Do not eat if you have food sensitivities. Individuals with certain pelvic pain conditions should check with their medical providers first before eating these foods.
As Thanksgiving approaches, the excitement of family gatherings and festive meals is in the air. However, for many of us, especially women, this season can also bring the stress of dieting and maintaining health amidst the abundance of tempting foods. I'm Dr. Betsy Greenleaf, a passionate advocate for women's wellness, and today I want to share some insights on enjoying Thanksgiving while nurturing your pelvic health and managing diet-related stress.
Pelvic-Healthy Desserts: A Thanksgiving Twist
Thanksgiving is synonymous with indulgence, but who says we can't indulge healthily? As a urogynecologist deeply invested in integrative and functional health, I understand the importance of a diet that supports pelvic health. Here are some pelvic-friendly dessert ideas that are not only delicious but also beneficial for your overall well-being:
Pumpkin Chia Pudding: Rich in fiber and omega-3 fatty acids, chia seeds are excellent for pelvic floor health. Combine them with pumpkin puree, a dash of maple syrup, and a sprinkle of cinnamon for a festive treat.
Baked Pears with Walnuts and Honey: Pears are high in fiber and natural sugars, making them a perfect dessert for those mindful of their sugar intake. Baking them with walnuts adds a crunch of omega-3s, essential for hormonal balance.
Dark Chocolate Avocado Mousse: Avocados are great for hormone health, and when blended with dark chocolate, they create a creamy, heart-healthy dessert that satisfies any sweet tooth.
Navigating Diet Stress During the Holidays
The holidays can often trigger stress about dieting and body image. As a women's wellness expert, I encourage you to approach this season with a mindset of balance and self-compassion. Here are some tips to help you navigate these challenges:
Listen to Your Body: Tune into your body's hunger and fullness cues. Eating mindfully allows you to enjoy your favorite foods without overindulgence.
Focus on Nourishment, Not Restriction: Instead of fixating on foods to avoid, concentrate on nourishing your body with wholesome, pelvic-friendly foods.
Practice Self-Care: The holiday season can be hectic. Remember to take time for yourself, whether it's a relaxing bath, a gentle yoga session, or simply a quiet moment with a cup of tea.
Embrace Humor and Education: Let's continue to normalize conversations about pelvic health. Share a laugh, learn something new, and remember, you're not alone in this journey.
As we gather around the Thanksgiving table this year, let's celebrate our health, indulge mindfully, and support each other in our wellness journeys. Remember, your pelvic health is a vital part of your overall well-being, and making small changes in your diet can have a significant impact
Pumpkin Chia Pudding
- 1/4 cup chia seeds
- 1 cup almond milk (or any milk of your choice)
- 1/2 cup pumpkin puree
- 2 tablespoons maple syrup (adjust to taste)
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- A pinch of nutmeg and ground ginger
- In a bowl, mix the chia seeds and almond milk. Stir well and let it sit for about 5 minutes.
- Add the pumpkin puree, maple syrup, vanilla extract, cinnamon, nutmeg, and ginger to the mixture. Mix until all ingredients are well combined.
- Cover the bowl and refrigerate for at least 4 hours, preferably overnight.
- Before serving, give it a good stir. If the pudding is too thick, add a little more milk to reach your desired consistency.
- Serve with a sprinkle of cinnamon or your favorite toppings like nuts or fruit.
Baked Pears with Walnuts and Honey
- 4 ripe pears, halved and cored
- 1/4 cup chopped walnuts
- 2 tablespoons honey
- A sprinkle of cinnamon
- Optional: Greek yogurt or whipped cream for serving
- Preheat your oven to 350°F (175°C).
- Place the pear halves on a baking sheet with the cut side up.
- Sprinkle the chopped walnuts into the center of each pear half.
- Drizzle honey over the pears and add a sprinkle of cinnamon.
- Bake in the preheated oven for about 20-25 minutes, or until the pears are soft and golden.
- Serve warm, optionally with a dollop of Greek yogurt or whipped cream.
3. Dark Chocolate Avocado Mousse
- 2 ripe avocados, peeled and pitted
- 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
- 1/2 cup maple syrup or honey
- 1/4 cup milk (almond, soy, dairy, etc.)
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- A pinch of salt
- In a blender or food processor, combine the avocados, cocoa powder, maple syrup (or honey), milk, vanilla extract, and a pinch of salt.
- Blend until the mixture is smooth and creamy. You may need to scrape down the sides a few times.
- Taste and adjust the sweetness if needed.
- Refrigerate the mousse for at least an hour before serving. This allows the flavors to meld and the mousse to thicken slightly.
- Serve chilled with your choice of toppings, such as fresh berries or a sprinkle of nuts.
Enjoy these delightful desserts that not only satisfy your sweet tooth but also contribute positively to your pelvic and overall health!