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Halloween and Thanksgiving may already be a distant memory. But do you know how many calories you consumed from candy and Turkey-day fixings combined?
A lot. The average adult packs away 4,500 calories to polish off a day of eating for Thanksgiving. And if you’ve got a typical sweet tooth, you probably eat about 152 pounds of sugar a year, according to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.
And the holidays aren’t even over. There’s still a few weeks left of office parties, family gatherings, potlucks, and sweet treats until the new year rolls around.
But you don’t want to start the new year with regrets about how much you ate during the holidays. Instead, start now to set some limits on your diet.
You can still enjoy a few holiday treats and food. But if you try to navigate the next few weeks without a plan, there’s a good chance you’ll tip the scale in the wrong direction.
Here are some things you can do to eat healthy, and still enjoy the holidays:
Make it a priority to eat healthy foods (fruits, vegetables, whole grains, lean meats, nuts and seeds, legumes).
Practice portion control. If you go out to eat, split a meal in half with someone else. Or ask for a to-go box with your meal and save half for later.
Eat before you go. Have a party you’re planning to host or attend. Plan to eat a healthy snack before you go, so you’re less hungry, and less likely to devour high-calorie drinks and desserts.
Beware of the buffet line. It’s fine to make one trip through. But avoid going back for seconds or thirds.
Choose healthier options whenever possible. For example, grilled salmon and vegetables with a glass of water, are healthier than deep-fried nuggets, french fries, and a soda.
Avoid or limit alcohol, which can contain a lot of empty calories, and lead to other problems.
If you do eat too much, don’t be too hard on yourself. Just get back on track and resume eating healthy.
You want to avoid overeating during the holidays. But good food is part of the fun. Eat healthy most of the time. Make time for exercise. And you’ll be just fine.