Superbowl Sunday...probably the most unusual Superbowl games that any of us could ever imagine.  Life has certainly been weird this past year, so why should the Superbowl be any different! With Covid restrictions in place, only about 25,000 fans, just short of a third of capacity will be inside the stadium.  As far as parties at homes and pubs, they will be limited as well this year.  However, what does remain the same is the food and drink, even if you are just celebrating with a few people. Of course, it is okay to splurge a bit, but there are a few tricks that can help keep us from overdoing it.

The first tip to keep us on track when snacking is to be mindful. Instead of mindlessly eating chips, pretzels, or other fan favorites from the bowl, load up your dish so at least you have some idea of the amount you will be eating. If that just seems like too much work, another trick is to keep the bowls of chips and dip out of arms reach to avoid the constant shoveling from bowl to mouth.

Guess how many chicken wings Americans will eat on Superbowl Sunday?  More than one billion!  That's a lot of chickens, but that is just the start of it. Chips, pizza, nachos, and beer are typical Super Bowl Sunday staples, making it one of  America's biggest eating holidays, just second to Thanksgiving. On game day, it is estimated that the average American will take 2,400 calories during the four to five-hour party. That's well above the number of calories recommended for most of us to eat in 24 hours! 

While there will be plenty of food with lots of fat and carbs, it won't hurt to at least add a few healthy options like a veggie or fruit plate. It is easy to load up on beer or other alcohol.  Pace yourself and consider having another non-alcoholic beverage between each drink. No one is suggesting we eat tofu during the big game, but there are ways to make some of our favorites a little healthy-ish, especially if we are cooking at home.  For example, we could skip the pepperoni on the pizza or bake wings instead of deep-frying them. Check out these tips and links to some recipes. 

  • Getty Images/iStockphoto/bhofack2
    Getty Images/iStockphoto/bhofack2

    Lighter Chicken Wings

    More than one billion wings are consumed every Superbowl Sunday, and it doesn't help that delicious fatty sauces like buffalo and barbecue are added on to the wings.  Add some blue cheese dressing and each wing is about 170 calories, but who eats just one? If you are making your own, bake them or use an air fryer. Go light on the toppings and dips.  Here are a few recipes with lower-calorie versions.

  • Afisphoto/Viktor Fischer/Thinkstock
    Afisphoto/Viktor Fischer/Thinkstock

    Fruit and Veggie Platters

    Fruits and veggies offer a delicious low-carb and calorie option that will give everyone a good source of fiber.  This keeps us feeling fuller and reduces our chance of overeating the wings and pizza. They are also a great alternative to munching mindlessly on chips and nachos.

  • South China Morning Post via Getty
    South China Morning Post via Getty

    Sweet Potato Skins

    Who doesn't love potato skins, but they can be loaded with fat.  Sweet potatoes offer more fiber and low-fat cheese and salsa verde are sure to make these a hit. Check out the recipe.

  • The Washington Post via Getty
    The Washington Post via Getty

    Pizza with Pizazz

    More than 12 million pizzas will be sold on Superbowl Sunday, making it one of the most popular foods during the big game.  When ordering, stick with veggie toppings and skip the pepperoni and sausage.  That adds a ton of extra fat. If you are making your own, here are some recipes that make pizza a little healthier.

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