Make your tailgate party healthy

Tailgate Food

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MASON CITY, Iowa – Football season is in full-swing, but some of those foods we love at our tailgate’s and parties can wreak havoc on your diet.

From high school, to college, to pro, there’s no doubt about it, we love our football. And nothing goes more hand in hand with a football game than tailgating.

Football Fan, Nathan Carlson said, “Just the weather, getting everyone together. We all work during the week so we don’t really have time to do anything.”

And most tailgating enthusiasts have their favorite foods to go along with the party.

“Brats and hamburgers.”

“Burgers, brats, and beer. Can’t go wrong with either one of them.”

Unfortunately, those three “B’s” can be real gut-busters.

But Registered Dietician Amy Kerchhoff says there’s no need to skip out on all the fun, just because you’re watching your waistline.

She said, “Buying 90% lean ground beef,you can buy lean turkey meat, chicken, you can also buy chicken brats that are a lot lower in fat.”

That might seem like messing with tradition, but shoppers say they’ve grilled up those same options.

Carlson said, “I try to have a little healthy, because even though it’s football day, you always play that in the back of your mind.”

So when you’re hitting the grocery store, Amy says there are tons of easy swaps you can make to your favorite snacks without sacrificing flavor.

Kerchhoff said, “You can use fresh carrots, celery and peppers are another great one that you can dip into humus or also the plain Greek yogurt with ranch seasoning. It tastes just like ranch without all the fat and a little bit of protein too to help fill you up.”

When it comes to the sweet treats, the key there is to take everything in moderation or make recipes with some surprising ingredients.

Kerchhoff said, “Brownies you can make with a can of pureed black beans, which adds to the protein and they taste just great. I have them in my freezer right now.”

And let’s not forget some of the other tailgate staples.

Football Fan, Greg Roggeman said, “Lots of beer and bottles and bottles of whiskey, kegs, you name it.”

Amy says to avoid blowing your diet, it’s important to make sure you’re not drinking your calories.

“Switching to diet pop to eliminate your calories there or light beer and light mixers.”

And no matter how your team fairs on game day, making smart choices at your tailgate can make you feel like a real winner.

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