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Examiner
  • Tracey Shaffer: Maintain weight during holidays

  • Deciding to lose weight over the holidays may be a losing game. Strive to maintain your weight instead. Use the following hints to help you enjoy the holiday season without adding inches to your waistline.

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  • Deciding to lose weight over the holidays may be a losing game. Strive to maintain your weight instead. Use the following hints to help you enjoy the holiday season without adding inches to your waistline.
    1. Balance what you eat with other meals throughout the day. If your holiday meal is scheduled for 5 p.m., eat a small, lower-calorie breakfast and lunch so you can enjoy your favorites without overdoing it. Be careful not to skip an entire meal in anticipation of a party – you’ll end up eating more.
    2. Choose only the foods you really want and keep the portions small. Make it a balancing act. Perhaps skip the salad with dressing – you can have one any day of the year – and go for that homemade stuffing.
    3. Fill up on high-protein and high-fiber foods. Foods such as lean meats, raw veggies and whole grains contain sufficient bulk to help fill you up – leaving less room for overindulgence on empty calories in sugar-filled goodies.
    4. Eat slowly and chew thoroughly. You’ll be amazed how much will power you can generate when you take your time and give your "satiety center" an opportunity to tell you that you aren’t that hungry anymore.
    5. Beware of “liquid calories.” Eggnog can have up to 400 calories per glass. The average can of beer or soda: 150 calories. Hard liquor contains about 175 calories for just 2 ounces and wine contributes 80 calories per half cup. Reach for low-cal or calorie free beverages when possible, and save those calories for a special holiday treat!
    6. Don’t hang out near the food. Putting some distance between you and the chow creates a necessary obstacle between you and calories.
    7. Avoid salty snacks. They can make you eat and drink more.
    8. Take the initiative in preparing a healthy holiday snack or meal item.
    9. Get moving. Wouldn’t you rather burn it up than give it up? Make sure that moderate exercise is a regular part of your holiday routine. It can help burn off extra calories, tone your muscles and work off some of the holiday stresses and strains.
    10. Keep a journal. Keep track of the food you are eating so that you are not mindlessly snacking throughout the day. There are many online food journals available such as myfitnesspal.com and fitday.com that make journaling even easier.
    Brown butter & dill Brussels sprouts
    Makes: 4 servings, 3/4 cup each
    1 pound Brussels sprouts, trimmed and quartered
    1 tablespoon unsalted butter
    1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
    3 tablespoons slivered almonds, toasted
    1 tablespoon white-wine vinegar
    1 tablespoon chopped fresh dill or 1 teaspoon dried
    1/4 teaspoon salt
    1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
    1. Bring 1 inch of water to a boil in a large saucepan fitted with a steamer basket. Add Brussels sprouts, cover and steam until tender, 5 to 7 minutes.
    Page 2 of 2 - 2. Meanwhile, melt butter in a small skillet over medium heat. Cook, swirling often, until the butter turns a nutty brown, 1 to 3 minutes. Stir in oil and scrape into a large bowl with a rubber spatula. Add the Brussels sprouts, almonds, vinegar, dill, salt and pepper and toss to combine.
    Per serving: 131 calories, 10 g fat, 8mg cholesterol, 10 g carbohydrate, 0 g added sugars, 4 g protein, 4 g fiber, 172 mg sodium.
    Tracey Shaffer, RD, LD, is a  Hy-Vee dietitian at the Blue Springs location The information provided should not be construed as professional medical advice. Email her at tshaffer@hy-vee.com.
     
     

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