December is a wonderful time jam-packed with festivals, celebrations and sharing special moments with our families and friends. Whether it is religious tradition, end of school year or work dinners and parties, you are likely to be faced with temptation to indulge at this time of year. Here are my tops tips to keep it a happy and healthy festive season:
- Be picky – don’t deny indulges, but only eat treats that you really love – avoid “wasting” calories on non-favourites. Think quality rather than quantity.
- Find creative, festive, non-food ways to celebrate the holidays.
- There are so many temptations out there (at work, friends, parties, etc.) – so limit the treats available at home.
- Avoid liquid calories from sugary fizzy drinks and alcohol. Best bet: plain or sparkling water.
- Eat until you feel satisfied not “stuffed” – savour every bite.
- If you plan on treating yourself later, start your day with a small, healthy, balanced meal that includes whole grains, fruit, low fat or fat-free dairy and protein.
- Don’t attend a party on an empty stomach – grab a small healthy snack before you go.
- Don’t rush to eat – socialize and settle into the festivities before you eat.
- Move your socializing away from the buffet table or appetizer trays – this will help to limit nibbling.
- Choose to use a smaller plate – this allows you to put less food on your plate and encourages proper portion sizes.
- Start by filling your plate with veggies or salad before going to the entrees and desserts. Let your plate guide you, aim for: ½ plate non-starchy veggies or salads; ¼ whole grains; ¼ protein.
- Continue to be active during the holidays – take the stairs, dance at parties, walk briskly through the shopping mall.