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Diet Diva
Diet Diva

Get advice on healthy eating, nutrition, and weight loss from expert dietitian Tara Gidus. 

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Avoid the Holiday Gain


The holiday season is upon us, and that means eggnog, rum balls, and lots of holiday parties! My previous post, 'Tis the Season, gave you some tips on how to avoid gaining weight over the holiday season. But since I am just full of advice, I thought I would share some more tips today:

  • If you don't love it, leave it! This is a rule that lasts all year long, but especially at holiday time. If you try something at a party and it is not "worth it", then leave it behind! Food is meant to be enjoyed and there is an abundance of good food at parties and your family's house at this time of year. Make every calorie worth it!
  • A few bites can satisfy. Instead of thinking that you "can't have" something this holiday season, just remember that you can have it, just control how much. I watched a girl at a party last night take half of a slice of cake and leave the other half for someone else who also may not want the whole piece. Take small portions of lots of different things so you don't feel deprived and can satisfy those cravings.
  • Watch the booze. Alcohol has a lot of calories, but it also reduces our ability to make good choices. You tend to eat more when you drink alcohol at an event. Limit yourself to one drink.
  • Concentrate on conversations. Instead of hanging out right next to the food table or waiting impatiently for the next course to be served, strike up a conversation with your family and friends (or strangers) at the get together. It may sound silly, but read the newspaper or scan the internet for some latest news and bring it up as a conversation starter.
  • Sit down and eat. We tend to nibble while we cook and think those calories don't count (eating amnesia). Chew gum or suck on strong mints while you are cooking so you are not tempted to sample too much. When it is time to eat, get a plate and fork and put food on it and sit down with it and enjoy!
  • Don't starve yourself. Often I hear people say they skipped lunch so they could pig out at the holiday party. Eat lighter at lunch, but don't skip it. You will just open the flood gates at the party and eat way too much, feeling guilty and maybe even sick afterwards! Concentrate on fiber and protein, the two things that will provide the most satiety, or fullness for a longer period of time.
Happy Holidays!

Christmas cookie photo courtesy of EverySpoon
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About the Author


MS, RD, CSSD, LD/N

Tara Gidus is a nationally recognized expert and spokesperson on nutrition and fitness.

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