8 Tips for Healthy Eating at Holiday Parties
Last time we talked about taking care of yourself during the holidays, and the idea that you can create the holidays any way you like. Hopefully you have started thinking about some ways to do both. As you plan out your month there will probably be at least one or two events you will attend, and this can create a challenge for anyone trying to maintain a healthy eating plan. From decadent desserts to overflowing amounts of casseroles, you may be wondering how to navigate parties without derailing all of your hard work. The good news is that we can help!
Here are eight tips to maintain healthy eating habits at holiday parties.
- Don’t go to a party hungry- that is the worst thing you can do. Have a high protein snack before you go, such as nuts, or cheese and whole grain crackers. This will give you energy and put your hunger at bay so you don’t head straight to the cookie platter when you arrive.
- If you aren’t sure what will be served, bring something healthy to share. Veggies are always a good choice, with hummus, homemade bean dip, or another low fat dip.
- Position yourself a distance from where the food is being served. This will keep you from mindlessly snacking as you socialize and you will have to decide if it is really worth it to navigate all the people in order to get more food.
- Focus on conversation and interactions instead of the food. It isn’t necessary to always have a plate or a glass in your hand.
- When it’s time to eat, fill up your plate with the healthiest items. This will start filling you up before you are tempted by the less healthy choices.
- Think back to our tips on conscious eating. Eat and chew slowly, put your fork down often, and really pay attention to what you are eating and how it tastes. And don’t forget it takes about 20 minutes for your brain to begin sending out signals that you are full.
- If you really want dessert, have it. Simply plan ahead for it rather than eating your fill and then having dessert when you are already full. Eat less of the other offerings so you don’t end up overeating and feeling bloated.
- Limit your consumption of alcohol. This will help keep your sugar intake down, and will allow you to stay focused. If you get even a little bit tipsy your resistance to high calorie foods may wane.
Parties can be a fun time to connect with friends and families, but make sure to celebrate responsibly. If you are going to drink alcohol, plan ahead so you get home safely. Use a designated driver, hire a taxi, or wait an hour or two for each drink you consumed in order to make sure your blood alcohol content is at a point where you can drive. Don’t take chances with yourself or others. We want you to be safe and well for the New Year yet to come!