It’s that time of year again. The holidays are coming. I love it. Halloween with loads of candy, Thanksgiving, Christmas, then the New Year. My favorite thing to do now when the weather gets colder is to cook and bake. I didn’t say I was good at it. Some dishes I make are amazing, others are a disaster (I keep quiet about those) Many times women have asked me how I stay slim. I assure them that I am human like everyone else and my ass has seen a couple extra pounds. I think many of us women deal with that. Men do to, but I’m a chick so I can only speak for the female species. Plus, some women are emotional eaters as well. Sound familiar? Yes, I thought so. Me too.
Where was I? Yes….staying slim through the holidays when it’s so easy to over eat. I have no secrets, my metabolism is average and I’m to lazy for strenuous workouts. I simply keep portions small, don’t eat much past 6:00 if I can help it, avoid most white carbs (pasta, white bread, rice, noodles) Mmm. Lots of lean protein, fruits and veggies, a multi vitamin a day, easy on the desserts, smart choices when eating out and I try to go walking or bike riding often. Grilled over fried, whole grains, stay away from heavy cream sauces and don’t skip breakfast. Are you writing this down? No smoking, and easy on the booze. After 21, the hard partying “drunk” photos are no longer cute anyway. And lose the spandex dress party girl, those aren’t flattering for any body type. Next…
You might argue, “But I hate depriving myself.” So I answer, “You don’t have to deprive, find a happy medium.” If you can find a healthy eating routine instead of a “diet,” you’ll stick to it over the long term. It’s worth it. Extra weight causes some cancers, heart disease, diabetes and more illnesses. So you see, it’s not all about vanity.
I came up with four (yes, only four, my attention span is too short for more than four) great ways of keeping off the dreaded holiday weight at big dinner gatherings:
1. Bring something. Don’t go to a party empty handed. Whip up a healthy, but tasty dish.
2. Be picky. Choose your foods wisely. If you really want some of that creamy spinach dip, fine- but only a couple bites. Load up on veggies, salad and shrimp cocktail. Avoid carbs (bread, pasta, etc), creamy sauces, and fried foods. Self control is the key .
3. Plan ahead. If you know you’ll be eating a bigger meal, eat light all day, but don’t starve yourself or you’ll over eat. I always nibble on a light snack to avoid being too hungry for a large meal. That way I don’t attack the table. It works like a charm.
4. Savor your food. Eat slowly, savor every bite. Yeah, easier said than done, right? Avoid mindless eating. Wait ten minutes and then go back for more. You might decide you have had enough if you give your body time to digest. Mingle. And for god’s sake, stand somewhere other than the food table.
…and there’s a yummy loaf of home made banana bread calling my name. Then again, maybe tomorrow.