If guests ask what they can bring to Thanksgiving, tell them their walking shoes.
We fill our plates with sweet potatoes, green beans, cranberries, and stuffing. After we eat all these holiday favorites, those foods are digested and converted to our body’s best fuel, glucose. This blood sugar is the energy preferred by the brain. Muscles like it too. But it needs insulin to pull it into cells in order to be used. Otherwise, it just floats around in the blood. This is why those with diabetes need insulin.
Stay with me on this science lesson.
If we have more glucose than we can use, some is stored for about a day’s use of energy. The rest is converted to fat cells.
When we walk or do some kind of physical activity to call our muscles into action, the muscles use glucose as energy, reducing the amount in our blood.
Blood sugar peaks 30-60 minutes after eating and dips to its low 2-3 hours after a meal. A walk within 30 minutes after you eat blunts the rise in blood sugar, reducing fat storage.
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Not only does a 15-minute walk after a meal normalize blood sugar, it also aids in digestion, moving food through the GI tract. This helps with acid reflux, heartburn, and sleep. Because a short walk has more benefits than we can count, leave the dishes and head outside.
Given that this month’s holiday is all about thanks, your body will be thankful for a walk after you eat. You’ll be grateful for an easy recipe. Bake grapes and spoon over cheese to serve as everyone is waiting for the turkey to come out of the oven or with dessert. You could also hand off this recipe to that guest who asked to bring something.
Burrata is a fresh mozzarella ball filled with shreds of mozzarella. Look for it in the refrigerated deli section. It’s packaged in a plastic tub. If you can’t find it, substitute a fresh mozzarella ball. Goat cheese would also work with the roasted grapes.
Roasted Grapes with Burrata
- 1/4 pound grapes, I prefer black, purple, or red for this recipe
- 1 teaspoon canola oil
- 8-ounce ball Burrata cheese or fresh mozzarella
- 2 teaspoons honey
- 2 teaspoons balsamic vinegar
- toasted bread, crackers
- Rinse grapes under running water. Pat dry with paper towel.
- Heat oven to 425°F.
Cover baking sheet with parchment paper or silicone mat. Lay grapes on pan and drizzle with oil. Pull stems off grapes. Roast 25 minutes or until grapes are soft, wrinkled, and slumped.
Drain Burrata ball. Place on plate. Spoon warm grapes over cheese. Drizzle honey and balsamic over. Serve with toasted bread or crackers.
Recipe by Judy Barbe
Judy Barbe is a registered dietitian, speaker and author of “Your 6-Week Guide to LiveBest: Simple Solutions for Fresh Food & Well-Being.” Visit her website www.LiveBest.info for every day food solutions.