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My good friend Beatrice lost about twenty pounds over the past four months. She shared with me that her weakness for desserts around the holiday season may cause her to relapse! She said that her cravings for certain foods actually keep her awake at night. She went on to say that she was invited to several holiday parties and she plans on attending all of them as she has worked hard to fit into all of her holiday dresses!

I told Beatrice that I have been in her shoes so I know what she is going through. Food can be addictive but you don’t have to deprive yourself of everything you love. I’ll be damned if I’m giving up my crab cakes, red wine, and occasional cream of crab soup! However, I will control my caloric intake by tracking my calories, even the unhealthy choices. I told her that my diet is about 85% clean. I won’t overindulge, but I will partake in an occasional indulgence.

Beatrice asked, “How do you avoid overindulging? You obviously have willpower.” So, I gave Beatrice five tips on how to avoid overindulging during the holiday season.

  • Slow down baby- “The ripper the master the overlordian’, playin’ MCs like an old accordion!” Can you name that tune? You guessed it! Those are rap lyrics from LL Cool J’s verse in the song titled “Rampage” released by EPMD almost 30 years ago! The hook was “slow down baby”. Eat your food slowly and enjoy every bite. Sometimes eating too fast makes me feel like I need a second plate when I’m no longer hungry. Wrap that second plate up in aluminum foil and take it home for the next day. You don’t need it tonight.


  • Use smaller plates- Smaller plates makes it appear that you have more food than what you really have. You may find that you are satisfied once you’re done eating. Throw that paper plate in the trashcan and get away from the buffet table, please.


  • More veggies please! –Why not double that serving of vegetables! It may help you to avoid doubling your serving of unhealthy choices and it will keep you regular if you know what I mean. Please try not to use the bathroom at the party unless you really can’t wait. We don’t want to offend the other guests!


  • Limit alcohol consumption, but have a lil’ somethin’– Remember, alcohol has calories just like food. I’d rather waste calories on something delicious rather than consuming empty alcohol calories. But, if you must have a drink, don’t overdo it. I prefer red wine because of the health benefits. I also like a little pink Moscato every now and then. Like Kid N’ Play used to say, “ain’t gonna hurt nobody”.


  • Consider tracking your calories- Track everything, even the unhealthy food. This will help you to stay within a calorie budget and to avoid overeating. There are several apps available. I use My Fitness Pal religiously.

Readers, I would encourage you to maintain a healthy diet and stay active to avoid pitfalls. Also, I’m not a fan of deprivation. You may be more successful if you allow yourself to have a treat from time to time. Do you have any tips to offer our community about maintaining good health during the holiday season?




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  1. The food prepared and offered during the holidays is not only delicious comfort food, it is loaded with calories!

    However we can enjoy and treat ourselves provided that we don’t go overboard!

    While everyone around me is carnivore, I go for all veggies and vegan option!

    Feels great and i can eat as much as I want and oh yes, I’ll have some wine too 😉

  2. I always go for the smaller plates and as a rule of thumb make sure that 50% of the items on my plate are veggies (minus the dip), really helps with the after party “guilt”. These are some really great tips, thanks for sharing 🙂

  3. Moe,
    These are really great tips for the holidays, and for any time actually. Slowing down is so important; in our fast-paced world, we oftentimes rush to gobble down our food during the lunch hour so that we can run errands, etc. This trains us to always eat quickly. Also, the extra veggies really help me. Adding water consumption is another big help. Thanks again for these very practical and wise tips!

  4. It can be really tough to indulge at the holidays without going overboard. I’ve also been blogging on this topic lately, because it’s an issue for so many of us. I totally agree about loading up on vegetables and limiting alcohol intake.

    There are actually so many little tricks we can use to keep things within reason when we indulge. It’s important that we all share evidence-based advice and strategies that have worked for us in the past. It can be an uphill battle, but it’s easier when we fight it together.

  5. Yesss this is such a struggle of mine too. I like to make sure I am fully hydrated before attending an event, and drink a glass of water before eating, I find it helps me make a healthier choice!

  6. Oh I agree with the the alcohol part. I think I over consume in that department way too easily. It is all a part if the holiday celebrations, and then you regret it the next day. Honestly as I have gotten older alcohol has not been agreeing with me, so maybe this year I will be lucky with the unwanted calories.

  7. Great tips for sure, I already track my calories so this is a must to continue doing.. I also work out daily so I hope I dont gain a lot of calories this season 😉

  8. Great post! I have battled this all my life. I yo-yo a lot! I try so hard then give up. I need to have someone who keeps me accountable so maybe I should find an app and track everything.

  9. Some great tips here! I’ve found it hard to fit in the gym since the start of December – theres just so much to do. Missing the gym makes it even more important to watch the food (and alcohol!) intake though. I think slowing down is a good one – that goes for drinking as well as eating too.

  10. The two tips I need to follow are eating more veggies and only drinking a littttle! I’m trying to lose a few pounds before heading to Key West next month and need to really watch myself and how much I’m eating/drinking on vacation the next couple weeks! Veggies are a great source of energy and obviously much better to snack on than chips or fries 🙂 xo

  11. Slowing down is my favorite tip! It’s important to actually enjoy the food!!! Often I find myself overindulging and hating what I’m eating. It’s a lose-lose situation!

  12. It is so important to have a strategy in place ahead of time so we can avoid overindulging at all the holiday get-togethers. I tend to choose the smaller plate size, it tricks my brain into eating less! Even though not as much food can fit on the smaller plate, I will still feel full afterwards and therefore will have eaten less.

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