A: As the holidays approach, so do the food temptations. Who can ignore the delicious taste of holiday turkey or the sweet smells of pumpkin pie? Eating healthy over the holidays is certainly a challenge of commitment, but with a little preparation, you can keep the holiday pounds at bay while still celebrating with family and friends. The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics (www.eatright.org) has put together a list outlining some healthy eating approaches to keep in mind during the holiday season:
• Forget the all or nothing mindset. Depriving yourself of special holiday foods, or feeling guilty when enjoying them is not a healthful strategy. Rather, enjoy those foods in moderation or look for healthier preparation options for those favorite holiday foods.
• If you plan on treating yourself later, start your day with a small meal that includes whole grains, fruit, low-fat or fat-free dairy and protein like eggs, ham or peanut butter.
• Don’t starve yourself beforehand. Rather, eat a small, lower-calorie meal or snack so you aren’t tempted to overdo your calorie intake for the day.
• Choose carefully among foods you definitely will eat, those you will sample and those you will skip.
• Don’t rush to eat. Socialize and settle into the festivities before you eat.
• Move your socializing away from the buffet or appetizer trays. This will minimize the unconscious nibbling.
Preparation is the key for healthy holiday eating. For more information, visit www.eatright.org.
Information provided by Jenny Hornsby, Dallas County Hospital, 610 10th St., Perry, 465-3547; www.dallascohospital.org.