Eat Guilt Free Through the Holidays


by Sylvia Melendes, MS, RD, LDN, CPT

FOOD AND HOLIDAYS go together. But as we all know, when friends and family are gathered around the table, it’s all too easy to overdo. On some holidays, many Americans eat an average of 8,220 calories and 418 grams of fat. That’s close to four times the recommended intake for an adult. I want to share a few tips you can take to keep you and your family eating healthy during the Holidays.  

  1. PLAN.  And, follow your plan.  When attending parties, know your high-risk triggers.  Plan your eating “budget” for that day.
  2. DO NOT SKIP MEALS.  Consider eating before you go to a party or before your guests arrive.
  3. Decide which foods are an essential part of a particular Holiday and choose wisely.  Avoid foods that you do not enjoy and choose small portions, even of low-fat foods.
  4. If preparing a favorite meal or recipe, eat before getting started.
  5. Enjoy activities not centered around food such as going to a museum, theater, playing cards, shopping, etc.
  6. If you feel tired, drink water or if possible take a nap – not a snack.
  7. Continue with your exercise program.  Do something everyday; even if is only for 5 minutes. 
  8. Use extra time away from home to enjoy relaxing activities such as reading, working on hobbies or listening to music.
  9. Be last – the last one to sit down, the last one at the buffet, and the last one to the finish. 
  10. Meet new friends.  Make a point to talk with people you do not know.  This will help you stay away from the food table.
  11. Eat slowly, SAVOR THE FLAVOR.
  12. Avoid or drink moderate amounts of alcohol. A 4 ounce glass of wine = 150 calories!
  13. Keep a positive attitude.  If you stray, bounce back.  It’s only one party.