Holiday Survival Guide: 7 Healthy Ways to Enjoy the Season

December 9, 2009 at 4:29 pm , by

Christmas Dinner

I think diet experts are right when they say your holiday goal should be holding the line on your weight. Trying to actually drop pounds during the eating season takes superhuman self-control (to say nothing of how upset your aunt will be if you don’t have at least one bite of her chocolate pie). Here’s what I’m doing:

Breakfast every day. It keeps the metabolism running and your body out of calorie-saving starvation mode. Include protein to stave off hunger later.

Staying calorie-conscious. Pick the one high-calorie treat you really want at the party and steer clear of the rest. And make your non-holiday meals less caloric than usual.

Wine spritzers. Alcohol has calories: 85 for a 4 oz. glass of wine has 85; 65 for  1 oz. of vodka or scotch and almost 150 in a regular beer. For both health and weight, have no more than one alcoholic drink a day. Steer clear of sweet mixed drinks, especially eggnog. I rely on wine spritzers (wine and sparkling water)—you can have several and end up drinking no more than 4 oz. of alcohol.

Sugar-free gum. Chew some just before you leave for a party; the minty taste will make you feel less like eating when you get there.

Passing the hors d’oeuvres. If you’re holding a big tray of them, you can’t eat them—and it’s a good way to circulate at a party.

Bringing the hors d’oeuvres. The best way to make sure there’s at least one platter of raw veggies with low-fat yogurt dip is to bring it.

Keeping moving. Exercise not only burns calories (not as many as we wish, but some), but lowers your blood sugar.

Come New Year’s I’m going to try to lose 10 lbs. For help, see our weight loss planner.