November and December are often jam packed with holiday parties. From neighborhood gatherings to church potlucks and dinners, these celebrations can add up to thousands of excess calories, but with a few simple tips, you can enjoy the holiday festivities and stay on track with your healthy diet.
Here’s 5 tips to help you enjoy the holidays in a healthy manner. Cheers to that!
1. Choose wisely.
Survey the entire spread first. Take small portions of your favorite dishes, and skip the ones you can live without. It’s okay to enjoy your favorite holiday dishes, just choose small portions and take the time to savor each bite.
Related Post: Quick Guide to Control Portion Sizes
2. Be aware of the biggest diet pitfalls.
Dishes that are cheesy, creamy or crispy, like potatoes au gratin or fried appetizers, are likely high in saturated fat and calories. Sauces and gravies can add calories and fat to otherwise healthy vegetables. Choose one favorite of these more indulgent items, and balance your plate out with lighter options.
3. Slim down your sipper.
Traditional holiday beverages, like eggnog and hot chocolate, can add a few hundred calories to your meal. Instead, choose calorie-free beverages, like water, club soda or sparkling water, and limit alcoholic beverages. Remember that moderate alcohol consumption is defined as one drink per day for women and two drinks per day for men.
4. Give the gift of a healthy choice.
Whether your hosting a party or attending one, you can provide a healthy dish that everyone can enjoy. Bring a vegetable tray with a variety of chopped fresh vegetables and a dip made with low-fat Greek yogurt and herbs or hummus. Trade creamy casseroles for salads made with whole grains like quinoa or wild rice, fresh greens like kale or spinach, seasonal fruits or vegetables, and oil-based dressings. Choose desserts that facilitate portion control, like small cookies or brownies cut into 2-inch squares rather than large layer cakes or pies.
5. Focus on fun, festivities, family and friends.
Instead of letting food become the center of the party, direct your attention to enjoying good times with loved ones and fun seasonal activities – after all, that’s what the holidays are all about!
Remember that finding a healthy balance in your eating day to day is where the true success lies though. If you need help cleaning up your eating habits, try out eMeals Portion Control Plan, Clean Eating, or Low Fat. eMeals takes the guesswork out of what’s for dinner. It’s a simple meal plan system that gives you a week’s worth of meals tailored to how you need to eat. It comes with a complete shopping list and 7 dinner recipes and sides as well as breakfast and lunch options.