Friday, December 17, 2010

Healthful Holiday Hints to Help Your Waistline this Season at your Next Holiday Jingle Bell Bash

Healthful Holiday Hints to Help Your Waistline this Season at your Next Holiday Jingle Bell Bash

Many of us are committed to attending or even hosting Holiday parties. We face an array of snacks, desserts, and beverages that fall nothing short of appetizing. Some refrain from temptation while others indulge in the season. Here are a few tips for beating the holiday weight gain.

1. Eat a nutritious snack before the party.
Eating a healthy snack or meal including high protein and fiber (such as an apple with peanut butter or salad with lean protein and low fat dressing) will curve your appetite and help keep you from over-indulging“nibble snacking” while socializing.
2. Prepare a healthy dish. ( meat and cheese or vegetable tray)
Bring something you know you (and others) will be able to enjoy guilt free.
3. Have a plan.
Decide what you will and won’t eat. Perhaps avoid liquid calories such as eggnog or punch or extra toppings like whipping cream and heavy sauces and butter.
4. Preview the buffet.
Check out what is available before making selections. Fill your plate with fresh fruits and veggies, deli meat slices, and low fat cheeses. This way you can enjoy a few of the high calorie and fat treats without wasting calories.
5. Eat slowly.
Don’t eat so fast your stomach does not have time to register you are full. Savor each bite and enjoy the taste of the food.
6. Don’t park.
Mingle!!!! Don’t park in front of the buffet table to avoid constant nibbling.
7. Stay hydrated.
Drink plenty of water between eating and consuming alcoholic (usually higher calorie) beverages. This will help you stay full and control the need to have something in hand.
8. Don’t drink your calories.
Avoid high calorie beverages. An 8 ounce serving of Eggnog contains nearly 350 calories and almost 20 grams of fat while apple cider contains 120 calories with almost 30 grams of sugar. Addition of alcohol only increases these numbers. Try a lower calorie beverage such as a wine spritzer which contains 80 calories for a 4 ounce serving. Add fruit such as cranberries for extra color and flavor.
9. Only eat when you’re hungry.
Before you go back for seconds, assess your hunger. Don’t eat out of boredom. If this problem arises, find another party!
10. Don’t be afraid to say no.
It can be difficult to do when offered delicious holiday foods, but it is the most empowering word to your health and weight loss goals during this time.

Post by Guest Blogger: Marybeth Mitchell, OU Dietetic Intern

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