Healthy Strategies for Holiday Parties
By Diane Giuliani, HHC This time of year, as our friends and family host holiday parties, we’re tempted to indulge in foods and snacks that we might not normally consume. Even though we know this, we frequently attend these parties with a mindset of “Oh it’s the holidays so I’m going to treat myself and eat whatever I want.” The result of these indulgences might be a sense of regret the next day.
As someone who has experienced cancer, I find myself pondering the usefulness of that mindset. Today I find that I’d rather have a different mindset and ask the question, “How can I best serve my body this holiday season?” So, in an effort to be discriminating during the holiday’s I put together a list of strategies that will allow me to refrain from trying every appetizer that’s passed and hold me back from tasting every beautiful platter of deliciousness that appears on the table. I thought if these strategies could be useful for me, that you might also. Remember, you don’t have to implement all of them but if a few of them resonate with you and seem do-able, then I invite you to use them.
- Eat something healthy and nutritious before you go to a party so that you don’t arrive hungry. Also don’t skip meals earlier in the day in order to save calories for the party.
- Bring a dish or appetizer that you know is healthy and that you’ll find satisfying.
- Be one of the last guests in line. Frequently food doesn’t look as appetizing when it’s been sampled multiple times.
- Use a smaller plate so that you have to discriminate about what you’re going to put on it.
- Be mindful – pass on the appetizers that are fried or loaded with cheese. Use vegetables instead of crackers when reaching for the dips. This choice will add extra fiber and help to keep your blood sugar more stable through the evening.
- Take the time to chew your food thoroughly.
- Choose water, flat or sparkling, with a squeeze of lemon or lime as your party beverage. However, if you do choose an alcoholic beverage, make it a wine spritzer with club soda rather than a drink made with spirits or eggnog.
- Focus on friends and conversation rather than the food.
- Offer to help the hostess with serving or doing dishes. This will keep your hands occupied and away from the temptations at the table. Your hostess will be ever so appreciative of your kindness. After all …. Tis the season of giving!
- Add exercise whenever and wherever you can. This will keep you feeling healthy and make it easier to stick to the set of strategies you design for yourself.
- And last but not least…. Be Grateful. This a beautiful time of year. Even if we might be moving through the throes of one cancer treatment or another, we can still find much to be thankful for.
Wishing you a blessed holiday and I look forward to our continued journey towards better health.
With love and appreciation, Diane
Creamy Veggie Goodness Dip
Kicking Cancer in the Kitchen – Annette Ramke & Kendall Scott
Fatigue fighting and adrenal support ~ hormone balancing ~ immune boosting
Ingredients: 6 ounces extra-firm organic tofu ½ cup sweet onion or scallions, diced 1/8 cup fresh parsley 1 kale leaf, stem removed ½ tbsp. garlic or chives, finely chopped 1 small carrot grated ½ tbsp. prepared mustard ½ tbsp. real maple syrup 1 tbsp. lemon juice ½ tbsp. brown-rice vinegar ½ tbsp. white or yellow miso 1 ½ tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil 1/8 tsp. sea salt
Directions: Place all ingredients in a food processor or high speed blender and pulse to combine until smooth. Add water by the tablespoon as needed, to reach the desired consistency. Refrigerate for a few hours to allow the flavors to mix before serving.
Serve with assorted raw vegetables.
image sourced from bettycrocker.com