Tis’ the season to wine & dine
Winter is the most delicious time of the year – with an array of holiday office parties, gift exchanges with friends and plenty of family dinners planned, it’s no wonder the average amount of weight gained this time of year is about two pounds! If you do the math, that’s approximately 20lbs in a decade that can sneak up on you.
Don’t let the holiday’s weigh you down this year! With our nifty holiday health hacks, you can enjoy a range of sweets and treats guilt-free.
1. Hors D’Oeuvres – Substitute & Choose Wisely
While there’s normally an array of delicious snacks available when you first enter a soiree, they’re not usually the most diet-friendly options.
Make sure there’s a healthy option by offering to bring your own plate of food. Arriving armed with chopped fresh veggies and a greek yogurt dip—or any other low-calorie snack—ensures that you’ll have something to snack on without feeling guilty.
2. Cocktail Hour – Drink This, Not That
Although it may extremely tempting to guzzle down a delicious glass of eggnog, there are other drink options during the holidays that are half the calories and just as tasty!
Skip the eggnog this year and go for a glass of hot apple cider or mulled wine instead. It can instantly save you 150 calories and all the fat. Alternatively, a brut (dry) champagne is usually only 65 calories per glass and is always a classy holiday drink option.
Pro Tip: Make sure to alternate every alcoholic drink with a glass of water – this way, you’ll be hydrated and it will slow down your alcohol intake to avoid over-indulging.
3. The Main Course – Don’t Forget Your Protein
Whether it’s Christmas dinner or your office holiday party, there’s always a feast on the table ready to be devoured. This holiday season, eat smarter by assessing all of the food options on the table first and then deciding which options are the most health conscious.
Look out for leafy green vegetables, turkey, chicken, and beef in order to ensure your protein intake is on point for the night. Another helpful way to ensure you don’t need to unbutton your pants by the end of the meal is to eat slowly. Wait at least twenty minutes after your first round of food before you go in for seconds. It takes the brain this long to register that your stomach is full – and will help to make sure you don’t overeat.
4. Dessert – Cut the Calories
Thanks to the internet, there are literally thousands of clever dessert recipes out there for clean sweets that taste great and are a fraction of the calories. Craving a pie or cobbler? Swap them out for a fruity treat in the form of a mock cobbler.
Using lemon water, sauted berries, fresh grated ginger, and a crumble from rolled oats and almond butter, you can still get the sweetness you crave – minus the carb-heavy filling. Another simple way to cut calories on dessert recipes is to replace full-fat milk with nut milk, use banana and dates as natural sweeteners and swap refined sugar for pure maple syrup.
5. The Aftermath – Walk it Off
It’s the holidays, so even if you are trying to eat healthy foods, chances are you’re going to still end up in some sort of food coma. If you’re feeling stuffed, start by drinking a glass of water. Drinking more fluids will help you digest food more easily.
Another great way to ease your feeling of fullness is to take a walk thirty minutes after you eat. Even if it means walking a few laps around the house (we’re not saying to talk a walk in the freezing snow), it will help you burn some energy and feel better faster.