Don't let comfort eating get the best of you this winter. Instead, pack your diet with healthy options to boost your health and fill your belly.
As cooler weather hits Australia shores, you'll no doubt be tempted to pull out the red wine and comfort food to help ease the pain of darker nights and chilly temperatures.
However, winter eating isn't always kind to your waistline, and a year of hard work can easily be undone by some poor food choices. Take a look at these healthy yet comforting foods to incorporate into your healthy meal plans this winter.
If you can't get your hands on fresh, whole pomegranates, try the juice form. Pomegranate juice is rich in antioxidants, and experts believe these may help to prevent free radicals from oxidising LDL ("bad") cholesterol, leading to improved heart health. Oxidised LDL can lead to plaque buildup in the arteries.
Drink the juice on its own or add the fruit to salads with avocado, almonds, pears and walnuts.
Salmon and other fish rich in omega-3 fatty acids such as EPA and DHA should be added to your diet year-round, but especially during winter.
Omega-3s are well known for their inflammation-reducing properties, which can help prevent people from getting sick. They're also linked to a reduction in depression symptoms, helping people beat those winter blues.
If you don't like or can't source fish, try walnuts, flax seeds and chia seeds. Leafy greens like spinach are also high in omega-3s, so if you're really craving those fatty acids you may even want to prepare a salad made up of salmon, walnuts and spinach!
While potatoes have a bad reputation for being starchy and carbohydrate-heavy, they're actually a whole food that contain many nutritional benefits, as well as being incredibly comforting during those cooler months. They contain vitamins C and B6, and are a good source of folate and fibre. Purple potatoes are particularly beneficial as they contain antioxidants called anthocyanins that can help to lower the risk of cancer and heart disease.