When the holidays roll around, the term “survival” tends to be used for people trying to actively lose weight. However, holidays are a time to celebrate, and, let’s be honest, viewing celebrations as an obstacle course is a bit of a downer. Food is meant to be enjoyed and it is possible to enjoy your holiday favorites without ruining your weight-loss efforts. By focusing on how you eat instead of what you eat, you can enjoy these dishes without overdoing it.
- Chew patiently: Focus on the food and enjoy it by trying to slow down. Aim for 25 to 30 chews for each mouthful. If it’s your Aunt Sally’s favorite pie that only comes around once a year, savor the flavor and don’t wolf it down.
- Put the utensils down between bites: This is another technique to slowing down your pace. Recognize if the person across from you is eating fast, this may cause you to quicken your pace as well. A fast pace leads us to not recognize our fullness, and can lead to overeating.
- Wait to add more: Before taking the next bite, make sure the food you were just chewing has all been swallowed.
- Don’t aim for 110 percent full: We don’t need to be stuffed to the brim to show we enjoyed all the delicious foods. Connect your mind and body and practice stopping around 80 percent full. You may find that 20 minutes later you feel completely satisfied but not bursting at the seams and going into a food coma.
- Do not go to a party starving: Have a small healthy snack to take the edge off before you go out. After a light snack it is much easier to have restraint while choosing which food to fill up on.
Once you are at the party, you can be pickier as to what you feel like indulging in for that evening.