The holiday season is a “warm and fuzzy” time of year where we reflect on the people, places and things we are grateful for. But on the other hand, it’s a period often associated with tasty and bountiful food, big family dinners around the table and “lovin’ from the oven.”
If you are trying to manage your weight, the holidays can also bring feelings of anxiety or concern. After all, how can you practice moderation when the holidays themselves are so food-centric?
We’re here to tell you that it’s possible to have a happy AND healthy holiday season. All you need is a game plan that you start enforcing the night before (or even a couple days!).
Moderation and Holidays
First, focus on the reason for the season. While yummy food is a big bonus, the holidays are about gratitude and being with loved ones. Don’t let your holiday menu or numerous trips to the supermarket get the better of you. Those things are fleeting. Here are some additional tips:
The acronym stands for bites, licks and tastes. Small portions add up! Instead of sampling every dish before it’s on the table, be mindful of your BLT’s and only choose a few of them.
A Little Goes a Long Way
If there’s a lot to choose from on your holiday table, take small portions of your favorite dishes. Your plate doesn’t have to disappear underneath it all.
Solids vs Liquids
There’s obviously calories in your favorite holiday dishes, but they exist in alcohol, too. If you choose to indulge in spirits, be mindful of how they add up alongside your dinner plate. If you want lighter alternatives, consider zero-calorie sodas or juices as mixers.
Eat before the Big Meal
Some people fast before holiday dinners to save room or cut calories. The advice here is… don’t! Fasting may lead you to overindulge on appetizers or even main dishes. Make sure you eat a light, healthy breakfast and have a nutritious dinner the night before, too.
Avoid What’s Always Available
If there are dishes on your holiday table that you can always eat, consider avoiding those in favor of more unique dishes which are exclusive to the holidays. Prioritize!
Our eyes are often bigger than our stomachs. No matter what you put on your plate, eat slowly and give your stomach time to catch up. You may want to “finish” your meal early.
Relax and Enjoy!
Remember that the holidays are meant to be relaxing. You should be able to enjoy tasty dishes, but most of all, you should be able to enjoy time with loved ones. As long as you are cautious and mindful of what goes into your body, the rest will fall into place.