It that time of the year when family, food and fun times all meet. While getting lost in the time, it’s easy to not pay attention to what your eating. Contrary to popular belief, you won’t gain five pounds from the holidays and over eating. In fact, most people only gain 1 to 2 pounds over the weeks before and after Christmas. That may not sound like a lot, but this extra weight usually stays with the carrier for life. If this weight is allowed to accumulate from year-to-year, it can result in being overweight or obese.
Here are some ways to avoid unintentionally sabotaging yourself during the holidays this year.
- Skip the appetizers. It’s easy to sit by a bowl and munch while you talk to someone, but most of the food that makes a quick snack are going to be loaded with calories.
- The eye knows best. While piling up your plate, try to avoid any dishes that have a sauce or cream on them and anything that looks fried. Instead go for food that is prepared to be eaten all by itself.
- Eat more food? Before you go to the party, have a quick snack. Vegetables and fruits are low in calories and will have you feeling less hungry when you get to the party, helping you avoid overeating.
- Simple substitutes. If you are the cook, you can be sneaky and help everyone out. Substituting one ingredient for another can shave off calories and still keep the same flavor. Use applesauce instead of oil or use more veggies than bread in stuffing. Refrigerate creams and gravies to skim the fat off the top. Try removing the skin on any turkey or chicken served.
- Cutting weight. Don’t try to lose weight during the holidays, instead try and maintain your current weight. Not seeing results can hurt your mindset and make you more likely to ditch any restraint or dieting plan.
- Socialize. The goal of the holidays isn’t to eat, it’s to meet up with family. Try doing other activities with them instead of eating. Games and crafts go over well because almost everyone can participate.