Holiday Success Tips
For many, the holidays mark a time for celebration, friends, family and food. Unfortunately, traditional holiday fare can be high in fat and calories. Not to worry, it's still possible to enjoy holiday cuisine without putting a damper on your weight loss goals. Take the focus of the holiday off food. Instead, take time to reunite with friends and family and enjoy the pleasures of the holiday.
While food is an important element of celebrating the season, it's not the only part. Know that you can entertain for the holidays and still stay on track with your weekly action plan.
To set yourself up for success, plan your entertaining events to include a combination of food and non-food activities. One benefit of hosting a seasonal celebration is that you can be in charge of both. This will make it easier to follow your meal plan - and you might even come up with your own creative holiday traditions! After all, holiday celebrations are people events at which food happens to be present—not the other way around!
Use these tips to get you started:
The key to successful entertaining is planning, and it helps to simplify, both in terms of meal planning and recipes.
With careful planning and a little creativity, you can enjoy traditional holiday foods and still stick to a healthful eating plan.
If you're like many, you think of the holidays as a time to take a break from your typical healthy habits. People often tend to go overboard this time of year, and then try to make up for it with a new rigorous routine in the New Year. You may be surprised to know that it's actually consistency of activity and diet, rather than a pattern of highs and lows, that supports long-term success.
To help you keep consistent in the midst of holiday chaos, use these tips:
Don't Skip Meals: You may be tempted to skip breakfast and "save" all of your calories for the big feast but you could be setting yourself up to overeat. Remember to have breakfast, lunch and a snack, and follow your menu plan for the day so that when dinner comes around, you won't be starving and more likely to overdo it.
Plan for Social Situations: You can still enjoy social events while following your weight loss plan; it just takes some pre-planning. When going to a holiday party, offer to bring a vegetable platter so that you will have foods to munch on. If you are going out to eat, plan what you will eat ahead of time with our Meal Planner.
Simplify Meal Planning: Choose from one of Jenny Craig's menus or hand-selected recipes to simplify meal planning. The recipes include nutritional information and take the guesswork out of figuring portions and food groups.
Learn to Say No: Throughout your weight management program, you will have a variety of social occasions that require you to make decisions about food. It's important to know that it is okay to say no to an offer of food — don't think you're being rude or impolite. In fact, when you practice saying "no" to others, you begin to say "yes" to yourself, to the choices that serve your interests and take you closer to your goals. Keep your explanation short. Use the words "polite, reason, polite" as your mantra to close to door on any well-meaning, but potentially sabotaging, persuasion.
Here is an example of PRP (Polite, Reason, Polite):
Polite Response: "Thanks for offering, that dessert looks delicious!"
Reason for Refusal: "Dinner was perfect and I couldn't manage another bite."
Polite Response: "Maybe I'll have to try that delicious looking dessert next time."
Enjoy a Splurge: A splurge may be just enough indulgence for that special occasion. A splurge is equal to 250 calories. You can enjoy an occasional splurge and still continue to maintain consistent weight loss. To balance out a splurge, add a "spurt" of extra activity. See the table below for ideas to keep your weight loss on a consistent path throughout the season.
Here are some examples of foods and activities that can count as a splurge during this holiday season:
**All of these foods contain ~ 250 calories, and these activities will burn ~ 250 calories (based on a 200 lb person)
Brownie (4" square, unfrosted)
Dancing, 50 minutes
2 oz. piece of fudge, no nuts
Swimming, 25 minutes
1 slice (1/8 of pie) light pumpkin pie
Mall walking (4 mph), 30 minutes
Tall nonfat mocha w/whipped cream
Running (6 mph), 15 minutes
1 dinner roll w/ 1 tsp butter or margarine
Skiing (downhill), 25 minutes
1/2 cup low-fat egg nog with 1 1/2 oz. rum
Ice skating, 20 minutes
5 oz. white wine and two 2-inch pieces bruschetta
Walking the dog (3 mph), 50 minutes
1 oz. or 10 potato chips and 12 oz. light beer
Raking leaves, 40 minutes
2 (4 oz.) glasses of champagne
Playing tennis, 30 minutes