Tips for Healthy Holiday Eating

The holidays are in full swing, which means lots of family, fun…and FOOD! But it doesn’t have to mean extra pounds. Even holiday treats can fit into a healthy eating plan. The key is balance and moderation.

To avoid holiday weight gain, balance the calories you consume with the calories you burn. Physical activity and moderate food choices will help. The tips below are gifts you can give yourself and your family to maintain a healthy lifestyle.

  • Be realistic. Don’t try to lose pounds during the holidays, instead try to maintain your current weight.
  • Overcome the urge to overeat. Standing by the buffet table is temptation to overeat. Remember holiday parties are a time to celebrate with family and friends, not just food.
  • Make sure to watch portion sizes and select one or two of your favorites from the host of tempting foods.
  • Be careful with beverages. Alcohol can lessen inhibitions and induce overeating; non-alcoholic beverages can be full of calories and sugar.
  • Drink plenty of water: alcohol and coffee can dehydrate your body.
  • Don’t skip meals. Before leaving for a party, eat a light snack like raw vegetables or a piece of fruit to curb your appetite. You will be less tempted to over-indulge.
  • Avoid fast food. The holiday season can keep you on the go with little time to prepare meals. Fast food may be handy, but often is high in fat. Prepare and freeze quick, healthy meals ahead of time to stay out of the fast food trap.
  • Plan time for exercise. Exercise helps relieve holiday stress and prevent weight gain.