Dr. Keith Kantor, nutritionist and panelist for Consumer Health Digest:Most holiday parties now are heavy hors d’oeuvres, which can seem like light snacks — but these appetizer-like items can pack in the calories unknowingly. It’s easy to overeat all of the seasonal treats, so take small portions to taste and try not to binge.

I recommend eating the vegetable and fruit options first, then protein options. So start with chopped vegetables with healthy fats like fresh guacamole or hummus, then move onto the proteins like meatballs, naked wings or a carved meat. Avoid excessive desserts or high sugar options, starchy casseroles or crackers with processed meats and cheeses and starchy vegetables like potatoes, bread or stuffing. This will bring the overall calories down for the meal and maintain steady blood sugars. If you are planning the meal, opt for roasted vegetables instead of vegetable casseroles.

Also, make sure you drink plenty of water. Water is your body’s main nutrient. It naturally suppresses your appetite and transports necessary nutrients to your cells. If you are not drinking at least half your body weight in ounces of water per day, you are not adequately hydrated. This could lead to poor energy, weight gain and headaches. If you decide to have alcoholic beverages at a holiday party, opt for wine or light beer instead of sugary mixed drinks and alternate the alcoholic beverage with a glass of water.

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