The holiday season is a time of celebration, which often goes hand in hand with high-calorie indulgences. Getting through the holidays while sticking to your diet may seem like a daunting task. Fortunately, we’ve compiled a list of tips to help you stay on track.
Holiday eating tip #1: Bring your own food (BYOF)
When you attend a holiday party, bring a festive, yet low-calorie, dish to share. In all likelihood, most of the food served at the party will be high in sugar, salt, or fat. Having a healthy alternative on hand can keep you from reaching for the cheese dip. For example, a healthier alternative to cream-based fruit dip is low-fat whip cream. Mix the low-fat whip cream with a sugar-free powder Jello mix in the flavor of your choice, and serve with raw apple slices. Garnish the tray with mint leaves for added holiday cheer.
Holiday eating tip #2: Eat slowly and consciously
You don’t have to avoid all social situations in which high-calorie food will be served, and it may not always be possible to bring your own food or eat beforehand. Furthermore, avoiding these types of situations can feel isolating and is often demotivating. So, when enjoying the occasional holiday fare, take your time and concentrate on each bite. Relish in the taste, texture, and smell. The act of chewing releases endorphins and helps you feel satisfied even if you’ve only eaten a small amount.
Holiday eating tip #3: Slip into your skinny jeans once a week
Even if you don’t plan to wear them for the entire day, slip into your skinny jeans once every week. Concentrate on how they feel. Are they tight or do they fit perfectly? Take a mental note of this feeling. It may seem like a strange ritual to perform on a weekly basis, but it’s only for a few weeks, and will serve as a vivid and tactile reminder of your weight loss goals.
Holiday eating tip #4: Keep communal office snacks out of view
Vendors, clients, and co-workers always seem to show up with high-calorie snacks around this time of year. Often, these snacks are placed in highly trafficked areas within the office, which leads to mindless snacking. Before you know it, you have eaten four handfuls of caramel popcorn, and yet, you are still hungry for lunch. If you overindulge once or twice, it’s not the end of the world. But you can (and should) avoid making this part of your daily routine simply by placing the snacks in a cabinet that is out of view. Co-workers who wish to snack can still do so, but the snacks are not sitting in plain view, tempting you.
Eating and drinking often go hand-in-hand with holiday celebration, but that doesn’t mean you have to abandon your health goals to participate in the festivities. Follow these four simple tips and ring in the year as a new, better you!
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