Monday, December 7, 2009

Training to Eat for the Holidays

The holidays are fast approaching. This wonderful time of year is filled with good fellowship, food, and fun….and lots of calories and overindulgence often leading to weight gain and weight loss resolutions. How can we make this year different?
After this segment be sure to log on to FAMILY Magazine publisher, Brenda Hyde, will be online to discuss this topic inside the Washington FAMILY Magazine Group.
Today, Judy Caplan, Registered Dietitian and author of the children’s book Gobey Gets Full – Good Nutrition in a Nutshell (, shared tips on “Training to Eat for the Holiday” during the Moms Like Me segment on WUSA9.
Judy suggests:
If you put some simple practices into play now, you can avoid that beginning of the year regret. She calls this “Training to Eat for the Holidays.”
Tip One: Make awareness part of the holiday spirit. Ask yourself, “Where do I want my weight to be to on January 2nd?” Jot the answer down on a piece of paper and post it where you can see it every day. For example: “I want to weigh 135 on January 2nd.” Now don’t lose sight of that goal.
Tip Two: Set into motion actions that will lead to achieving your goal. For instance, continue your exercise program. If you don’t have one, now is the time to start. Don’t wait until the first of the year to begin. Exercise is a great calorie burner. Exercise also increases endorphins which promote a sense of well being, something you will need lots of at this stressful time of year.
Tip Three: Set a carbohydrate limit for the day. Allow yourself a daily total of four to six carbohydrate servings. Since there will be sweets and alcohol everywhere, each time you eat a cookie or have a drink over the holidays, you have to subtract some other carbohydrate from your diet that day, so plan ahead. Here are some other examples of one carbohydrate serving:
One slice of whole wheat bread
½ of a hamburger bun
8 stick pretzels
3 Hershey kisses
¼ of a medium order of French fries

Keep a food log. This helps you know how many carbs you have eaten and how many you have left. One strategy is to limit carbs during the week and fill up on lots of salads and fresh veggies, limited amounts of whole grains, lean protein, and healthy fats. Use two servings of fruit each day to satisfy your sweet tooth.

Here is a sample menu:
Breakfast: Egg white omelet with spinach and low fat cheese, topped with salsa and sliced avocado
¾ cup oatmeal or whole grain cereal with sliced fruit and skim milk plus one teaspoon ground flaxseed
2 slices (40 calories each) whole grain bread with 1T. natural peanut butter and fruit spread
*Coffee or skinny latte

Lunch: Large salad with lean protein – grilled chicken, low fat cheese, shrimp, salmon or lean beef. Add sliced avocado or toasted nuts.
Vinaigrette dressing (preferable made with olive oil)
If you did not have carbs at breakfast (oatmeal, cereal, toast) sandwich on whole wheat bread with nitrite free turkey with olive oil mayo, lettuce, tomato, onion, pickle (if non meat, eater make with low fat cheese)
Fresh cut up veggies with 1/3 cup hummus plus 5 Triscuits or 20 Wheat Thins

Dinner: Fresh salad with vinaigrette, lean protein of your choice, and steamed or roasted veggies (non starchy)

Snacks: Use your two servings of fruit for snacks. Add 12 raw almonds with each fruit serving
*Coffee is a calorie free food but can lead to hunger pangs, so limit intake.

Tip Four: Have a plan before you attend a party because once you get there good intentions can quickly fly out the window. Alcohol, besides adding calories, diminishes your ability to stay focused on your goals. Set a number of drinks for the night and stick to it.

You never want to go to a party hungry. Telling yourself you won’t eat all day so it is okay to indulge at the party is a formula for disaster. At the party avoid fried food, any appetizer that sits on bread, creamy dips, and limit sweets and alcohol. That leaves veggies and protein. Save the carbs for your set amount of alcohol or a bite or two of something yummy.

For more articles and resources about how “Training to Eat for the Holiday,” visit the Washington FAMILY Magazine

No comments:

Post a Comment