Healthy eating during the holidays

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The holiday season is a time of celebrations, and when there is celebration, there is also food.

The food items served during Christmas parties, noche buena, and media noche are truly delectable but also, most of them, unhealthy. Most of these are fried, cream based, with cheese, oily, sweet and salty, and with processed meat, not to mention the alcoholic beverages that you are going to pair them with. In other words, they are heavily laden with fat and calories.

Itís a given that these food items are irresistible, that is why weight-conscious individuals and those on the heavy side canít help sighing at those extra pounds gained after all the cheers. However, what is uglier than those bloated bellies are the health problems that may arise from your overindulgence. So it is important to monitor everything you eat if you want to stay merry long after the last of the fireworks has exploded.

Here are some tips on how to eat without the guilt during the holidays.

∑ Always eat a heavy but healthy breakfast. This way, you will stay filled up the whole morning and you wonít be tempted to try yummy Christmas goodies before lunch.

∑ If you are hosting a party or preparing dinner at home on Christmas eve, make sure that you are serving a balanced meal. This includes vegetable and fruits, healthy salads, low-fat dairy products, and low-fat meat.

∑ In preparing your veggies, do not overcook them. Try to keep them as close to raw as possible. Do not fry them, as they are going to be soaked in oil. Boiling them will make them lose their nutrients. Steaming is the best way to cook veggies. If you want your vegetables to be tastier, instead of salt, add flavor using pepper or fresh herbs.

∑ For your meat, instead of serving pork, you prepare turkey and white chicken meat (breast). They are both low in fat, good for those watching their weight. However, this is not to say that dark chicken meat does not have its own health benefits. Serving fish at Christmas dinner is also recommended.

∑ Dairy products are not totally forbidden. You just have to make sure that you are using low-fat varieties in cooking. Examples of low-fat dairy products are Greek-style yoghurt and fromage frais. Also use less cream.

When you are attending parties and other gathering, here are some healthy tricks.

∑ Do not go to a party very hungry. The hungrier you feel, the more you eat.

∑ Always use a small plate. This way, you will feel not guilty when you fill it up.

∑ If you want to try all the dishes served, eat small portions.

∑ Do not drink alcohol on an empty stomach. Opt for alcoholic beverages with fewer calories such as Cosmopolitan, Bloody Mary, and Mojito.

∑ Drink more water/fruit juice than alcohol.

∑ For desserts, eat less chocolate, cheesecake, and other sweet treats. Go for fresh fruits or salads.

∑ Eat slowly. And when you are already full, simply stop eating.

(Sources: HealthCastle.com, Handbag.com)


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