Eating Healthy? 10 Tips for Handling the Holidays
There’s no way to avoid reality: Eating healthy during the holidays can be a Herculean challenge. Whether you’re following a low-sodium diet or you’re simply trying to avoid packing on pounds, these easy tips will help you sail through the holidays with ease:
- Eat breakfast every day. A number of studies show that people who eat breakfast are better able to resist overeating throughout the day.
- Research the menu. When you’ve been invited to a party or home-cooked meal, inquire nicely about what type of food will be served. Once this was considered rude, but in today’s environment so many people are following specific eating plans the rules are more relaxed. If you’re meeting at a restaurant, research menu offerings online and decide in advance which options are appropriate for you.
- Eat healthy things first. From broth-based soups to salads and vegetables, consume the healthiest items first. This will take the edge off your appetite, which will help you make wiser choices throughout the meal or event.
- Move away from temptation. At parties, stand far away from goody-laden serving buffets. At the table, pass hard-to-resist items like breadbaskets to someone at the far end of the table to put temptation out of easy reach.
- Take food. For casual parties and family gatherings, take a dish that you enjoy and that also meets your dietary preferences. That way, you’ll have at least one thing you can consume guilt-free.
- Carry emergency rations. Stash suitable snacks and diet-worthy noshables in your desk, briefcase, backpack, purse or pocket. This ensures you have a supply of appropriate foods readily at hand whenever and wherever temptation strikes.
- Eat before you leave. You don’t need to stuff yourself, but eat a healthy snack or appetizer before you leave home or work. You’ll be less likely to grab the first tempting tidbits you encounter at parties and events.
- Fill your plate. Wisely. Devote the most real estate to foods that suit your eating program, and reserve a small section for samplings of dishes you simply can’t resist. The full plate sends a visual cue you’re not denying yourself, the savvy balance assures you’re sticking to your eating plan.
- Find a partner. You don’t have to go it alone. At meals, sit next to another healthy eater. At parties, hang out with those who are also dealing with dietary issues.
- Forgive and move on. Temptations abound during the holidays. If you fall off the healthy eating wagon, forgive yourself and start fresh the next day.