Sensible holiday eating (and, of course drinking): Part 1
Let’s not kid ourselves; maintaining pre-holiday diets during these days is a loosing battle. But it needn’t be adding to your waistline bulge, if these sensible, science-backed tips are followed
Eat before indulging
The proverbial “save your appetite” for until the feast myth, is akin to living in fools paradise, wherever that may be. Skipping breakfast on days like this, also belongs to the same category. We recommend a normal breakfast with plenty of protein, to keep you fuller, longer; and tone down the urge to over-stuff your face later.
Protein – a sure shot pick
Protein can help maintain a healthy weight, because high-protein diets are associated with greater levels of satiety. Ensure you serve up turkey, roasted chicken, or alternatives like quinoa, lentils, or beans.
No this is not a spello. Yes, you’ve read this correctly. The alternative to figuring out what’s in every dish at the next party, or worse still, avoid eating altogether, BYOD, a.k.a. bring your own dish (or dessert). This allows you to taste what you want, but also have a healthy safety net alternative.
Eat slow, chew even slower
Pacing yourself before a smorgasbord of party food is a great strategy. The quicker you eat, the less time the body has to register ‘fullness’. Slow down, take time to savor each bite of baked, scooped our poured out, whatever. Enjoy!
Let restaurant-style service, inspire
While settling down for the main meal, leave food in the kitchen, away from reach and sight. Displays of food baskets, overflowing with piping hot rolls, meats, desserts directly on the table can be overwhelming; stirring up the desire for uncontrollable eating. After finishing what’s on your plate, take a breather, then decide about seconds.
Fiber, the great filler
Serving up snacks like vegetables and other high-fiber munchies like legumes can help keep you fuller, longer. Give the vegetable platter a lift, with a healthy, tasty dip.
The smaller the plate gets…
Choose a smaller salad plate, instead of a tray-like one. It’s scientifically proven that using smaller plates can actually make you feel fuller with less food. This is because our brains associates a big white space on the plate with less food.
Good fats, here they come
Get your fix of healthy monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats from avocadoes, nuts, and olive oil. Combining fat with fibre, like veggies dipped in guacamole, is known to increase (good) fat’s power to make us feel full.
Keep added sugar out of the door
All the added sugar in cookies, cakes and pies may increase the risk of cardiovascular disease and obesity. Stick to natural sugars from form fruits, veggies, and whole grains. Sample smaller portions of the desserts you’re craving, rather than loading up a full plate of bland cookies.
Go gung ho on veggies
Some great veggie munches like mixing puréed veggies into baked goods or casseroles; or spiriting them into pasta or potato dishes, not only increases fibre, but helps make you fuller.