8 Tips for a Guilt-Free Holiday

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Nutritionist Fernanda Mello at Whole Foods by photographer Tuca Mellao Skaf

Nutritionist Fernanda Mello at Whole Foods by photographer Tuca Mellao Skaf

During the holidays, it is very hard to stay away from temptations. The Thanksgiving family dinner is always filled up with delicious foods and treats for us to indulge. And then, it’s inevitable that we start worrying about overeating and gaining some extra pounds you don’t want to put on. With so many holiday parties coming up, how can you still enjoy the celebrations and stay healthy?

Follow these 8 quick and simple tips, created by our nutritionist Fernanda Mello, that might help you NOT GO OVERBOARD during your Holiday spread.

1. Do not skip meals. Make sure to have breakfast and also some healthy snacks until the thanksgiving feast. If it is a dinner, don`t miss your lunch! Otherwise, you will get there STARVING and ready to eat more than you need. This is a classic mistake and people often think that they can save room or calories for later, but this will only makes you overeat! Trust me.

2. Fill it up with greens and veggies. If you start your meal with a plate filled with green leafs and vegetables, or at least half of your plate, you will feel full, but not tired and with a bad digestion after, because these are lighter fare! In addition, these foods are rich in fiber, which makes our body absorb less fat and sugar.

3. Substitute the old for a healthier option. When preparing your traditional dishes, instead of using regular milk or lots of butter to give more flavors to mashed potatoes, try tempering it with fresh or dried herbs, chicken broth and garlic. The flavor will still be amazing and you will have a low fat meal! When making deeps or sauces, replace regular creams or sour cream for low fat Greek yogurt. The consistence is very similar, but with more protein and lass fat! If you plan to make a home made pie, why not a whole-wheat crust? Less sugar and more fibers and minerals!

4. Use more fruits on your dessert. Pumpkins or apple pies usually have fewer calories than those regulars chocolate pies. If you like, adding cinnamon it is a good and healthy idea! Cinnamon helps to add sweet taste to your dessert so you don’t need to use too much sugar on your recipe and in addition to that it helps to reduce glycemic Index (levels of blood sugar).

5. Be aware of Cranberry sauce! Usually, Cranberry sauce has a lot of sugar. Instead, you could serve a cranberry salad. But, if you come across the cranberry sauce, just stick with 1 or 2 tablespoons!

6. Clean up your Turkey. Trim off the skin, you will have less cholesterol and bad fats on your meal.

7. Don’t let your food be the life of the party! Seems a little bit radical, but it really works: when everybody has finished eating, try to take all the dishes out of the table. This will avoid temptations for second helpings, not only to you but also to everybody at your party. On Thanksgiving, instead of thinking about food all the time, focus in socializing more with your friends and family.

8. Exercise yourself to offset the Thanksgiving meal. It will not allow you to not overindulge, but will help you burn some extra calories for sure!

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