The Season’s Most Fattening Foods

Dec 14, 2008 | December 2008, Nutrition

By Fran Werner

Ice cream

I scream, you scream, we all scream for ice cream … and unless you’re careful, the calories in these chilly treats add up in a hurry. So forget the toppings, candy mix-ins and waffle cones, and stick with a single scoop of your favorite ice cream. Better yet, choose frozen yogurt or sorbet. At home, stock your freezer with calorie-controlled novelty treats, like ice cream sandwiches or bars, or try the new light ice creams that taste like super-premium brands. Also, the snow cone trailers often have sugar-free (and, thus, calorie-free) options.

Hot dogs

Plain, with chili and cheese, or wrapped in cornbread — go hand-in-hand with football season, tailgate parties, hayrides and bonfires. If you’re going to have one, keep it simple: Top it with relish, and limit it to one dog because hot dogs are not only high in fat but also contain plenty of sodium.

Chocolates and other candies

Show up Halloween and during the holidays, and in some households they’re an everyday treat. Dark chocolate does has some health benefits, but only if you eat a small portion — not an entire bag of trick-or-treats. The health benefits are found with just one ounce. Candy and caramel apples are delicious, but go easy on all sweets, including these.

Topping, dressings and sauces

On otherwise healthy foods can spell diet disaster. Hollandaise sauce on asparagus, whipped cream on strawberries or high-fat salad dressings on salads turn a perfectly healthy food into a high calorie landmine. To keep calories in check, choose lighter versions of your favorite topper, or just add a little dab.

Seasonal beverage

Like ice cream drinks, iced coffee drinks, champagne, hot cocoas with peppermint sticks are favorites for sipping with friends by the fire. But beware: Liquid calories can quickly add up.


Loaded with mayo, such as chicken and potato salad, or Waldorf salad and ambrosia (popular with many families during the holidays) are loaded with fat and calories.

Grilled foods

Cool campfire weather means it’s time to fire up the grill and enjoy grilled foods like burgers, hot dogs, ribs and steaks. Instead, fill your grill with items that are lower in fat: Why not grill poultry, fish, lean meats, fruit and veggies?

Fran Werner is a certified lifestyle and weight management consultant, a certified personal trainer, and a certified lifestyle coach, specializing in weight management.  She has been the owner/director of Lifestyle Consulting since 1981, and has maintained an office in Austin, Texas since 1993.  Fran has helped thousands of individuals achieve and maintain healthy weights and healthy lifestyles. You can contact her at (512) 794-3848 or at Visit her Website, Fran’s weight management program is now available on CD, . 

South Texas Fitness & Health