Thursday, November 19, 2009

How to Survive Thanksgiving on a Diet

Thanksgiving is by far one of my most favorite holidays, however all the good food is just a recipe to wreak havoc on my diet. There is definitely potential to gain 3 or more pounds in a matter of hours. Usually the next day you feel crappy, your clothes are tight, and going to the gym is the last thing you want to do. Before you know it December holidays are here and that 3 has turned into 5, into 7.

Don't let Thanksgiving pave the way to blimpdom. It's not hard if you stick to these simple rules.

1. Wear a fitted
outfit. I know how dreadful this sounds, but it works. The moment you start to realize it's necessary to unbutton your pants, you will put yourself in check. A clingy dress works just the same. Last thing you want is your geriatric Great Aunt Estelle patting your belly full of food and asking you if you are preggers.

2. Don't show up starving. If you show up starving you are going to eat everything in sight, starting with the best looking, most fattening items that are impossible to resist. Eat a protein snack like a low-fat string cheese or yogurt before leaving the house. The protein will help hold off hunger. Lately I have been a big fan of slim fast milk shake mix. It is pretty good if you toss it in the blender with ice, it's like a yummy frappe. It's also full of protein.

3. Scan the table before filling up. You may love mashed potatoes and stuffing more than life itself, but choosing raw or grilled vegetables instead is the secret to staying thin—they keep your mouth busy and fill up quickly, so you don't have room for that second piece of cornbread.

4. Bring one of your own healthy dishes. If you are eating at someone else's house, whip up your own healthy side dish and bring it. Maybe your favorite steamed veggie mix with some seasonings. Something you like that will prevent you from binging on other fatty options.

5. Steer clear of the cocktails. OK OK I know your family is hard to deal with, so one drink is fine. Make sure your drink isn't full of empty calories. Keep in mind drinking alcohol can enhance your appetite and make you eat things you normally wouldn't, on top of the empty calories.

6. Get a diet buddy. My sister, Natanya, is my diet police. She is the jedi-master of food policing. The moment I reach for that double chocolate cake, I get the evil "don't be a fatty" eye from her. Ask someone that likes harassing you, usually a sibling is the best. They relish in the free range abuse.

7. Take a walk between dinner and dessert. It will help burn off some calories and just knowing that you will have to be mobile after dinner will prevent you from overeating. It will also give you a good perspective of the exercise that will be in your future if you splurge too much on dessert.

8. Say NO to taking home leftovers. I don't care if your mom is the best cook in the world and she is guilt tripping you about the blueberry cobbler that she made just for you. Picture that doggy bag slapped on your butt and SAY NO. Do not bring food home unless it is healthy food.

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