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Healthy Holidays: Total Health Entertaining All Year Round
by Marilu Henner
2002

Actress Marilu Henner's Healthy Holidays is not merely a cookbook - it's a fun guide to healthy entertaining, organized by holiday. And, being festive, Henner is ready to celebrate just about any holiday, including Earth Day, Bastille Day, Chinese New Year's and, of course, Academy Awards night (you'll find more traditional holidays such as Easter, Fourth of July and Thanksgiving too). The menus are mostly prepared in line with Henner's guidelines from her book Total Health Makeover, which means no dairy products, red meat or refined sugar and, whenever possible, food combining. But these dishes are anything but austere - for example, check out the chocolate treats in the Valentine's Day section or the myriad of savory stuffings for Thanksgiving. There are also THM versions of several alcoholic beverages. Henner understands that holidays were meant for indulgence and is willing to break some of her own rules, at least a little, to create a sumptuous spread that will please any palate, even those who don't care a whit about eating healthy.

The menus, however, are only part of the story here. Henner also offers up a lot of entertainment suggestions, including invitations, toasts, decor and musical ideas. She even tells you the number of calories burned for various activities (some of the counts, however, are probably the result of an active imagination - according to the list in the Valentine's Day chapter, "dirty dancing" burns exactly twice as many calories as regular dancing). How you feel about Henner's party suggestions depends on your sense of fun - some people like to organize activities for their fetes; others may prefer their parties more freeform and less planned. Either way, you're bound to discover something about each holiday that you didn't know before (did you know that it was the Irish who brought Halloween to America?), and you get Henner's chatty, easy-to-read style. Plus you get a load of holiday recipes that are both delicious and guilt-free.

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