Healthy Holiday Eating

There is nothing I love more about the holidays than enjoying the fabulous foods that flow out of the kitchen and onto my dinner plate. Unfortunately, most of the delicious foods my family makes for the holidays are not very healthy. Almost every holiday I struggle to resist my grandmother’s cheese and ham filled rice balls, her warm meat pie smothered with gravy, and most of all her soft, fresh baked seven layer cookies.

Once you step into my grandmother’s house on Christmas afternoon you are overpowered by these amazing fragrances that are impossible to turn down. Also, since my family only makes these unique dishes once a year it causes them to be even harder to turn my back on. I thought there was no way I could walk out of my grandmother’s house without overeating and screwing up my diet big time. However, last year I made a plan to stick to my diet that actually worked.

 Last year I started a holiday tradition that is easy and rewarding to continue. I knew that I would eat way too much unhealthy food and so I came prepared. I brought two plastic containers with me to my Christmas meal to package food in. Then, as I tend to do every Christmas I overloaded my plate with as much food as I could fit on it. However, instead of eating a meal about four times as big as it should be, I packaged some of the food on my plate into my container before I even began to eat. It is better to do the packaging before you start eating so that you aren’t tempted to keep eating more and more. I packaged the perfect amount of food so that I had enough to eat yet I wasn’t overstuffed. The best part was I had plenty of food to take home with me and enjoy even more delicious Christmas meals. Through the next couple of days I ate a little bit of the unhealthy holiday foods along with sides of fresh vegetables.

With my second container I did the same thing except with desserts. Every year I want to try some of every dessert. Only I end up being too full to finish them all. I either eat them all anyway because I feel too guilty to throw my leftovers away, or throw them away and then feel guilty for wasting precious desserts. Boxing them up is the perfect solution! I get to try a couple bites of every dessert and then there are still plenty of desserts for me to take home and enjoy throughout the rest of my Christmas vacation.

This year before you go to your holiday meal you should consider making a plan to eat healthy. If you make a plan ahead of time to box up some of your holiday foods you will eat less and will get to enjoy your special meal even longer. Packaging your food allows you to taste your family’s unique meal without overeating and destroying your diet. Just make a plan ahead of time and you will be able to enjoy your holiday without feeling any of the guilt of overeating.