If you are worried about ruining your health during the holiday season, then consider these tips for avoiding the bad foods or habits that can lead to gaining weight or increasing your cholesterol level.
Holiday Eating Tip 1: Create Weekly Menu Plans At Home
By creating weekly menu plans at home, you are less likely to overeat. When you create a daily food plan, include snacks and beverages in addition to the standard three meals per day. Make sure to include tasty desserts such as Christmas cookies or fudge in the meal plans so that you won’t feel deprived. Keep a close count of your calories during your meals and snacks to avoid gaining weight throughout the holiday season. If you have health issues such as diabetes mellitus, then make sure to understand the amount of sugar or carbohydrates in the holiday treats served at home.
Holiday Eating Tip 2: Fill Your Plate One Time
When you attend holiday buffets, make sure to fill your plate only one time. As you walk around a buffet table, concentrate on only choosing fresh vegetables and fruits first before selecting a meat such as turkey or ham. Avoid eating large portions of carbohydrate foods such as mashed potatoes, stuffing and noodles. Make sure to have only one dessert such as a slice of pumpkin pie or a candy cane rather than eating multiple servings of sweets. Drink a lot of water with your snacks and meals instead of choosing high-calorie eggnog or soft drinks.
Holiday Eating Tip 3: Learn How To Cook Using Different Ingredients
While cooking holiday meals and treats at home, learn how to alter recipes to have fewer calories. Instead of using margarine, oil or butter in a cake, you can use the same amount of applesauce to reduce the amount of fat in a dessert. You can also use only egg whites in cakes by separating the eggs carefully to remove the yolks, and this helps to reduce the amount of cholesterol in a slice of cake. While making mashed potatoes, you can use vegetable broth instead of milk to reduce the amount of calories and fat in a serving of this holiday favorite.
Holiday Eating Tip 4: Consume the Correct Portion Sizes At Meals and Snacks
Restaurants tend to serve large portions of foods, and you may also have this bad habit at home. In some cases, you are eating food portions that are double or triple the normal amount. Buy a food scale and measuring devices to use at home while serving meals at home to become accustomed to the correct portion sizes. After developing this habit at home, you will understand the proper portion sizes when you eat a holiday meal at a relative’s home. If you are in a restaurant, then ask for a container so that you can take part of a meal home to eat the next day.
Holiday Eating Tip 5: Keep a Food Diary Each Day
Buy a small notebook and pen to carry with you during the holiday season. You can write down everything that you eat and drink each day to keep track of your calorie count. Don’t forget to write down the treats that a coworker offers you at your office or the free samples that you enjoy at a supermarket. You must also keep track of soft drinks and alcoholic beverages because these can ruin your health plan. If you choose to overeat one day, then you must reduce your calorie count the next day.
Holiday Eating Tip 6: Eat Food Slowly At Snacks and Meals
If you are a busy person, then you might eat food quickly and mindlessly. Instead of gulping down your meals, take time to chew the food and savor each bite. By chewing your food slowly, you will feel more satiated, and you will also notice how much food you are eating. When you are at home, focus on eating rather than watching television or using a computer. While at a get-together, remember that one of the most important aspects of the holiday season is socializing with friends and relatives rather than eating every dessert on the buffet table.