‘Tis the season to be jolly, but for those who would like to avoid turning into a bowl full of jelly, it’s not impossible to stay healthy while out celebrating the holidays. Jill Urban filed the following Wellness Report.
We all know how tempting the food at a holiday party or meal can be, but knowing which foods are OK to go for is the best way to avoid overdoing it. So NY1 talked with Rebecca Solomon, director of clinical nutrition at Beth Israel Medical Center, for some advice.
First she says the best way to promote self control at a holiday part is to never go hungry.
“One of the big mistakes people make when they go to a holiday party is they go hungry, they go too hungry. So one of things I suggest is to have a protein and fiber snack that will keep you full enough to be in control when you get to the party but not so full that you can’t enjoy the festive treats,” said Solomon.
She suggests something like whole-wheat toast with a thin layer of peanut butter and banana or a high protein yogurt with a sprinkle of granola and fruit. It’s just enough to keep you in check.
Once at the party, she says look for things that are high in fiber and protein.
“If you see a lean source of protein, especially if its lean protein with veggies, go for that. Chicken satay is an excellent option, if it’s served with roasted veggies, even better. Be careful though because the dipping sauces can be very, very high fat and calories like peanut sauce,” Solomon said.
Same with the crudité, the veggies may be the healthiest thing on the table, but drowning them in dip will do some damage to a calorie count.
As for the crunchy salty snacks, popcorn is usually the best pick, especially if it’s air popped.
And if you are about to raid the dessert table, she says go for the chocolate covered fruit. It may be enough to satisfy your sweet tooth and offer some benefits.
Many people don’t realize the often the biggest calorie killer isn’t at the buffet, it’s at the bar.
“One of the biggest holiday weight gain killers is the alcohol, be very careful what you drink. The prettier the cocktail, the more calories it has, so try to stick to a simple glass of wine or a light beer if you can,” she said.
Now if you do over it, don’t beat yourself up and let one night set you in a downward spiral. She says tomorrow is another day and a new opportunity to start fresh.