The snowboard season is approaching quickly – and so is the holiday season. All of us should be practicing healthy eating during the holiday season and working hard to get our legs and rest of our bodies ready for shred season. Unfortunately, it also happens to be the easiest time of year to overindulge at the dinner table.
Now, don’t get us wrong, we love a good hearty meal and we see nothing wrong with stuffing yourself and then heading directly to the couch for a nap. However, there is a happy medium out there and we are determined to find it. If you plan ahead and put a little thought into what you’re putting in your mouth, then this holiday season could be your healthiest ever. We’ve put together a list of tips that will help keep you on track, and found some great ways to cut the fat out of holiday staples.
- Don’t Skip Meals. Just because you know you’re going to pig out at dinner tonight, Do Not skip breakfast and lunch. This will get you to dinner – starving – and overeating is guaranteed. If you’re really smart, you’ll even make a small snack before you head to dinner so you won’t be tempted to eat everything in sight.
- Start With Smaller Portions. Remember, you can always go back for seconds. Clearing the plate feels good, and if you put twice as much food on your plate than you really need, you’re going to be over-full and feel horrible. Take smaller scoops and see how you feel when you finish. Another idea is to use a smaller plate. This will also help control portions.
- Easy On The Booze. Holiday “spirits” are always loaded with sugar and calories and can add to you not feeling awesome the day after a party. Drinking too much can also cause hunger (late night munchies anyone?) and you could end up eating twice as much.
- Bring A Healthy Dish. Pot luck style dinners are popular during the holidays. Do your family and friends a favor (and yourself) and bring a healthy side dish. Loading up on delicious fruits or veggies will help curb your appetite so you don’t over do it on the stuffing and mashed potatoes.
- Don’t Forget To Exercise. On days you choose to skip a real workout, make sure you do a bare-minimum of at least 2 brisk 15 minute walks. Taking a stroll after dinner is good for digestion and it will help get your blood flowing after sitting down for too long at the table.
re-think the way you cook key items
- Turkey – Roast the turkey, and serve it without the skin. Removing skin removes grams of fat!
- Gravy – Refrigerating the gravy will cause the fat to harden. Once it hardens, it will be easy to see the fat and you can scrape it right into the garbage.
- Stuffing – Cut down on the bread and load up on the veggies. Add more celery and onions, or mix in fruits like apples or cranberries.
- Mashed Potatoes – Cut out the whole milk and butter and replace it with skim milk or chicken broth.
healthy dessert (yes, there is such a thing!)
- Think fruit! Not only are fruit-based desserts delicious, but some fruits (like blueberries, strawberries and grapes) are filled with anti-oxidants and great after a large meal.
- Get the blender out and whip up your own frozen yogurt using bananas, berries any other frozen fruits you love.
- Parfaits are fast, easy and delicious! Pick a non-fat yogurt and load up on berries and granola for a light and yummy after dinner snack.
- If a recipe calls for sugar, try replacing it with cinnamon, vanilla and almond extract.
- If a recipe calls for butter or margarine, try replacing it with canola oil (full of omega-6), walnut oil or coconut oil.
Have a good healthy eating tip? We would love to hear it. We hope you have enjoyed these simple tips and wish you all a happy and healthy holiday season. And more importantly, here’s to an amazing shred season!