The year’s most festive season is upon us, and that means plenty of delicious and potentially unhealthy food and drink. Thankfully, you can still enjoy your favorite holiday flavors without derailing your diet and overall healthy lifestyle. Here are some tips that will help you enjoy your favorite holiday foods, no strict calorie counting or deprivation needed.
Strict deprivation has a tendency to lead to unhealthy binging, so have that cookie or piece of pie and enjoy every bite. When you try to cut all of your favorite treats out of your diet, you’ll end up feeling unsatisfied and frustrated (and more likely to binge eat). The key is balance.
Buffets are the ultimate willpower test, especially during the holiday season. If you have a big plate it’s incredibly tempting to fill it, so save yourself from your cravings by using a smaller plate.
And once you’ve gotten your food, step away from the buffet table and get involved in a good conversation.
Vegetables are obviously good for you, but they’ll also help fill you up before you have a chance to scarf down all of those tasty mashed potatoes and butter-laden dinner rolls.
There are lots of healthy, in-season produce options to choose from if you’re tasked with bringing a dish to a holiday party.
Try whipping up one of these unexpected pumpkin recipes, or see what you can make with in-season fruits like pomegranates and kiwis.
It can be tempting to fast all day in preparation of a big meal, but doing so will impact your blood sugar levels, making it more likely that you’ll overeat.
It takes time for your brain to catch up with your stomach, so take it slowly and enjoy your food along with some good conversation. You’ll feel full before you have a chance to eat too much.
Feelings of hunger are often actually caused by dehydration. Making sure to sip plenty of water throughout your holiday events will help keep your appetite and cravings under control.
No one is perfect, especially when it comes to sticking to a healthy eating plan. Rather than beat yourself up, drink some extra water the next day, go for a brisk walk to get some fresh air, and aim to eat healthier and smaller portions next time.