It’s the most difficult time of the year to stay healthy. Pecan pies, deep fried turkeys, and endless appetizers, the holidays can cause eating to quickly get out of control.
“Often times I feel like people think of the holidays like that big meal has to be every day. Keep it as a special occasion. Keep it that one day,” said Erika Graziani, a dietitian with Lee Health. She says there are ways to prevent holiday weight gain. Tip one: portion control. “Be mindful of how much is on my plate? Listen to your hunger and full signals.”
If you’re going to a holiday party filled with food have a plan before you arrive. “If you walk in there’s a table of food, just a big spread, I would advise to take a look first before you start putting food on your plate,” said Graziani.
When gearing up for a big meal, health experts say don’t skip meals throughout the day. Make sure you’re eating light meals and snacks so you don’t go into a party starving. Also, plan in advance what you will and will not allow yourself to eat or drink. “Even though it’s the holidays, I would still advise no more than a drink a day for women, two drinks for men,” said Graziani.
A helpful party tip: grab a glass of water to carry around throughout the night. Not only will it keep you hydrated it will also keep one hand occupied, making mindless snacking more difficult.
“If it is time to get appetizers, take a little beverage napkin and use that to keep a little food on because you can’t put as much food on it,” said Graziani.
If you’re preparing a holiday dish, try adding low fat substitutions to make it a little lower in calories. “Decrease how much butter and sugar you’re using. You can use low fat versions of sour cream or cream cheese,” said Graziani.
Most importantly, try to maintain your exercise routine over the holidays. This will help you feel better and prevent weight gain.
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Lee Health in Fort Myers, FL is the largest network of health care facilities in Southwest Florida and is highly respected for its expertise, innovation and quality of care. For more than 100 years, we’ve been providing our community with personalized preventative health services and primary care to highly specialized care services and robotic assisted surgeries. Lee Health - Caring People. Inspiring Care.