Another holiday season is here! You look forward to this wonderful time of year, but with a little trepidation. You love all the holiday parties and time spent with family and friends, but fear the consequence of overindulging. So how do you make it through the holidays without gaining weight? Is it even possible? Absolutely!
Below are some simple tips to help you survive the holidays without packing on the pounds.
- Do not arrive hungry. Be sure and eat something filling before you go to the party. This way you are less likely over eat.
- Pay close attention to portion sizes. It would be impossible to calculate calories for dishes you did not prepare. So fill your plate with smaller portions and you can enjoy a variety of foods without going overboard.
- If you are attending a party with appetizers, be sure and grab a plate instead of standing at the table and grazing. This way you can visualize the foods and amounts you are consuming.
- If you are still hungry after your first plate of food wait 15-20 minutes before going for seconds. Odds are you will decline.
- Move away from the food table. When you linger around the food you tend to mindlessly snack even when hunger is not an issue.
- Offer to bring a dish. The hostess will love the help and that way you know there are some healthy alternatives.
- Engage in conversation, preferably away from the food. If you are using your mouth to talk then you won’t be free to eat.
- Drink plenty of water before arriving at the party and while consuming your meal or appetizers. This will give you a feeling of fullness and will also quench your thirst, since we often mistake thirst for hunger.
- If you are drinking alcohol, beware of some of the fancy holiday cocktails. Some may have as many as 450 calories. Stick with wine or spirits mixed with soda water, diet tonic or just plain water with lemon or lime. You can also check out these holiday drink makeovers from self magazine that will help reduce empty calories.
- If you plan to have cocktails, alternate one drink with one large glass of water. This will help with overconsumption. Alcohol stimulates the hypothalamus. The hypothalamus is part of the brain that deals with sleep, hunger, rhythm and body temperature. Basically it makes us hungry when we shouldn’t be and in particular for unhealthy foods.
- Put these tips into action and enjoy the holidays without the guilt!
Need a quick and tasty appetizer for your holiday party? We love the recipe below (by Ree Drummond) for bacon wrapped dates, it’s a taste of sweet and savory in one delicious bite! This recipe is quick to prepare, easy to transport, and everyone loves them.
Bacon Wrapped Dates
- 35-40 pitted dates
- 70-80 salted roasted almonds
- 2 lbs thin bacon
- Heat oven to 425 degrees F.
- Stuff each date with 1 to 2 almonds.
- Wrap each date with half a piece of bacon and secure with a toothpick.
- Bake, turning the dates halfway through so the bacon is
evenly cooked, 15 to 18 minutes.
- Serve warm or at room temperature.
Have a safe and wonderful Holiday Season!
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