Before you resign yourself to having to undo a bunch of holiday damage come January, consider some of talk show host and former reality star Bethenny Frankel’s words of wisdom on how to partake without going overboard. Her no-nonsense approach to this month’s festivities just may allow you to enjoy the rest of 2013 without regretting it later.
Here are seven of her healthy holiday tips to keep in mind throughout the season:
1. Half and half hot chocolate: If you’re in the mood for the sweet stuff, cut it in half with coffee. You’ll still get the shot of sugar, but save a few calories in the process.
2. Spoil your dinner: Smart guests know not to show up to parties empty-handed, but smart eaters know not to show up with empty tummies. Eat a fiber- and protein-packed snack before you make the rounds and you won’t be as tempted to “belly” up to the buffet.
3. Invest wisely: The holidays call for celebration, not deprivation, so go ahead and enjoy the seasonal treats. Just have a plan on where you want to spend your calories (i.e. alcohol versus desserts) and stick to it.
4. Ditch the clean plate club: The simplest yet most-ignored principle of eating is to stop when full. Don’t feel guilty for leaving a few bites – or even skipping the big entrée and snacking on more manageable appetizers.
5. Hydrate, hydrate, hydrate: Order cocktails on the rocks to get some water from the diluted ice cubes, alternate alcoholic drinks with water, and aim to drink more H2O throughout the day. Water keeps your system running properly, helps to curb appetite and – contrary to popular belief – helps beat bloat.
6. Splash it with soda: Add a dash here and there to any cocktail in place of full-strength heavy mixers. You’ll cut calories and enjoy a new bubbly take on your go-to holiday drinks.
7. Beware of the binge: Finally, don’t go into the holidays with an all-or-nothing mentality; this will only lead to a binge. Instead, make smart choices, but don’t hold yourself to unrealistic expectations.
By following a few common sense guidelines for healthy holiday eating, it is possible to ring in the New Year without wishing for your old figure!