Healthy Eating During The Holidays

The holidays are a time of celebration when we get together with our immediate family and make some of our favorite holiday foods. But all of these opportunities also present us with food temptations that are sure to expand our waistline, if we over indulge. I went ahead and put together some strategies for maintaining a balance of healthier foods, with all of our holiday favorites for you!

  • Enjoy favorites in smaller portions
    • ‚ÄčTake a small piece or split it with someone
      • Try bite sized portions of favorite deserts
  • Eat slower
    • Chew thoroughly, so you don’t overeat
  • Pass on seconds
    • Or choose from the veggie tray
  • Eat only until you are full
    • Make a plate for later so you don’t feel like you missed out on stuffing yourself
  • Splurge specifically
    • Make your rounds first, then check out what is available to tempt your taste buds
    • Choose your favorites and let the rest be.
  • Mindful eating
    • Make each bite a taste sensation
      • Savor your chosen foods and really appreciate, the look, taste, smell, and texture. You will find that you are much more satisfied
  • Eat more moderately at home
    • Allows you to indulge a little when going to gatherings.
  • Eat small amounts of high calorie foods
    • Like fried foods and those with lots of cream and cheese
  • Watch the added sugars and alcohol in beverages and holiday dishes
    • Try sugar free or lower sugar options of drinks like eggnog, hot chocolate, hot apple cider
    • Remove the alcohol and act like a kid
    • Drink sparkling water or tea sweetened with a little fruit juice
    • Substitute whole milk for low-fat or skim and skip the whipped cream
      • Reduce the amount of sugar used in entrees and desserts or replace with herbs/spices
  • Chose light meat over dark
    • Make a turkey instead of a ham
  • Go easy on the gravy and the stuffing
    • Gravy has a lot of saturated fat, sodium if packaged, and calories
    • Stuffing is meant to be a complement not an entrée. Think ¼ cup
  • Skip the snacks
    • Avoid graving before the main meal or chose from lighter snacks like fruits and vegetables
  • Don’t go hungry
    • Eat a healthy snack/meal before gatherings to decrease your appetite

I know that it is easier said than done, but I also know that you can do it! You’ll thank yourself after the Holidays. We know this year will look different with COVID-19, but have a nice meal with your family at home and have a ZOOM or Skype meeting to interact with friends and relatives. And remember, moderation is the key. Happy eating!