Monday, November 12, 2012

A Happy and Healthy Thanksgiving: Easy Peasy Pre-Feast Snack Ideas

By: Vincent Yang

Oh how time seems to fly when one is having fun (or when recruiting for a full time job – either or). I looked at my calendar the other day and saw there are only two more weeks till the big Turkey Day! I will be celebrating with relatives in Los Angeles / Beverly Hills this year – and as the guest, there will be no cooking in the kitchen for me (whew – no need to start the holiday season off burning down anymore kitchens!).
View of LA
However, I have been tasked to bring the pre-feast snacks, which is no easy feat in itself, as my relatives (being a product of image conscious LA) are quite weight and health conscious. Luckily, being a food writer and all, I have many resources at my disposal – and after some preliminary due diligence, I've narrowed down my Thanksgiving “healthy apps” menu.


Round Pound Estate 2010 Cabernet Sauvignon
Located in the Rutherford region of Napa Valley, Round Pond is a family-owned and operated estate designed around their vineyards, gardens and orchards. At $30 a bottle for the 2010 Cabernet Sauvignon, bringing this wine to the dinner screams, “I haven’t made my million in the stock market yet, but I've definitely graduated from the Two Buck Chuck”. The 2010 has initial top notes of Spanish lavender and brambles are followed by graphite and Asian plum - the flavors are reminiscent of mocha dusted bakers chocolate and dark cherries. And as they say, a glass of red a day keeps the doctor away…

Kettle Bakes Potato Chips
Already a pioneer in the kettle-cooked category, Kettle Brand is now re-energizing the baked chip category and relaunching its popular Kettle Brand Bakes line with updated packaging and two new flavors – Sour Cream & Onion and Cheddar & Roasted Tomato. Kettle Brand Bakes are the only baked chip made from real, whole slices of potatoes. Unlike other baked “crisps” on the market, which use dehydrated potato pulp and flakes, Bakes delivers crunchy, golden whole potato slices seasoned with the brand’s signature all-natural ingredients and non-GMO potatoes. And at 120 calories per 1oz serving, this is a snack that you can “accidentally” mindlessly munch on without breaking the calorie bank.

Earth Balance Spreads 
I love the culinary and peanut spreads that give a nice kick to my low carb Melba toast and raw veggies for only ~100 calories per tablespoon. All of Earth Balance products are plant-based, vegan, made without artificial ingredients or hydrogenated oils – so I can still feel semi-healthy while eating flavorfully well. Also, the Coconut & Peanut Spread was just selected by Oprah for her 2012 Favorite Things List – so you know its gotta be good!

Campbell’s Gourmet Bisques 
Four new Campbell’s Gourmet Bisques provide complex layers of on-trend flavor combinations that appeal to discerning tastes. Culinary-minded folks who are non-kitchen dwelling minded (just heat these bisques on the stove or in the microwave and serve) will totally enjoy these new bisques as an introduction to any meal. At 110-220 calories per cup (depending on flavor), these bisques give you deep flavors and a hearty fullness that is reminiscent of a fine dining restaurant experience.

Twinlab Forskohlii Diet Fuel 
I am the first to admit, as I get older, I need a little extra boost to keep my metabolism moving like in my youth – especially with all the food I’m constantly trying. Therefore, I have no problem admitting that I pop a Twinlab Forskohlii Diet Fuel before lunch everyday – and I'll for sure be bringing a bottle to share with my relatives as part of the pre-meal snack*. The pill stimulates fat-burning enzymes and hormones, which, in turn, causes weight loss. The product also contains Green Tea Extract which helps boost energy and focus and Chromium, an essential trace mineral that helps you burn fat (even when sitting around watching the Thanksgiving Day parade!).
So hopefully this Thanksgiving will be filled with great food and great family – without much damage to the waistline (afterall, there is still Christmas feasting to go!). With that said, Team Finance Foodie hopes all of you have a happy and healthy Thanksgiving!

 *as with any weight loss supplement, please consult your doctor before usage. The diet fuel is to be used with healthy meal plan and is not meant for children under the age of 18.

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