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Healthy Holiday Eating Tips from CT Academy of Nutrition & Dietetics

The Connecticut Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics releases these tips as a "Holiday Survival Guide to Healthy Eating."

The Connecticut Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics gives the green light to Santa to enjoy some cookies this holiday season, but keep it limited to the Holidays and be careful not to overindulge.

“The Holidays are meant to be enjoyed and you should take the opportunity to eat your favorite foods and cherish the time with family and friends,” said May Harter RD, MS, CD-N, President of CT Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. “The challenge is trying to balance how much of your favorite foods you eat during this feast-filled time of the year.”

The CT Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics whose membership includes Registered Dietitians and Dietetic Technicians, serves the public through the promotion of optimal nutrition, health, and well-being.  This year they have released some Holiday Survival Tips for you and your loved ones to stay healthy and fit as you enjoy the Season.

Holiday Survival Tips

Stay on Track & Avoid Overeating this Holiday Season:

Submitted by Sarah Borque, Registered Dietitian and Academy member:

  • Watch your portion sizes – keep the MyPlate model in mind (half of your plate should be fruits and vegetables, a quarter grains (think whole grains as often as possible), and a quarter lean quality proteins)
  • For dessert, enjoy that slice of cake or sweet treat, but do not let that snowball into a month-long binge on sugary foods. You do not have to feel guilty about having a portion of your favorite comfort food, as long as you practice moderation.
  • Exercise is a great way to balance some of your holiday eating, but it can be difficult to fit into your hectic holiday schedule. If you are regularly active, try to stay flexible with your workout schedule during the holidays.
  • If you aren’t regularly active, adding something as simple as taking a walk around the neighborhood after a large meal can help offset any of your holiday eating.
  • Look at the entire table before taking any food. Decide what foods you’d like to eat and what foods you can ignore, and stick to your decision as you go down the line.
  • Have a healthy snack before you leave home.  This will help prevent you from overeating when you arrive at a party.
  • Eat your calories instead of drinking them. Stick to low or no-calorie drinks, but if you want to splurge on some Eggnog, stick to a 4-6 oz. portion.
  • Stay hydrated. Drink at least 4-6 glasses of water throughout the day to keep hydrated and help control your appetite. Sometimes the body confuses thirst for hunger!
  • If you are hosting, be sure the menu includes lower-calorie foods, like fruit and veggie platters and lean meats.
  • Try not to hang out near the food (this can only lead to more temptation to overeat). Instead, focus on enjoying people you are celebrating with.

“While healthy eating can be tricky, especially during the holiday season, it is not impossible,” added Harter.

“You can be around the people you love and enjoy your favorite holiday treats. Just remember to take a small portion, eat slowly, and savor the taste and texture of your food. Mindful eating makes a huge difference.”

About the Connecticut Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics

The Connecticut Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics serves as the leading advocate of the dietetic profession in Connecticut, serving the public through promotion of optimal nutrition, health, and well-being. Our membership includes Registered Dietitians, Registered Dietetic Technicians, students, and retirees of the profession. Chartered by the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, they are committed to serving the public in the state of Connecticut, while supporting activities at the national and international level.For more information visit the acdemy's website.

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