Healthy Holiday Eating Tips (Part 1-5 of 10)

The holiday season is upon us. You’ve worked so hard to get into shape and the temptations can be overwhelming. Now is the time to create a plan that will allow you to enjoy your holiday favorites without blowing all of your previous efforts. The following tips will help you plan your strategy and avoid packing on the pounds this holiday season!

1. Eat before the party. The idea of saving calories by not eating throughout the day and indulging later does not work. You’ll be famished the time arrives and run the risk of binge eating at the party. Have a mini-meal containing a small portion of protein and carbohydrate (ex. a cheese stick, low sugar piece of fruit, Greek yogurt, or protein bar) an hour or so before you leave.

2. Ensure one healthy option will be available. Offer to bring a healthy dish such as a protein, fruit or vegetable tray or a low fat/low calorie dessert, which will guarantee you a favorite dish that you can enjoy.

3. Move throughout the party. If you are socializing with friends or family, pick areas far from the food buffet. This will prevent you from unconscious nibbling, which could impact your goals to maintain your weight.

4. Limit or Avoid beverages with calories. Holiday drinks and alcoholic beverages are loaded with calories (up to 500 calories per 8 oz serving).   Use sugar free products like seltzer water, flavored waters and other sugar-free drinks and drink mixes to avoid those unnecessary calories. Alternating your holiday beverages with a glass of water will help with your urges to sip.

5. Always use a plate and utensils. Finger foods are easy to unconsciously over-consume . Place all of your food selections onto a plate and use utensils to eat whenever possible. And DO NOT feel obligated to eat everything on your plate, especially if the taste is unappealing or it’s not one of your favorites. Read tips 6-10.