Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Party Going Strategies for the Holidays

The holiday season is in FULL swing! As I'm sure you are experiencing, it can be packed with family events and parties with friends and co-workers. This can be a time where we let all our efforts fly out the window and lose control of our focus on healthy eating and good self care. There are many strategies to get you through this time unscathed and your intentions in-tact! Here is a "top-five" list to stick under your belt and pull out when your defenses are low and you need encouragement and support...
  1. Avoid sugary drinks, including alcoholic beverages. These drinks add up to extra calories and added sugar. Opt for water instead, or sparkling water to make it feel more fancy. Also, when you drink alcohol, you are likely to eat more.
  2. Don't stand by the food! If you are at a party that has a buffet, find a place to plant yourself that is far away from the food table to prevent mindless grazing.
  3. Practice mindful eating. Get a plate, even if it is a party with just appetizers, try what you want and leave it at that. Having food on a plate will help you to see what you are eating and how much.
  4. Be careful of the "party mindset." Sometimes it's nice to be able to have a treat now and then - to allow yourself the extra dessert or drink because it is a special occasion. However, if you have several holiday parties during the season (or the week!), then it is no longer a "special occasion" - it becomes a way of life and a way of eating. Keep in mind how many "treats" you are giving yourself in one week, or holiday season, especially if you are attending several parties.
  5. If you are bringing food, bring something healthy!! That way you know there will be at least one thing there that you can feel good about eating.
If you keep these tips in mind and add a few of your own that have worked in the past, this holiday season can end without excess pounds gained, feelings of guilt, and the need to go through a sugar detox when January 1st arrives! Plan ahead, be thoughtful, and treasure the people you are with!

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