Holidays are that time of the year when everybody forgets about being disciplined for a moment. It’s all about exaggeration – how much we buy, how often we go out and throw parties, how much we eat.
Still, eating healthy during the holidays and maintaining the same weight isn’t as impossible as it seems. You can manage to maintain a healthy diet and still feel the holiday spirit with a couple of these tricks.
1. SMALL PORTIONS
You already know that holiday meals often comprise of several courses. This doesn’t have to be a big problem if you limit yourself to smaller portions of each course. You may be a person that won’t eat two pieces of cake but will allow yourself to eat a bigger portion of what you think is healthy. Still, you should have in mind one thing – even healthy food has calories in it and going overboard with won’t do you any good. As long as you stick to rational portions, no matter how nutrient-rich the food is, it isn’t going to be a problem to enjoy the cake later on.
2. NO SKIPPING MEALS
Don’t even think of skipping a meal to save your appetite for a big dinner in the evening. This will probably end up with you overeating with everything that’s on the table and enjoying a double portion of the cake. Breakfast is the most important meal of the day, especially during the holidays. People who have regular breakfast tend to eat fewer calories throughout the rest of the day. It should consist of fruit and vegetables, as well as whole grains. Food that’s rich in fiber will satisfy your feeling of hunger, so that’s another reason you should have your regular healthy meals.
3. RESORT TO LITTLE TRICKS
There are a few tricks you can use in order to avoid overeating. First of all, you can use a smaller plate, which will automatically reduce your portion. When you start filling your plate with food, put vegetables and salad first, and then move on to the entrees. You can also try eating a salad before the actual meal starts – it could ease the feeling of hunger before you overstuff yourself with heavy food. Also, remember that the holidays are the time when you are supposed to enjoy – so, eat slowly and enjoy every bite. It will also make you feel full in time, before you overeat. Also, if you feel the need to continue eating, wait for some 10 minutes – it will help you determine if you are really still hungry.
4. HEALTHY APPROACH
Many people think that holiday food always means also unhealthy and heavy food. Well, it doesn’t have to be that way – there is plenty of different food perfect for holidays that aren’t rich in calories. First of all, you need to fill your fridge with raw vegetables that are usually used for salads and platters. Another way of reducing calories is to use balsamic vinegar or lemon instead of dressings rich with fat. The quality of meat will also make difference – healthy and quality meat will depend on the right animal nutrition, so do your research before you buy certain meat. Also, don’t go overboard with cheese – you don’t need more than two ounces.
5. PLAY WITH SIDE DISHES
Side dishes can not only add to the colors and flavors of your meals but they will also serve as healthy parts of the meal. Use fresh and wholesome vegetables to make the side dishes as appealing as desserts and entrees. You can roast vegetables until they caramelize and then spread some toasted walnuts over it and spice it up with kalamata olives or balsamic vinegar. If you intend to make mashed potatoes, don’t fill them with cream or butter but with fresh herbs or roasted garlic. Alternatively, you can use a small amount of strong cheese to enrich the taste.
6. ENJOY THE RIGHT KIND OF DESSERT
No need for you to give up the dessert, simply make sure it’s rich with fresh fruit. You can also find lighter recipes online and make a change compared to traditional desserts. It will make the holiday meals interesting – you’ll get to experiment with something different and yet have your portion of sweet dessert.
ALL IN ALL
As long as you keep in mind these tricks, you will get the best out of the holidays without getting more weight.