The holiday season is upon us once again, and you know what that means! Family time, no school, presents, and of course a seemingly endless buffet of delicious foods. Who isn’t completely psyched for peppermint bark, gingerbread men, and pumpkin-spiced everything? While these festive treats are only socially appropriate to have during this time of year, it’s still important to be mindful of what and how much you’re putting in your stomach. Here are some tips to help you have more holiday cheer and less holiday food guilt.
1. Opt for a smaller plate…and use it!
Studies have found that if you use a smaller plate for your meals, you're more likely to east less. This can be helpful in cutting portion size for meals as well as eating fewer snacks at parties. But the hard part is not going back for extra servings. When you’re at a holiday party, load up your plate at the snack or desert table, then take your time eating and try not to return to the table for more.
2. Stay hydrated
Drinking a glass of water before eating can help you feel fuller faster. Try having a glass or two before your Thanksgiving feast and see what a difference it makes! You don’t even have to compromise taste when you can drink this metabolism-boosting apple cinnamon H20!
3. Focus on other activities
The holidays are about spending quality time with family and friends, so suggest a game that everyone can play or even look through old family photos with your grandparents. If you’re busy having fun doing other things, you’ll forget all about the bowl of your aunt’s famous caramel popcorn sitting in the kitchen. When it’s cold out and the only think you can think to do is spend the day being a couch potato and eating out of boredom, call up a friend and go do anything else, because you and I both know that’s what you did yesterday.
4. Hit the gym
You KNOW this was going on your New Year’s Resolution List anyway, so why not get a head start? It can be difficult to stay motivated to go for a jog during the colder months, so going to an indoor gym may sound more appealing. You can even get a few dumbbells and workout in the comfort of your own home so you have no excuses, even when there’s a blizzard outside. You can find some awesome in-gym and at-home workouts here. (http://muffintop-less.tumblr.com/MTLCWORKOUTS) If you work off those extra calories, you won’t feel so guilty about having an extra slice of pumpkin pie!
It’s important to keep in mind that you should enjoy yourself this season and not put too much pressure on yourself about changing your eating habits. These tips and tricks are not difficult to implement and allow you to still enjoy all that the holidays have to offer without feeling guilty. Who knows? Maybe these baby steps will be the beginning of a healthier 2013!