Organic Bound

Fear Not the Holiday Buffet

December 2013

Registered dietitian and clinical professor Suzanne Havala Hobbs calls this time of year “holiday dietary whitewater,” and we all know what that means. Our taste buds often manage to drown our best intentions!

Having a strategy for negotiating those rapids can make all the difference. Suzanne’s advice is simple and easy: “Fill up before you fill out.”

  • Don’t show up hungry. Having a healthy snack before leaving home means you’ll be less likely to overindulge later.
  • Find the low-calorie foods. Fresh fruits and veggies, green salads and soups are usually good bets (if you avoid heavy cream-based dishes and high-calorie salad dressings).
  • Go for the sides. Sides like broccoli, sweet potatoes (without marshmallows), green beans and other veggies often contain fewer calories than the main attractions. Add them to your plate first, then take half servings of everything else.
  • Be a healthier host. Make it easier for your guests to choose healthier options. Keep fresh, seasonal fruits where they’re easy to see — or toss some into a simple, colorful fruit salad.

Having a strategy ahead of time can help you avoid food guilt and enjoy the party, too!

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