Healthier Easter Ideas

 In Dr Kate Hughes

When you look around the supermarket at Easter time, do you ever despair of the same old Easter eggs making a reappearance year after year? Look around – there are so many other options! With all the enticement of Easter chocolate and naughty bank holiday foods and drinks on the horizon, it can sometimes seem impossible to avoid temptation, but with a little imagination, it doesn’t have to be the overindulgent sugar-fest that is marketed to us.

For those seeking sugar-free alternatives, check out the ‘free-from’ aisle of your local supermarket and you may just find some sugar/dairy/gluten free alternatives that are just as tasty! If you are willing to eat sugar but want to limit your intake, consider instead a good quality dark chocolate egg. If you choose a dark chocolate egg that’s at least 70% cocoa you should see ‘cocoa mass/solids’ top of the ingredients list. This is significant, because ingredients are listed in order of weight, therefore most milk and white chocolate eggs will have ‘sugar’ listed first as their main ingredient. Another tip is to count the ingredients: ideally, you only want to see around 5. The longer the list, the higher the chance of artificial flavours and hydrogenated fats/oils etc you should ideally avoid. Not a chocolate fan? Many savoury alternatives are now starting to appear in high street shops which sound fantastic… Eggs made entirely of cheese, complete with crackers and chutney! Plus of course there are always real eggs to enjoy!

If you are something of a traditionalist and like the idea of homemade gifts… consider baking your own cakes or biscuits with an Easter theme! When baking your own, you can really seize the opportunity to use healthier ingredients. For example, you could try using honey instead of sugar, or avocado instead of butter, or perhaps almond milk instead of cow’s milk. Do some research online – there are countless recipes to choose from for those wishing to substitute sugar and fat for healthier alternatives. Perhaps treat yourself to some delightful new cookie cutters and cake moulds; there are countless designs for Easter themed shapes such as eggs, chicks and bunny rabbits.

If baking really isn’t your thing, why not try your hand at creating some Easter themed arts and crafts? A fantastic activity to try with the children or grandchildren, you can make some pretty Easter eggs out of card and ask the children to help decorate. Perhaps you could try knitting or crocheting small Easter toys, such as eggs, chicks and lambs? Pompoms are even simpler to make and these can be adapted into anything with some pipe cleaners and stick-on eyes! Check online for tutorials – there’s a craft for everybody these days! Easter trees and bunting are also a charming way to celebrate the festivities without having to worry about the excessive consumption of sugary food and drink over the bank holiday weekend!

If you simply want to enjoy everything, but in moderation, consider purchasing or making smaller, individually wrapped items. This automatically helps to monitor your portion size and may help to stifle an urge to stuff your face needlessly! However you choose to celebrate this bank holiday weekend, we hope you enjoy yourselves!

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