Submitted by: Joanne Perez, Real Bite Nutrition
Who doesn’t love a holiday party? Getting to dress up and mingle with family and friends is a highlight of the holiday season. But between the constantly filled glass in one hand and endless trays of foods passing by your eyes, you could easily lose track of how much you are drinking and eating. Luckily, there are some easy party going techniques and tasty swaps that you can make to ensure that you enjoy every minute of the party.
Don’t Bank Your Calories
By this I mean don’t skip meals so you can overindulge at the party. If you arrive starving, you will most likely make less healthy choices. Do you really think you will choose raw veggies over “pigs in a blanket” if you haven’t eaten all day? Start your day with a breakfast that includes some protein and just decrease your portions throughout the day if you know you will be eating or drinking more than usual in the evening.
Work That Body
The holidays are hectic but finding time for a power walk or run should be at the top of your list. Try modifying your usual workout so that you can fit it into your busy day. You will feel better about how you look on the outside, if you have done something healthy for the inside.
Savor Every Bite
This is a great time to use mindful eating which gives you permission to eat, the foods you love, slowly so you can really taste and enjoy each bite. In addition, it teaches you how to listen to your body for hunger cues. So make sure to put your fork down between each mouthful and join in on the conversation.
Swap out high calorie dips with ones made with Greek yogurt to not only save calories, but also, give you a little extra protein. Another choice for a healthier dip is salsa. The tomatoes and peppers will give you a dose of vitamin C and vitamin A, which can help keep your immune system strong and you healthy.
Instead of mindlessly munching on Chex mix, opt for nuts and olives. Not only will they help make your table pretty, but also provide you with protein and heart healthy fats. Both will help keep your appetite in check.
Fake A Drink
Did you know that replacing 2 of the 5 ounces in a glass of wine with club soda could save you up to 60 calories? Not only will you save calories, but also save yourself from possible embarrassing antics.
Why would you eat pale brown crackers when you could enjoy a festive plate of raw vegetables with your dip? In addition to adding color, you will get fiber, antioxidants and vitamins. The vegetables will fill you up and give you lots of different textures and flavors.
It wouldn’t be a party without an amazing assortment of sweet treats. By selecting “bite-sized” desserts over slices or scoops, you can have a taste and not feel tempted to eat the whole thing.
It’s important to remember that the purpose of the holiday party is not to eat and/or drink to excess, but instead to catch up with family and friends. So party on and enjoy a Real Bite!