In the colder months, heavy and warm foods such as soups and breads are eaten more often than light foods, such as vegetables and salads. To prevent weight gain in the colder months, it may come down to some basic rules. Stop eating when you are full. Warm foods sit in the stomach sooner, giving that feeling of comfort to push away the lighter foods and reach for the warm, carbohydrate laden foods. No matter the food, it is important to recognize when your body is telling you that you are full and stop, instead of continuing to eat those heavy foods that give the uncomfortable, bloated full feeling.
Try these alternatives to the common holiday foods:
Avoid: Gingerbread men, Sugar Cookies = 150-300 calories
Alt: Fruit = 80 calories
Peanut Brittle, Holiday Fudge: 2 dice sized pieces = 280 cals
Alt: For every piece of peanut brittle or fudge square you eat, alternate with a vegetable. The raw veggie can satisfy the crunch as well as offer a fiber rich food which can reduce other foods eaten later as the stomach is full.
Pecan Pie – 1/8 of 9”pie= 500 calories
Alt: Pumpkin Pie – 1/8 of 9”pie = 300 calories (homemade pie is another great way to reduce calories)
Holiday Fruit Cake = 300 calories
Alt: Fruit Crisp = 150 calories (also think that it has less crust)
Egg Nog, Alcoholic Drinks = 150 calories (or more depending on the drink)
Alt: Water = 0 calories
Read up on the article on “Low calories/low carb dishes” if you host your own holiday party for some healthy alternatives.