Motherhood Moment Blog
By: Dr. Keith Kantor
How can people avoid holiday weight creep?
Weight creep happens over a period of time, not in one day. My advice is to enjoy the day of the holiday and resume your normal nutrition and fitness regimen throughout the rest of the holiday season. All throughout the year there are events that come up with unhealthy food temptations and it simply comes down to the 80/20 rule, 80% of the time make healthy decisions and avoid sugar, skipping workouts or eating processed foods and 20% of the time you can cut yourself some slack and have a cocktail, slice of cake or maybe those truffle fries that smell so good. Prioritize maintaining a healthy and consistent lifestyle during the holiday season, you will feel more energized and less stressed too.
What are some strategies for meals not at home?
Fill up your plate with vegetables, proteins and limit the starchy carbohydrates and desserts. Day to day meals throughout the holiday season should be loaded with vegetables like large salads, soups that are broth or tomato based, or simply meat and roasted vegetables. Make a conscious effort to have extra healthy options at home to compensate for all of the tempting foods at work, school, parties, or events with friends and family. Avoid bringing home leftovers from a friend or family member’s party and if you are gifted with treats share them, serve them or re gift them, you can have a small taste and then get rid of them!
If you are drinking alcohol avoid the cocktails with sugary mixers and alternate your drinks throughout the night with a glass of water, this will naturally result in less alcohol consumption while keeping you hydrated.
For hosting holiday dinners, what are some good options that are healthy and crowd-pleasing?
Colorful fruits and vegetables accompanied with protein and healthy fats should be the base of what you are preparing.
Appetizers can be homemade guacamole with chopped vegetables, buffalo turkey or chicken meatballs, skewers with tomatoes, mozzarella, and fresh basil, be creative with appetizers that incorporate fresh fruits, and vegetables.
The main course should have a protein (pork loin, turkey, prime rib, etc.) a few vegetables options like a giant tossed salad, a large pan of roasted vegetables, and chose one carbohydrate option like sweet potatoes or a rice pilaf.
Don’t go overboard with dessert, chose 1 or 2 options and let that be it. Sugar is the main culprit of holiday weight creep so make sure that you limit those options. Dark chocolate covered strawberries or mini cakes are options that promote portion control.
Here is one of my favorite simple recipes as a vegetable side dish at any holiday meal.
Roasted Beets and Sweets
Prep time: 10 min.
Cook time – 1 hour
Number of servings – 6
Serving size – 0.5 cup
Difficulty – easy
Gluten free, dairy free, high fiber
3 medium beets, peeled and cut into chunks
1 tablespoon olive oil, divided
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1 teaspoon ground black pepper
3 medium sweet potatoes, cut into chunks
1 large sweet onion, chopped
- Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
- Toss the beets with ½ tablespoon olive oil to coat. Spread in a single layer on a baking sheet and cook for 20 minutes.
- Mix the remaining olive oil, salt, pepper and sweet potatoes and onion and place on the baking sheet with the beets.
- Reduce temperature to 400 degrees and continue baking for 40 minutes, stirring after 20 minutes, until all vegetables are tender.