Affinity Health Plan

  • Health Awareness Series: December 2016 - Eating Healthy During the Holidays

    December 12, 2016

    The holiday season is a time for family, fun and food. It’s easy to get carried away by the tasty treats that seem to appear everywhere.

    These tips may help make your season healthier.

    • Holidays might not be the best time to try to lose weight. It’s better to try not to gain weight. Remember the phrase, “Calories in, calories out”. To keep your weight the same, burn up the calories you take in.
    • Plan time to exercise. Exercise eases stress and prevents weight gain. Dancing or walking are fun ways to use up those extra calories.
    • Eat a little something before you go to a party, like apple slices with peanut butter or a slice of turkey with cheese. You may be less likely to eat too many high calorie party snacks.
    •  Watch those holiday drinks:
      • Eggnog, apple cider and hot chocolate usually contain lots of sugar.
      • Alcohol not only has many calories, but drinking may make it harder to control your eating.
      • Drink a glass of water between each beverage. This can give the feeling of being full and stop you from taking that next drink.
    • Buffet tables are tempting. Before you fill your plate, look at everything on the table. That way you can choose what you most want to eat. Wait a few minutes before going for seconds. This gives your brain a chance to realize you aren’t really that hungry.
    • Use small plates. You can fill your plate without putting too much on it.
    • Don’t stand next to the food table where you might be tempted to nibble. Stand on the other side of the room and talk to your friends.
    • Bring your own healthy dish to a holiday gathering,
    • Don’t forget your fruits and veggies!
    • Cook healthy for the holidays:
      • Turkey – Turkey roasted without the skin can save 11 grams of saturated (bad) fat. Also, choose skinless white meat and don’t use too much gravy.
      • Gravy – Put the gravy in the fridge to harden the fat. Then skim it off.
      • Stuffing – Use less bread and more onions, celery, cranberries or apples.
      • Green bean casserole – Instead of using cream soup and fried onions with your green beans, use potatoes and almonds.
      • Mashed potatoes – Use skim milk or chicken broth and go light on the butter.
      • Desserts – Use low fat or skim milk instead of whole milk or heavy cream. Replace heavy cream with evaporated skim milk in cheesecakes and cream pies. Top cakes with fresh fruit or powdered sugar instead of frosting.

    Enjoy your Heart Healthy Holidays!

    American Heart Association. “Holiday Healthy Eating Guide”:
    United States Department of Agriculture. “Make Healthier Holiday Choices: 10 tips for a healthier holiday”:
    Harvard Health Publications. “12 tips for holiday eating”:
    Sutter Health CPMC. ”Tips for Healthy Holiday Eating”:
    WebMD. “The Naughty List of Holiday Foods”:

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