What's the Deal: Healthy makeovers for hearty holiday foods

PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) -- One of the best parts of the holiday season is the festive foods. But as you can probably guess, what tastes good at the dinner table, may not look so good on the scale.

The holidays are a time for family, friends and yes, food. But sometimes holiday favorites can get the get the best of your waistline.

Candied yam is one of the biggest offenders according to Cleveland Clinic registered dietitian Lindsay Malone. She says skipping the marshmallows and brown sugar will give them a healthy makeover.

"I would roast the yams and add your own spices like cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves and maybe a little drizzle of olive oil or pure maple syrup to lighten up the dish and maintain the nutrient value," she said

Green bean casserole is a holiday classic, but it's also classically heavy in calories. But don't worry, there's also a way to lighten the load.

"You can also use a lower fat milk to make the cream sauce. You can use roasted onions instead of the fried onions, or you could roast the green beans altogether with some pearl onions and skip the cream sauce," said Malone.

You can also steer towards the vegetables trays. It's a good place to start if you're dipping those veggies into something healthy.

"Consider something like hummus or guacamole where you're actually going to get some nutrients, some fiber, some healthy fats to pair with your vegetables," said Malone.

Malone also says to keep tabs on what you're drinking as well. Holiday drinks, especially egg nog, can contain as many calories as an entire meal!

Another holiday hit is pigs in a blanket, which is basically processed meat on a pastry! Malone says a good substitute is mini meatballs made with lean meat.

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