I always made an effort to stay on my diet during the holiday season. But, usually, by the time Thanksgiving dinner was over, I was readjusting my belt and telling myself that I wouldn’t stuff myself like that again. At least until Christmas. But I’d rarely make it past the traditional midnight leftovers binge. The Christmas and Holiday season is filled with temptations, so how do you keep your diet until the leftovers are gone? Here are some great tips that will help you keep to your diet during the Christmas season.
Drink Lots of Water:
It Re-hydrates Your Body.
It took me years of dieting and weight management to realize the difference between hunger and thirst. Often times, when I thought it was time for a snack of Christmas leftovers, my body was really trying to re-hydrate after all of that salty and delicious food.
And Takes Up Room
Drink a full glass of water before Christmas Dinner, and one right before you grab any leftovers (yes, even tiny pieces, those add up). Christmas and Thanksgiving dinners are traditionally full of rich food, but the main culprit of weight gain during the holiday season is over-eating. By keeping your belly full of water, you simply won’t have enough room to stuff it full of food.
Eat Before Dinner
Forget saving room and calories. You should never arrive at Christmas or Thanksgiving dinner hungry. By the time they sit down for the meal, most people have “sampled” more calories than they should have at any dinner. Before arriving at your destination (or cooking the meal), fill up on healthy but bulky food like vegetable soup or fresh vegetables. The food will look so tasty you’ll eat it anyway, but with all the water and healthy food taking up room you just won’t be able to.
Control Portion Size
I know it’s tempting to pile on the goodies, but it is a natural impulse to finish what’s on your plate. To cut down on the calories, ask for a smaller plate. If this is not appropriate, fill up half of the plate with vegetables and make your favorite heavy foods scrunch together on the other side.
What if I Eat Too Much Anyway?
Don’t freak out. If the camaraderie and tasty Christmas goodies carried you away, there’s still hope. Your next plan of action is to stay away from leftovers. If you’re eating at someone else’s, throw away the plate they beg you to take. If you are eating at home, remember the water trick. Before reaching for a turkey sandwich, drink a full glass of water and wait an hour. If you still must have a snack, take a small portion (half a turkey or ham sandwich with no mayo) and then repeat the process again.