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The Skinny on Pumpkin Spice Season: Tips for Making Delicious Drinks that Are Also Good for Your Waistline

The so-called “pumpkin everything season,” is in full swing, but let’s not topple the scales. This seasonal flavor is typically partnered with a traditional blend of seasonings that are ubiquitously added into our favorite beverages, ranging from lattes, tea, kombucha and smoothies, as well as pies, muffins, donuts and scones. When these savory spices are combined with pumpkin, there are added nutritional benefits too.

“Real pumpkin is a mood booster, and can help your eyesight or even promote weight loss. This top produce aisle pick is also low in fat and calories, but high in fiber and protein, and its seeds are loaded with magnesium and iron,” explains Irene Myers-Thompson, the regional wellness director for UnitedHealthcare.

At around 300 calories per slice, pumpkin pie is also a somewhat healthier option for an indulgent dessert, compared to apple pie, which weighs in around 400 calories, and pecan pie, which contains about 500 calories.

When baking this dessert, skip the top layer of crust or use a graham cracker crumb crust to save calories, fat and sugar, or grab two forks and share with a friend, thereby cutting the calories in half without compromising on flavor.

When it comes to beverages, skip the syrup in  a coffee shop pumpkin spice latte, which contains 50 grams of sugar and 380 calories, and use alternative sweetener instead. Or as a healthier alternative, make your own! Myers-Thompson’s favorite DIY tip for a homemade pumpkin spice latte is to substitute flavored syrup with a blend of almond milk, pumpkin puree, pumpkin pie spice and low-calorie sweetener.

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