It’s that time of year–the holiday season. That means plenty of reuniting, entertaining, and of course, eating. Whether you’re on the road or at party, here are my tips for not overdoing it this year.
- Plan time for exercise: As we all tend to be a bit busier during this time of year, be sure to stick to your regular exercise routine as much as possible. Exercise helps relieve holiday stress and prevent weight gain. A moderate and daily increase in exercise can help partially offset increased holiday eating.
- Hold the Cocktail: The average adult consumes about 100 calories worth of alcohol daily- enough to pack on 10 lbs. per year! Keep a tally of how many drinks you are consuming at parties. Mixers tend to be the most offensive: egg nog, cocoa, cream, all make the appearance in party punches. Choose champagne, wine, or light beer instead.
- Plant yourself away from the table: Even if you head a party with the best of intentions, standing near the buffet table with test anyone’s willpower. Make a plate and step away. Enjoy your food, and then ask yourself if you are truly hungry for more before getting seconds
- Be Mindful: Dining in a group causes the average person to eat about 44 % more calories than he or she normally would eating alone – so many distractions during eating time usually add up to more eating.
- Pick Favorites: Choose carefully between foods you definitely will eat, those you will sample, and those you will skip. Fill up on low-calorie, nutrient dense foods and enjoy a small sampling of your favorite treats. This way you still enjoy your favorite foods without consequences later. Eat until you are satisfied, not stuffed. Savor your favorite holiday treats while eating small portions. Sit down, get comfortable, and enjoy.
- Plate everything before you eat. Even if you go back to the snack table several times, you’ll be more aware of how much your eating if you see it all on a plate.
- Focus on the true meaning of the holidays. Gifts, parties, and the food are backseat items to the true reason of the season, (whatever that means to you). Enjoy time with family and friends and plan gatherings that doesn’t involve food. Meet up to run a 5K for charity, decorate wreaths, make homemade gifts, organize a dog-walking party- what have you been meaning to do but haven’t found time for?