1. Don’t skip meals. This backfires because you come to the next meal really hungry and eat more than intended.
2. Fill up on lower calorie, nutrient dense foods such as fruits, veggies, popcorn, and lean cold cuts on whole grain bread.
3. Make just one trip to the party buffet.
4. Use a plate for even the smallest snack—you’ll eat less.
5. Eat slowly and enjoy each mouthful. Hold your glass in the hand that you normally eat with to make finger foods less accessible.
6. Eat only when you are hungry and not because food is near or because everyone is eating.
7. Don’t waste calories on foods you don’t like or foods you can have anytime.
8. Contrast flavors, textures and temperatures for more satisfaction in your eating.
9. Don’t buy candy or goodies too far ahead of event. Once purchased, keep out of sight.
10. Avoid grazing while you cook. Little nibbles can really add up! When it’s time to eat, sit down and savor it!
11. Beware of liquid calories- eggnog, beer, soda, and wine. They go down so easy and often do not add much nutrition to your intake.
12. Become mindful while eating and pay attention to your fullness during a meal. Learn to stop at comfortable, not full.
13. Don’t hang out near the food- socialize a distance away. This will help prevent unconscious nibbling.
14. Write a list of things to do other than to eat (such as take a walk, call a friend or do some cleaning) to have available when you feel bored, angry, frustrated, lonely, depressed or any way that leads to cravings.
15. Be realistic: trying to lose weight during the holidays may be a self-defeating goal. Instead strive to maintain your weight.
16. When you arrive at a party, avoid rushing to the food. Greet people you know- conversation is calorie-free! Get a beverage and settle into the festivities before eating. Overall, you may eat less.
17. Ask for sparkling water (calorie free) with a lemon or lime twist rather than wine, champagne, or a mixed drink.
18. If you’re bringing a dish to share, make it healthful and delicious. That way you know there will be one thing you can munch on without racking up calories too fast!
19. Forget the all-or-nothing mindset. Depriving yourself of special holiday foods or feeling guilty when you do enjoy them, isn’t a healthful eating strategy. And deprivation and guilt certainly are not part of the holiday spirit!