I believe in the philosophy ‘Everything in Moderation’…It’s important for each of us to enjoy life and try new foods and experiences. We need to take time for ourselves and make sure we are providing our bodies with Primary and Secondary Foods each and every day. Here are a few of my tips to help you navigate the social scene.
We all know how easy it is to overindulge at social functions…bite-size appetizers…decadent desserts… the options can be overwhelming. I have a few tricks that can help you curb your cravings and keep you in control by learning to make smart decisions. Whether you are faced with holiday parties, weddings, birthday celebrations, or a night out…the secret to making smart choices is to treat these special occasions as simply another day. Make sure to have a game plan and try to choose lean protein and vegetables when you can. Be wary of those tempting mini-quiches and fried won-tons that are passed around…
- Fill up Before you Head Out. The worst thing you can do is cut back on food all day to save room for your event. Be sure to eat sensibly throughout your day—if you don’t nourish yourself correctly, your blood sugar will be dangerously low and you’ll be starving –this will set you up for an ‘all out eat-a-thon’ once you arrive. Try a 200-250 calorie snack such as whole wheat toast or a banana with peanut butter, an English muffin with melted string cheese, a handful of nuts and an apple. These are just a few suggestions that will keep you satisfied with a combination of protein and complex carbs to keep you from devouring the buffet. Take a look at my Snack Suggestions posts: On-the-Go Snacks and More Snacks.
- Take it Slow. Survey the buffet line, appetizers and desserts, then decide what you would like to indulge in. You can enjoy each of your favorite foods without damaging your diet, but be sure to take it slow and give yourself time to digest before you head back to the buffet line.
- Portion your Plate Correctly. At buffets, be sure to fill most of your plate with vegetables, salad and soup. Portion 1/4 of your plate for lean protein and the other 1/4 for complex carbohydrates.
- Be a Smart Cookie. Literally. One cookie is not going to kill you, however, make sure you budget yourself on your other indulgences. Before a dessert craving hits-make sure you have your veggies, salad, and soup first. These nutrient-dense foods will fill you up so you have time to second guess your cravings.
- Choose Wisely. Reach for Shrimp Cocktail, Crudites, Sliced Fruit, Sushi, Nuts and Salad.
- Try to steer clear of fruity drinks and mixers, instead opt for a clear liquor such as vodka with club soda. This alcoholic beverage carries only 100 calories, which won’t wreck your waistline or leave you with a headache the next day. If you need a bit more flavor, ask for a splash of cranberry juice and add a wedge of lime or lemon.
- Be sure to eye the bartender while he prepares your drink—a “splash” of cranberry can easily turn into a cran-tastophe!
- A few sips of punch or eggnog will not kill you, however, try to opt for the punch or sangaria with 1/2 glass of club soda instead of the powerful sugar-laden full on cocktail.
- Be sure to drink enough H2O the day of your event- the last thing you need is to be dehydrated. Moreover, be sure to drink plenty of water between drinks.
- Stick with 2 cocktails. We all know alcohol can lower our inhibitions and cause us to overdo it on the buffet and desserts.