As the end of the year rolls around, we suddenly cut ourselves some slack. What’s one more cookie at the office…or one more drink after work…or one more holiday-themed coffee drink?
Of course, this all adds up and there’s a reason why the average Canadian has trouble buttoning up their pants by New Year’s Eve.
Here are 6 tips to help you keep your diet on track during the holidays:
1) Give yourself permission to have fun in some environments but be in control at others. If you can’t prevent yourself from indulging in a candy cane martini after work, don’t say yes to the home-baked cookies at 3 pm. A daily treat is a nice indulgence but moving from one sugar bomb to the next is only going to derail your diet.
2) Eat a small snack before a party. This will keep you from beelining right for the chips, rather than catching up with old friends. Choose items to eat at the party that are special and seasonal. You can have nuts year round; so don’t waste your calories on them (unless they’re your favourite, of course!)
3) At a buffet, choose an appetizer size plate and fill it up once. This will make you be choosy with your favourites and you’ll probably be surprised by how little it takes to be satisfied.
4) When gifted with holiday cookies, go through the pile to put aside the ones that you prefer. Then, either freeze the remainder or give to your local hospital or food bank.
5) See if you can find a lighter version of an original recipe or food, to maintain the taste but lose some of the unnecessary calories. Eggnog is available in light versions or can be mixed half and half with non-fat milk. There’s also a soynog on the market, available in health food stores. Choose to make a homemade Labneh versus buying the storebought mayo-based dips.
6) Keep your yearlong habits. Stay hydrated, sip on green tea, eat balanced meals and go to yoga. When presented with a welcome treat, enjoy it slowly, giving yourself time to savour the experience and register if you’re full.
It IS possible to end the season at the same weight as you began. Enjoy the fun and festivities, and if you indulge too much in one day, forgive yourself and start your healthy cycle the very next morning.