The holidays are here, which usually means our waistlines will grow. From the candy dishes sitting on co-workers desks to the holiday buffets, temptation abounds during the holidays. Most people start the beginning of October with Halloween saying, “It’s the Holidays!” and grab the nearest treat. Sometimes multiple times a day. The holiday season lasts for three months (October 1 – January 1). That’s 1/4 of the year. That’s a big block of time to ignore how much sugar and excess calories we are ingesting. So what are we to do? Here are my secrets to surviving the holidays while maintaining our waistlines.
- DON’T keep a candy dish on your desk! Easy enough but what about our co-workers who keep the tempting sugar on their desk? Keep healthy snacks with you so you are not as tempted by the candy dishes. If possible take a different route to the bathroom so that you don’t have to pass the temptation many times throughout the day.
- SAY NO ONCE at the grocery store! It’s easier to say NO once instead of telling yourself NO each time you open the pantry, refrigerator or freezer.
- Limit to ONE A DAY! Allow yourself one treat each day. Don’t deprive yourself but do limit how many treats (sugar and empty calories) that you allow yourself each day.
- NEVER go to a PARTY HUNGRY! Always, always have something nutritious to eat before you go to a party. This will keep you from munching on everything in sight.
- SMALL PLATE! Avoid the platter size plates and opt for the smaller plates. Try it! You will not feel like you are being deprived if your (small) plate is full!
- AVOID CREAM SAUCES! Look for broth based or veggie sauces. Add a fresh squeeze of lemon to your salad instead of using ranch dressing.
- LIMIT DESSERTS! Go ahead and have a small slice of cake or pie but limit your serving to one a day.
- LIMIT ALCOHOL! Limit your alcoholic drinks to two. Switch to water in between each drink.
- NO SOFT DRINKS! These are full of empty calories. Switch to a sparkling water with a twist of fresh lemon.
- SAY NO POLITELY! No reason to overindulge just because the ‘food pusher’ comes knocking. Use polite phrases like “Everything was delicious! I just simply can’t eat another bite.” You will find saying no isn’t as difficult as you thought.
- FOCUS ON SOCIALIZING! Don’t stand around the buffet table. Focus on making conversations with others. Isn’t that the original intention of the party?
- GET MOVING! One of the most effective ways to maintain or lose body weight is to engage in regular, sustained aerobic activity. This time of year, kick up your exercise a notch to burn off those extra calories.