We hope your holidays are filled with love, joy, and healthy eating choices!
Holidays bring family and friends together to celebrate traditions and spread good cheer. They also bring lots of opportunities for socializing, eating, and drinking. Even the most disciplined people struggle with temptation during the holiday season.
So here are few effective strategies to sail through the holidays are guilt free:
Stay in control at holiday: Eat before dinner something small like an apple or a banana. By doing so, you will avoid overeating and snacking.
- Plan your snacks in advance so you could enjoy your holiday favorites and still stay on track. Pre-pack your snacks or just say I’ll have one piece of sweets tonight.
- Stick to your diet plan – make the occasional party or family dinner the exception to your diet, not the rule. As long as you get back to your diet, the next day you are fine. Don’t let 1 or 2-holiday events be the excuse for falling off the wagon. Continue doing what have you done so far to make progress toward your goals. Why should the holiday days be any different?
- If you go to a dinner or a party:
- Bring a healthy dish to share– like steamed vegetables or a green salad, strawberries, fresh organic fruit salad and just eat slowly!
- Drink as little alcohol as possible- alcohol a high-calorie drink. I was surprised to find how high. For example, a regular beer has 150 calories; light beer, 100; a glass of wine – 120; a shot of alcohol – 100. Spiked eggnog – 300 calories, and most cocktails are 250-300 calories. By adding it to your meal, you might consume over 1000 calories which are almost 60% of your daily food intake.
- Drink water – tap water: keep up a glass of water by you at all times. Sip in between bites.
- Tell your friends and family you are working to achieve a weight loss goal. So they understand and support your food choices.
- If you could serve individual plates filled with foods and not in bowls or platters you will cut the chances of going back for seconds especially when you are no longer hungry.
- If you could plan the holiday dinner earlier in the evening or later in the afternoon, you could save the calories on appetizers and cocktails you would normally eat before. Not to mention the possibility to combine lunch with dinner into a larger meal as you would consume fewer calories over the entire day.
- Plan your next day – even if you had a big dinner the night before, eat a small breakfast. Have a bowl of cereal with fresh fruits or slices of bread with cheese and a few cherry tomatoes. By eating breakfast, you are marinating your blood sugar which will prevent you from eating more sweets.
- Maintain your regular workout schedule. Not only will regular exercise help you to burn off the extra calories from all those treats, but it will also help you sleep and manage stress better. If you haven’t established yet your regular workout schedule, take this holiday time as an opportunity and make it happen! Start slowly by walking around your block once or twice a day and slowly bring it up. Changes do not occur overnight!
Keeping regular routine in the midst of all the festivities will ground you and keep you focused on your overall health.
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