This can be a wonderful time of year with catching up with friends and family, beautiful lights and holiday parties. Most of these get-togethers typically include food and this time of year has some of the best. Unfortunately, the consistent overindulging at these events, can lead to our clothes feeling a little tight. Here are a few tips on how to enjoy the holidays without weight gain.
1. Eat before you go: Going to a party hungry leads to larger intake and choosing less healthy options. Have a balanced snack or meal of complex carbohydrates and lean protein before you go.
2. Fill up on non-starchy vegetables: Go for the carrots, broccoli and celery first. The fiber in these veggies with help you feel full so you can limit yourself on higher calorie foods. Make sure lean protein is your second pick!
3. Bring a healthy dish: Bring something you know you enjoy and is a healthy option. This prevents you from relying solely on what others prepare.
4. Watch what you drink: Be careful of the punch as it typically packs a great deal of sugar and calories. Alternate one alcoholic beverage and a glass of water. This will help decrease overall consumption.
5. Use a smaller plate: Use a salad or dessert plate for your food. You will often eat less due to our mind playing tricks! This trick works to our advantage though.
6. The 20 Minute Rule: This rule can be especially helpful at buffets or parties where food is always available. Have a serving of food and then wait 20 minutes. If you’re still hungry go back for more, but do a check-in with your body to make sure you’re eating out of hunger and not just out of desire.
Enjoy this wonderful time of year!
Katherine Horner, MS, RD, LD
Surgical Weight Loss Dietitian & Exercise Specialist