Much of the disastrous 10 pounds per decade (that is suspected of being the foundation of our obesity crisis) is acquired between Thanksgiving and Christmas. Regardless of your familial background, there are more gatherings, celebrations and opportunities to eat at this time of year. Navigating them so you can enjoy without the backside burden takes a tiny bit of practice.
I share these tips every year but somehow we forget not to get caught up in the festivities. Half the deal is a mind game, really. This is likely not the last turkey you will ever enjoy, mashed potatoes can be made healthier and more often. Enjoy the day in a manageable way and get back to your healthier routine in between parties.
Here are some party tricks that work wonders at preventing the gobble, gobble, undo my pants, gobble:
1. Always bring a veggie platter with low fat yogurt dip or hummus.
2. Seat yourself next to said platter and nibble to your heart's content.
3. Promise yourself you will not eat the chips, popcorn, peanuts, chocolates and any other manner of crap before dinner. (After dinner, if you are still hungry...hahaha...go ahead.)
4. When dinner is served fill half of your plate with green vegetables, ¼ with starchy vegetables like carrots and squash and the other ¼ with lean protein.
5. Try this recipe for better mashed potatoes.
6. Avoid anything deep fried. (Note: This is the first time I have used the word "avoid.")
7. Never have more than two alcoholic beverages.
8. Take a piece of Aunt Cheryl's cake home and cut into small squares, freeze for treats.
The key is to decide in your head and heart that you will feel better if you don't overindulge. What you really want is the comfort of the people you love and the warmth of that will sustain you. Nourishing your time with them however you can is the key. (Or, get on a plane and go south for some sunshine. Tell them your nutritionist told you that you were vitamin D deficient and you really couldn't make it this year. I am down with both plans.) Any way you slice it, it is moments that sustain you and the good food and feelings that go with them.