It’s that time of the year again! Parties left and right. Food everywhere. Lots of booze. And Christmas bonuses to spend. But along with the merry-making comes the dreaded holiday weight gain. So if you’re looking to keep the pounds away, here are some tips on how to keep your holiday eating habits in check.
Eat before going to a party
This might sound counterintuitive, but an empty stomach will sabotage your health goals. You’ll likely overeat if you’re hungry, and the festive atmosphere will definitely make bad food choices seem good. Eat a small meal before leaving the house. This way, you’ll have control over what you eat and will be able to resist temptations better.
Be in charge of your party choices
If you have more prep time before a party, you can cook a dish to bring. Make it something within your health goals, so that you’ll have a go-to pick when it’s eating time. You won’t worry about falling off the wagon because you’re making sure you’re trapped in.
Skip the booze
Booze is great. Beer is awesome. We’re all for drinking responsibly with loved ones, but if you don’t want that belly of yours hanging out, better stick to good old water. Not only does alcohol make you feel woozy in the morning, it also increases your appetite while decreasing your ability to say no to food. Drinking enough H2O will also prevent you from overeating. Another point from scientists: Sometimes, when you think you’re hungry, you are just thirsty.
Go for the green stuff
We know it’s a little killjoy to tell you to eat your vegetables when there’s hamon and lechon on the spread, but the best way to stay healthy is to lay off the meat and choose plants. Not only will you do yourself a huge favor, you’ll also be gifting Mama Earth a much-needed breather.
Pause between bites
It takes minutes for the stomach to send the “stop – already full” signal to the brain. It’s thus wise to eat small portions first, take a few seconds to take another bite, and then wait a few minutes before getting a second helping. This ensures you don’t overeat.
Focus on socializing, not food
If you want to stop putting food in your mouth, do something else: Talk to people. Catch up with your balikbayan cousin or strike a convo with that cute girl you’ve been crushing on.
Keep your distance from the buffet table
Avoid recreational eating by keeping your distance from food. Sit as far as you can from it, but if not possible, minty gum always helps.
Say no politely
Of course, if you’re finding it hard to be in control of what you eat during social gatherings, then you always have the option to say no. Decline invitations nicely by saying something like “Thank you for the invitation, but I’m sorry I couldn’t make it. You guys enjoy.” Most people would leave it at that but if they press for details, you could always say you already have plans.
Got any more tips for staying healthy these holidays? Leave a comment below!