Thursday, November 07, 2013
In society hospitality is often shown with a gift of food. We take a casserole to a grieving family, new neighbor or shut-in. We bake cookies or cupcakes for a social group or club. We invite friends over for cards or games and have a spread of tasty snacks. We bake cakes, pies, cookies, candy and such as holiday gifts and we throw showers, retirement parties, going away parties, graduation parties and the like with food and more food.
We are entering the biggest hospitality food event of all - Thanksgiving, Hanukkah, Christmas, New Years, Boxing Day and Kwanzaa. FOOD is central to all of these. FOOD will happen. You can EXPECT temptation.
How do you navigate this rugged obstacle course? It takes great planning and attention to detail.
1) Identify the food events BEFORE they happen. If you are a provider of food for the even plan a healthy dish. If you are just a guest have a plan for using portion control and portion selection. This means choosing the healthier options offered and keeping the amount to a REASONABLE size.
2) Plan EXTRA cardio around the days of "food events".
3) Drink WATER before food events and DURING.
4) EAT SLOWLY - Chew your food carefully. Set your fork down between bites. Join in the conversation to slow the pace of eating.
5) Be the first one to help with table clean-up. This gives your brain a "stop" signal.
6) PLAY more than EAT. If it's a stand-up buffet visit more and eat less. Nobody will know if you have eaten already or not.
7) EAT before you go if you can discipline yourself that your "eating" is done and stick to a few carrots sticks and a low/no calorie beverage. IF you can't avoid eating then only drink water before you go.
8) IF you stumble get back up and finish the day well by doing some cardio, packing your lunch, planning a healthy meal for the next day or even pushing extra water.
9) Avoid taking others calorie-laden food gifts if they are overweight. Take fruit or a creative veggie tray instead. Pinterest is just FULL of cute ideas for arranging fruit and vegetables into turkeys, trees, etc.
10) Step on the scale. Avoiding the scale through the holidays is like closing your eyes to the charging bull. It doesn't make it go away. Stay accountable to yourself.
You too can survive the holidays with a little planning and effort.