Let’s face it – the holiday season, while joyous in its celebration, is a train wreck for your waistline. Between cookies, stuffing, and booze, our bodies see more calories than any other point in the year!
I’ve employed my own “tricks of the trade” over the last couple of years and I’d like to share them with you today.
1. Bring your own item to the meal
Many holiday party require you to bring your own food item(s) to the get together. Instead of the usual unhealthy items people tend to bring (stuffing, turkey, mashed potatoes, sugar filled cranberry sauce, etc.), try some Ginger-Chile Roasted Acorn Squash or Sweet Potato Stacks with Sage Browned Butter, or any of these other Cooking Light holiday recipe ideas: Ultimate Holiday Cookbook Recipes
2. Eat before you go to your Christmas or New Year’s party
If you eat prior to arriving at the party you will not only feel more full upon arrival (re: leading to better eating); you will have better control in what you ingest.
3. Log your food
This is absolutely KEY for me. By logging all my food (I prefer MyFitnessPal) I am accountable to myself and am better able to control my basic impulse to eat unhealthy foods.
4. Control your portion sizes
Easier said than done, right? My recommendation – grab the small plate, fork, and spoon at the table and try to keep portion sizes smaller than what you can fit in the palm of your hand.
5. Drink lots of water
Water is calorie free and the more I drink the fuller I tend to feel. Plus, it’s a great alternatives to calorie filled alcoholic beverages.
6. Eat your food slowly
All information I have read points to the fact that it takes your brain 20 minutes to register when you are full. Therefore, if you eat slowly, your body is better able to perceive when it is time to stop eating.
7. Stay away from the snack table(s)
This is a big one for me. If I see lots of unhealthy snacks and they are within arms reach it is very, VERY hard to resist eating them. So, just stay away from them! Or, even better, bring your own healthy snacks to try and curb cravings for unhealthy foods.
8. Pick and choose your (food) battles
It’s the holidays! Everybody deserves to eat *something* that fits in the “other” food group! So, go to the party, pick out what that unhealthy food will be, and have some. Just try to minimize the quantity. You don’t want to over do it!
This is key. On days you know you will be eating poorly be sure to exercise, exercise, and exercise some more! Remember – it takes a 3500 calorie surplus to gain 1 pound. So, try to minimize that surplus even more by exercising in order to burn off some of the excess calories you will undoubtedly be consuming.
There you go – my first blog post, and it’s the end of the year (lol). All the best to you and yours and I’ll see you in 2018!