Eating Tips for Surviving the Holidays

The holiday season is a fun time of year where family and friends get together and celebrate different traditions.  However, as we all know, many of these holiday traditions center around eating and drinking – tempting some of us to overindulge a bit.  Here are a few eating tips to help you avoid self-destructing over the holidays, especially if you’re trying to lose weight.

 

Have a Game Plan

Holiday Eating TipsWhen arriving at parties and gatherings, try scoping out what your food options are ahead of time .  That way you can develop a strategy for making wiser choices when it comes time to eat.  A buffet table is pretty much an invitation to eat like there’s no tomorrow, but having a good idea of what you want (and don’t want) in advance gives you a much better chance to avoid overeating.  Tip: Spend your calories wisely and enjoy!

 

Pay Attention to Portion Sizes

Be sure to select small portions of the foods you choose, especially when at a buffet table.  Buffets are dangerous because most people end up shoveling enough food for two onto a single plate.  Simply take a small spoonful or two of the items you really want and quickly move along – no going back for seconds!  If you don’t trust yourself doing that, try using a smaller plate. Using a salad or appetizer plate instead of a regular size dinner plate will drastically cut the number of calories you can load onto it.  Remember:  Keep the portions small & you should be able sample most items you want without exploding.

 

Choose Holiday Treats Wisely

Whether it’s an office party or a family gathering, odds are there’ll be many holiday treats staring at you.  Brownies, cakes, cookies – you can bet they’ll all be there.  And to suggest that you take a pass on everything would be pretty unrealistic and naive of me.  But here’s what I do suggest:  Choose only the items that you truly enjoy and savor and skip everything else.  Don’t be munching on your sister-in-law’s sugar cookies if you don’t like them.  Instead, save the calories for a slice of Aunt Becky’s carrot cake that you’ve been waiting all year for.  Enough said – you get the picture.

 

Watch Your Beverages

Here’s where you can really get clocked on the calorie meter, especially if you indulge in alcoholic beverages.Holiday Eating Tips1  First off, be on the lookout for the popular holiday cocktails that are made with eggnog and other high calorie mixes – they’re loaded with empty calories. You’re better off avoiding them or sampling them in small quantities.  Hey, there’s nothing wrong with enjoying a cocktail or two at a holiday gathering.  But if you’re watching your weight, you definitely want to keep your alcohol consumption “in check.”  Tip: Stick with water or other low calorie beverages – you can’t go wrong!

 

Don’t Skip Your Workouts

Ok – it’s not exactly an eating tip, but I’m including this one.  Whatever you do, don’t use “the holidays” as an excuse to blow off your workouts (especially if you’re a client of mine!)  Trust me – convincing yourself that you’re just too busy during the holiday season and you’ll start back up after New Years is a mistake – especially if you’re considering this at Thanksgiving.  Before you know it, 4 to 6 weeks go by without exercising, putting you way behind the eight ball come January.  Remember: Cutting a few workouts short because of holiday obligations won’t make a difference, but not doing them at all will – it’s just not worth it.

 

 

The next time you’re at a holiday gathering, be sure to keep these tips in mind.  At the very least, they should help you get through the holiday season with minimal damage done to your weight loss efforts.

Final thought:  Be sure to focus more on the people you’re with and less on the food and drink – you’ll be much better off!

I hope that helps,

Paul

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