Making Good Food Choices Over The Holidays

Making Good Food Choices Over The Holidays

Studies show that most Americans gain weight in between Thanksgiving and New Year’s Eve every year. However, it is possible to enjoy the holidays and still maintain some self-control and your current weight. 

One major thing to remember is that it is okay to cheat in moderation. Allow yourself a small  serving of a holiday sweet or some eggnog every 2–3 days, but remember to balance this with eating less at the next meal or skipping your usual afternoon snack. Or you can do 30–40 minutes of aerobic exercise to burn off some of those extra calories!

It may seem counterintuitive to focus on eating fruits and veggies over the holidays, but this can also help you control your hunger in a healthier way than drinking some eggnog or eating Grandma’s famous Christmas cookies. Fruits and vegetables contain more nutrients and fewer calories than you would take in by eating the equivalent amount of snack foods such as chips and crackers. Fruits and vegetables are also full of fiber, which will help give you a satisfied, full feeling much faster than eating snack foods can. 

If you attend a holiday party, be mindful of your food choices. Consider starting with yourself by bringing a healthy appetizer such as a fruit salad, pre-cut raw veggies, or some pita chips with Greek yogurt or hummus for dip. Portion control is just as important – make sure you use smaller plates to naturally reduce your serving sizes. Remember that a party is for socialization, not just to eat. Avoid staying near the food table and grazing throughout the party. Conversation can be just as nourishing and filling as food, but won’t add pounds to your waistline. Another easy way to load up on calories is to drink sugary and/or alcoholic drinks, which are full of calories and sugar, and very low on nutrition. 

Try some of these tips this holiday season to give yourself less work on that New Year’s Resolution in 2023!

This article reviewed by Dr. Jim Liu, MD and Ms. Deb Dooley, APRN.

There’s nothing more important than our good health – that’s our principal capital asset.

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