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Feed Your Face: A Thanksgiving Side That's Good for Your Skin — and Your Waistline

By Dr Jessica Wu

My favorite part of Thanksgiving is the sides. In fact, I wouldn’t mind skipping the turkey altogether.The problem, however, is that many traditional sides are starchy, so they’re high on the glycemic index and loaded with carbs, meaning that they can worsen acne, aggravate rashes, and speed the breakdown of collagen in your skin -- not to mention that they can cause you to become bloated and to store fat. If you’re cooking this year, try to make at least one side that’s less deadly. Here’s a yummy recipe from Week One of my Feed Your Face meal plan:

My Feed Your Face Stuffed Peppers
6 medium-sized red, yellow, and/or orange bell peppers
1 tbsp olive oil
1 pound extra lean ground beef (or ground turkey or Italian sausage; or 2 cups couscous or quinoa for a meatless version)
2 tbsp chopped red onion
1–2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1/2 cup cooked kidney beans
1 cup cooked brown or wild rice
1 cup tomato sauce (no sugar added)
2 tsp dried parsley or fresh chopped parsley
1–2 tsp crushed red pepper flakes
Salt and pepper to taste

Slice the tops off the bell peppers. Cut a thin slice from the bottoms if needed to help them stand upright.

Heat olive oil and sauté meat with onion and garlic over medium heat until brown. (Skip this step if using couscous or quinoa.)

Remove meat from heat and stir in kidney beans, rice, tomato sauce, parsley, and pepper flakes. Season mixture with salt and pepper to taste and spoon into peppers. Place peppers in a baking dish and bake at 375 degrees for 45 minutes to an hour, or until peppers are tender and brown at the edges.

Send me the recipe for your favorite healthy side dish to This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it . I’ll share the best ones in an upcoming newsletter; if I choose yours, you’ll win a signed copy of Feed Your Face!

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