November is #EatSmartMonth. With Thanksgiving, Christmas, and other celebrations fast approaching it is important to make healthier food decisions.
But, it’s insanely hard and can take the fun out of family gatherings, office dinners, or a night out with friends. We have enough stress at this time of year (deadlines, shopping, finding a parking space!) so I’m not about to add to it by listing out all of the dietary changes you should be making.
You’re welcome. 😛
Instead, let me share with you the one simple holiday diet hack: eat the same great foods, just less of them.
Let me give you an example of how I tackled this at a GINORMOUS family Thanksgiving feast. So many great dishes. Turkey, ham, mashed potatoes, biscuits, gravy, green beans, deviled eggs, casseroles, and about a half-dozen different dessert options. Does that sound like the kind of temptations that you see at a family dinner?
I could fill my plate with mostly vegetables, fruit, and salad, but I’d be depressed that I had missed out on a once a year feast! Once a year. This is not something you eat each day, week, or even each month, so why miss out?
So, what did I do?
In previous years, I would stack my plate, and then, once finished, go back and refill my plate with all the dishes that I loved the most. Now? I fill my plate with a taste of everything I think I would like. And that’s it. No repeat trips. That simple hack alone probably cut down my Thanksgiving caloric intake by about 30-40% compared to previous years.
It’s really that simple. This is just a handful of meals out of about 1100+ I’ll eat in a single year. I didn’t rob myself of the joy, instead, I just didn’t go back for more.
You may still gain a pound or two over the holidays, but guess what? That’s better than gaining 4 or 5 pounds, right? You’ve already made a change that has improved your diet: indulge, just don’t over-indulge. Save the major diet changes for your other meals. If you never eat two unhealthy meals in a row, you’ll see the weight come down and your health improve.