on your menu is winter squash. It's filling, versatile (amazing number of ways you can prepare the stuff), and best of all, delicious.
Here's some info about squash from Real Age, and then scroll down for a recipe.
Research shows that getting more vegetable fiber into the diet could help prevent an expanding waist. It may even help people drop a few pounds. So go ahead -- eat up.
Be it butternut, acorn, or delicata, winter squash has a lot going for it nutritionally, writes Jonny Bowden in his book The 150 Healthiest Foods on Earth. Squash is high not only in fiber -- about 6 grams of fiber per cup of mash -- but also in water. That means you can eat lots and feel full without going overboard on calories. Just hold the butter and brown sugar, of course.
More to Love
Whole grains are another good source of weight-controlling fiber. So why not make it a two-for-one by combining roasted squash with a toasty high-fiber grain like bulgur or quinoa. Try this EatingWell recipe that combines squash and whole grains in one delicious fills-you-up-without-fattening-you-up dish.
Recipe: Butternut Squash and Barley Pilaf Serves 4-6
1 T olive or canola oil
1 medium onion, chopped
1 14-ounce can chicken or vegetable broth/stock
1 3/4 cups water
1 cup pearl barley
2 cups peeled butternut squash, cut into 1-inch cubes
1/3 cup chopped parsley
1 teaspoon lemon zest
1 garlic clove, minced
Salt and pepper to taste
Heat oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add onion and cook, stirring often, until softened, 2 to 3 minutes. Add broth, water, barley and squash; bring to a simmer, reduce heat to medium-low and simmer until the barley and squash are tender and most of the liquid has been absorbed, about 45 minutes. Add parsley, lemon zest, lemon juice, garlic, salt and pepper; mix gently. Serve.