Written by Erika Kraus
For many of us, the holidays mean spending time with loved ones, spreading warmth and cheer, and of course… eating delicious foods that are often only served once a year!
With so many tempting dishes and treats around for the holidays, it is easy to derail your healthy eating habits. Here are a few healthy eating tips for the holidays that you can feel guilt-free about, while still enjoying the season to its fullest.
1. Don’t fast before a party
Fasting,or skipping meals before a holiday party is not the best approach to fully enjoy your holiday meals. Sometimes we think that skipping meals beforehand will give us “extra room” to enjoy more food. Then we end up overindulging or binge eating, which is not healthy. According to the Huffington Post, skipping meals can actually cause your blood sugar to drop, and can cause cognitive and emotional effects, like moodiness. So remember to eat earlier meals, or squeeze in some healthy snacks before you go!
2. Smart Buffet Eating
Buffets:endless tables with multitudes of food options, which can often cause us to overeat. If you’re like me, and your eyes are always bigger than your stomach…you may overload your plate, and end up wasting food. To avoid this: first grab a smaller plate. With less space to fill up, you will eat less. Next, take your time. Walk around the table to see your options – don’t just fill up on the first food you see. Also, look for healthy options hidden among the cookies and cakes. Make a colorful plate – fill up with some fruits and vegetables!
3. Treat wisely
Eat your treats wisely. Sometimes we eat the first treat we see, even if we don’t really enjoy them. Make your desserts count. Be choosy: check out all of your dessert options, and choose your favorite. Or take a small portion of a few treats, so that you can still try them all. Don’t feel guilty about enjoying treats over the holidays. But remember, treat wisely.
4. Know your drinks
Yummy, festive drinks can’t be forgotten either. According to Harvard Health: “A glass of eggnog can set you back 500 calories; wine, beer, and mixed drinks range from 150 to 225 calories. If you drink alcohol, have a glass of water or juice-flavored seltzer in between drinks.” It can be easy to forget that our drinks have calories too. Try to keep this in mind and alternate alcoholic drinks with non-alcoholic drinks, or use low calorie seltzers in mixed drinks.
5. Spread the love
With cookie swaps, fruit baskets, and treats from work, you may find a plethora of holiday treats on your table. Instead of trying to eat all of those treats by yourself, spread the love! Bring treats with you to your next party, or consider sharing those food items at local soup kitchens, food banks, or fire departments. Sharing with others will spread the spirit of the holidays.
Hopefully you can give these tips a try during this holiday season! On behalf of CBRC, we wish you a happy, healthy holiday!