4 Quick Tips to Handle Holiday Temptations

Valentine’s Day is just around the corner and it won’t be long until Easter. Holidays can be a mine field for weight loss unless you are prepared.

Abundance of Candy
Holidays like Valentine’s Day and Easter can be especially hard, as those holidays that seem to revoke around chocolate, puffed marshmallow chicks, and candy galore. Although holidays are challenging, if you have a plan in place, they do not have to ruin your weight loss effort. Here are four quick tips to help you get through the holidays feeling triumphant rather than defeated.

1. Decide In Advance

The first thing I do when a holiday is approaching is decide in advance whether I will partake in the “treat” aspect of the holiday. I know that seems simple, but so often mistakes are made from lack of preparation.

2. Rate Your Food 

Rate the available foods on a scale of 1 to 10. If those candy eggs or cheap chocolate hearts are not all that good, pass them up. For me, if a dessert or other high calorie food is not a nine or a ten, I automatically pass it up. If it is a nine or ten, then I decide if it fits in with my meal plan for that particular day and whether I even want it. Passing up foods and treats that are a one or a two is easy and gives you a sense of accomplishment. If you do choose to have a dessert or some candy, limit your portion sizes.

3. Bring Food

If we are going to someone’s house for a holiday party such as exchanging Valentine cards with my children’s friends, I always bring food. This ensures that there are some healthy options and helps me avoid feeling stuck having to turn down foods that I will not eat.

4. Exercise Self Control

In the face of candy on every end cap in the grocery store and high calorie entrees at social events, I often rely on good old-fashioned self-control to avoid eating too much. I use small plates, commit to making the healthiest choices possible, and avoid going back for seconds unless it is salad or vegetables. Then, I make sure to spend lots of time talking with friends, keeping up with the kids, or playing games.

As you celebrate these upcoming holidays, I hope that you will enjoy the day and realize that healthy eating at holidays is just like any other day. It is about good choices and reasonable expectations.

Do you have any tips for handling the holidays that may help someone else? Diane

4 thoughts on “4 Quick Tips to Handle Holiday Temptations

  1. Nancy B. Kennedy says:

    I’m fortunate that holiday candy doesn’t appeal to me at all! At least not what passes for chocolate when you buy Hershey’s, Russell Stover or the like. It tastes like wax to me. The one thing that helped me lose weight was to allow myself one small square of really good dark chocolate at the end of the day. Dark chocolate ruins you for — or releases you from! — the desire for cheaply made milk chocolate.

  2. Leah says:

    For me it’s about diminishing returns – if there is a specific special occasion, like a wedding or party, it’s easy to say “It’s a special occasion, I’m going to splurge!”

    But if there are four events in one week, then they’re not special (at least in terms of food). It’s okay to separate the special event of a wedding (share in the joy, dance your butt off, celebrate and be merry) from the food. We went to a wedding last month and I decided that even though the event itself was really special, there was no reason I couldn’t treat it like a normal day of eating for me – no splurging required. It’s not easy, but it’s definitely helped me to think “I don’t need to splurge here.”

    • Janis says:

      This is the danger of making exceptions for splurging — there are so many holidays throughout the year, and there are ALWAYS candy and food associated with them. It’s New Years, so you have to indulge at the party, and it’s only once a year. Then, Valentine’s Day, another once-a-year splurge on chocolate hearts and things. Then, St. Patrick’s Day, and you have all those green cake pops and cupcakes, only once a year. Easter follows, with once-a-year chocolate eggs and jelly beans … and it wraps all the way around the year until you go into Halloween with once-a-year candy corn, and the once-a-year Thanksgiving and Christmas food celebrations. Pretty soon, “once a year” is once a year, 365 times. 🙁

  3. Sheila says:

    Great tips Diane,

    I’ll try that this Valentine’s day, and the others coming up.
    Thanks so much for your article’s. they really make me think.

    Thanks for all you do for the Blogsphere.

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