It’s possible to make healthy choices and still enjoy the holidays. Tufts Health & Nutrition Letter has some useful suggestions.
Celebrations often lead to overindulgence, unhealthy choices, and unwanted weight gain. Here are some tips for keeping holiday meals happy and healthy:
Make new traditions…and update the old: Many holiday dishes are high in added sugars or salt. Consider making new traditions: try roasted string beans with slivered almonds in place of creamy string bean casserole, for example. Or look for recipes that substitute ingredients to “lighten” traditional dishes. Continue reading
These are great fun times coming up for us for the most part. We will see friends and loved ones who live out of town. There is great reason to celebrate. With the tips on this infographic, you may be able to sidestep the worst of holiday weight gain.
Image Credit: P.K. Newby, and author of Food and Nutrition: What Everyone Needs to Know®, Oxford University Press 2018
1. Avoid carrot sticks. Anyone who puts carrots on a holiday buffet table knows nothing of the Holiday spirit. In fact, if you see carrots, leave immediately.. Go next door, where they’re serving rum balls.
2. Drink as much eggnog as you can. And quickly. It’s rare. You cannot find it any other time of year but now. So drink up! Who cares that it has 10,000 calories in every sip? It’s not as if you’re going to turn into an eggnog-alcoholic or something. It’s a treat.. Enjoy it. Have one for me. Have two. It’s later than you think. It’s Christmas!
3. If something comes with gravy, use it. That’s the whole point of gravy. Gravy does not stand alone. Pour it on. Make a volcano out of your mashed potatoes. Fill it with gravy. Eat the volcano. Repeat.
4. As for mashed potatoes, always ask if they’re made with skim milk or whole milk. If it’s skim, pass. Why bother? It’s like buying a sports car with an automatic transmission.
5. Do not have a snack before going to a party in an effort to control your eating. The whole point of going to a Holiday party is to eat other people’s food for free. Lots of it. Hello?
I think it is always a good idea to have a game plan. Hopefully, this will help you to enjoy your holiday eating more.
Eat less; move more; live longer. Those words are the mantra of this blog. I realize that they are also easier said than done especially at this time of year – holiday season.
We seem to be hard-wired to celebrate by eating. Maybe it goes back to the time we had to hunt for our food. When we managed to kill something edible that was reason for celebration and we did. We ate our fill because we didn’t know when our next meal would be. But, times have changed and a trip to a supermarket is enough to feed an entire family for a week. So there is no need to eat till we are bursting at any single meal or event.
The holidays are a particularly trying time. There are various family celebrations along with parties at friends and neighbors. Each is a special form of temptation that we have to deal with. Continue reading
Living in the Midwestern U.S. I have suffered along with much of the country in the recent serious cold snap.I have the Weather Channel on as I write this. They reported that 65 million Americans are under cold weather alert this morning. The weather has curtailed my cycling and I have ‘taken to the stairs’ in my high rise for supplemental exercise. We have a health club, but I don’t enjoy the confinement of it. So, this year, I am suffering from some winter weight gain. I was surprised to learn that the curtailed sunlight in winter may also be relevant to body weight. Herewith, information from the University of Alberta’s Lesley Young.
We may have a new reason, in addition to vitamin D generation, to bask in a little sunshine.
A breakthrough study by University of Alberta researchers has shown the fat cells that lie just beneath our skin shrink when exposed to the blue light emitted by the sun.
The holidays are fast approaching with Thanksgiving looming large on our calendar. Here are some very useful tips from Rush University Medical Center for fixing that holiday meal without taxing your friends and family.
Prepare a feast fit for … your waistline
Thanksgiving is known for quality time around the table with friends and family — and for its large portions of indulgent dishes.
It is easy to overeat when faced with so many delicious foods. In fact, research suggests the average Thanksgiving meal contains a whopping 3,000 to 4,500 calories, which is far more than the average man or woman needs in an entire day.
Here are some tips and tricks to lighten up some of your favorite Thanksgiving dishes — so you can impress your friends and family with a feast that’s as nutritious as it is delicious.
To reduce sodium:
Use reduced sodium, or unsalted chicken broth or stock when making mashed potatoes or stuffing.
Add flavor with herbs and spices like rosemary, thyme and garlic instead of salt.
Canned vegetables tend to be high in sodium, so read the labels and choose low sodium varieties. Or opt for fresh or frozen veggies instead.
To cut sugar:
Sugar provides texture and tenderness to baked goods such as muffins and cakes. However, baked goods often contain a lot of sugar.
Cutting the sugar in your recipe will save you excess calories without compromising your dessert. Start by reducing the sugar by one quarter. If you’re satisfied with the taste and texture, try cutting the sugar in half. This can save you approximately 200 to 400 calories (for ¼ cup and ½ cup of sugar, respectively) per recipe. Continue reading
The week between Christmas and New Year’s is always a limbo period. It’s shortened by the holidays and we are preoccupied by the social turmoil. So, here are some humorous items on holiday fare.
In deference to the upcoming Thanksgiving holiday which ushers in the holiday season, I published yesterday my post – Healthy eating tops for the holidays.
I thought this write up from Rush University Medical Center was a worthwhile follow up. The Rush dietitian has some good detailed suggestions and examples.
Trying to lose weight during the holiday season may be unrealistic, given that the average American gains one to five pounds between Thanksgiving and New Year’s Day, a six-week span marked by celebrations, eating and drinking.
This is especially true for people who are already overweight.
A review of studies evaluating holiday weight gain determined the average gain between Thanksgiving and New Year’s to be only 0.8 pounds. However, people who were already overweight or obese gained as much as five pounds. A more recent evaluation also found that obese people experienced greater increases in body fat over the holiday season compared to people in the normal weight range. Continue reading