When the weather is cold and frosty, we all reach for comfort foods to keep us warm. In fact, there are many health benefits of consuming cold weather foods all year round, but in winter our body is more susceptible to numerous infectious diseases, which is why it’s important to eat healthy foods that will help keep our immune system on guard. Eating cold weather foods such as stews, root veggies, and soups have a great amount of amazing benefits to the body. Don’t worry, these winter foods are not heavy and they are absolutely healthy for you! Moreover, they will help boost your metabolism.
1. Tomato soup
When it’s cold, everybody likes a bowl of warm tomato soup, but did you know that this soup is great for your metabolism? Tomato soup is high in lycopene, a powerful antioxidant that combats toxins associated with illness. Any form of disease harms your metabolism, and when cooked, tomatoes are much more nutritious than when you eat them raw. To make your tomato soup healthier, eliminate excess sugar and sodium. I love to add almond milk to my soup as a creamer since I think it’s much healthier than dairy milk.
2. Sweet potatoes
Although potatoes usually get a bad rap, sweet potatoes are among the best cold weather foods to eat today. Sweet potatoes are rich in fiber, B vitamins, and magnesium that all help to keep you full, boost your metabolism, and reduce your glycemic index. Sweet potatoes are also high in beta-carotene that helps keep the immune system running strong, which is important to a good metabolism.
Many people associate a hot bowl of oatmeal with winter and I’m no exception. The thing is, hot oatmeal is very warming to your body and it boosts your metabolism and helps to satiate your hunger. It also improves digestion, and is a great meal to start the day. I would recommend using nonfat Greek yogurt or unsweetened almond milk in your oats instead of sugary nondairy milks or dairy milk. You can use stevia as your sweetener or simply add berries, raisins or walnuts to your oatmeal.
Well, turnips are not only one of the great cold weather foods to eat today, but they are also one of the best detox foods to add to your healthy diet. Turnips reduce mucus and help remove toxins from the body. Moreover, they are high in fiber and low in starches. Turnips are delightfully delicious when mashed or roasted and you can even use them instead of white potatoes. Turnips are also rich in Vitamin C that acts as a great and natural metabolism booster and helps boost your immune system.
5. Hot cocoa
When it comes to cold weather, hot cocoa is something we should never forget about. Hot cocoa is a fabulous beverage to have any time of the year, especially in the winter. Cocoa is good for your mood and your metabolism. Make your hot cocoa with plain cocoa powder, stevia and almond milk. Stir in cacao powder or some raw cacao nibs when you are done, and you will have incredibly delicious hot cocoa to drink today. Chocolate contains natural stimulants and powerful antioxidants that boost your metabolism in a much better way than caffeine.
6. Veggie soup
Veggie soup is good for you and your metabolism, of course, if you don’t add white potatoes, beans, and corn to it. While these foods are tasty and healthy, eating too many of them at one meal can spike your glycemic index. I would recommend adding low carb and nutritious vegetables such as squash, green beans, garlic, onions, chopped red bell pepper, frozen peas, tomatoes, turnips, carrots, spinach and leafy greens, to your veggie soup. You soup will be full of vitamins, antioxidants, protein and fiber.
7. Butternut squash
One of my favorite winter foods is butternut squash that is rich in potassium, Vitamins A and C, minerals, and fiber but low in carbohydrates and sugar. It’s also a glycemic friendly food. Adding this healthy veggie to your meals, whether in a soup, roasted, steamed, or cubed, are all wonderful ways to get butternut squash into your diet.
I’m not a big fan of winter season but still I love the holiday season and these tasty cold weather foods. They are healthy and so beneficial to the body and they can help improve your metabolism any time of the year. Do you eat any of these foods during the winter season? Do you have any other cold weather food to add to this list? Feel free to do it in the comments section.