Posts Tagged ‘Holiday Eating’

Diet Doomsday is coming

November 24, 2010

Tomorrow is Doomsday if you’ve been trying to watch your weight.

Not to get all apocolyptic on you, but chew on this:  The average person consumes around 3,250 calories at the Thanksgiving table.  The FDA recommended intake is 2,000.  You need to be eating less if you’re trying to lose weight.  And let us also not forget that Thanksgiving marks the start of the month long eating binge known as the holiday season.

But Thanksgiving (and Christmas and all those holiday parties and New Years) doesn’t have to be a diet wrecker.  Wouldn’t you like to enjoy the Thanksgiving meal without the extra helping of guilt that usually accompanies it? 

Here’s how:  moderation.

Sure it’s not the easiest thing to do (Lord knows, I struggle at every big meal), but it works. 

Have a little bit of everything and instead of having second helpings of everything, help yourself to only those things you really, truly enjoy eating.  I personally like to go back and have those things I only eat at Thanksgiving, like the stuffing.  Sure you can swear off the carbs and pull the skin off the turkey, but odds are you’re going to be miserable and stuff yourself silly when dessert rolls around.  If you enjoy what you’re eating when you’re eating it, you’re going to be more satisfied and therefore less hungry. 

And remember moderation applies to exercise as well, so after the dishes have been cleared, take a short walk.  You’ll feel better about yourself and won’t second guess having pie for dessert.

Above all, just remember to relax, enjoy the time spent with family and give thanks for your good health.  On Friday, you can get back to the regular grind.

Happy Thanksgiving!

Turkey trotting

September 21, 2010

Fall officially starts tomorrow.  Time to start planning your Halloween costume and deciding which house you’ll be spending Thanksgiving at. 

Ah, Thanksgiving, a time when we give thanks for what we have my stuffing ourselves silly with turkey and all the trimmings.  If you’re one of those people who usually feels guilty after eating the traditional meal, why not pre-empt the guilt by participating in Sparta, New Jersey’s Turkey Trot

If you can get away from the kitchen, head out to Lake Mohawk for a 1 mile fun run early Turkey Day morning.  If you’re feeling a little more ambitious, there’s also a 5k run/walk.  Registration fees are $10 and $23 respectively until 10/31.  You’ll get water, fruit and bagels at the end, but don’t forget to save room for the turkey!

Snack Wars: Mexican Fiesta

May 5, 2010

It’s Cinco de Mayo!  Today marks the Mexican army’s unlikely victory over French forces at the Battle of Puebla on this day way back in 1862.  But who are we kidding?  It’s one of the two days of the year when drinking copious amounts of alcohol on a weekday is ok.  (The other day is Saint Patrick’s Day).  So, what’s your poison of choice this fifth of May, tequila or sangria?

 

 

VS.

 

 

 

 

Round One:  Calories

A six ounce frozen margarita packs about 246 calories per serving.  You’ll save some calories if you opt to have your cocktail on the rocks.  One glass of sangria has about 150 calories.

Round Two: Carb Grams

Frozen margaritas are usually made with some kind of sweet mixer.  That means a lot of sugar and carbs.  That six ounce serving has about 27 grams of carbs.  There are 8 if you’re knocking back the margarita on the rocks.  This time, sangria is not much better…an 8 ounce glass contains 21 carb grams.  

Round Three:  The Worst Hangover

Too much of any of these two drinks is going to leave you hurting in the morning.  From personal experience, I can tell you the frozen margarita hangover is the worst.  All that sugar and alcohol leaves you with quite the upset stomach and bad taste in your mouth.  That’s not to say the red wine headache is any better.

Winner:

This one’s really a toss up, as it depends on personal tastes.  If  you’re going out tonight, don’t forget about the buff broad motto of consuming things in moderation.  You don’t want to find yourself down for the count tomorrow morning!

An Easter goody

March 30, 2010

Just in time for Easter, there’s more good news about eating chocolate.  All I can say is…bring it on Easter Bunny!

Jesus Christ, Super Sized

March 23, 2010

If there was any doubt serving portions have gotten larger, here’s some food for thought.   A Cornell University researcher analyzed dozens of famous painting of the Last Supper (yes, that one) and found food portions have grown larger in more recent ones.  Just how much larger? 

Over time, the size of the main dish has grown 69 percent, the size of the plate 66 percent, and bread portions23 percent in the images.  The study is published in April’s International Journal of Obesity.

While I don’t think the study holds much weight and is timed to conveniently coincide with Holy Thursday, it’s definitely something to think about when you sit down to Easter dinner next weekend.

Why to Heart Chocolate

February 12, 2010

Ok, so we’ve all heard the claims about how chocolate is good for our health.  But how much of it is true and how much of it is a Valentine’s Day sale tactic?  Here’s the choco-lowdown.

Not all chocolate is created equal.  To get the benefits from chocolate, stick to the dark kind.  Even better…cocoa powder. (Mmmm…hot chocolate!)  Milk chocolate is fine, but not as healthy.  And forget about the white stuff…there’s no cocao in it at all.

It’s all about the flavo(noids).  The darker the chocolate, the more flavonoids it contains.  Flavonoids act like anti-oxidents and are the reason chocolate can be healthy. 

Understanding the Chocolate Label.  Store shelves are chock full of chocolate bars containing 75% or even 85% cocoa.  What that refers to is the percentage of cacao bean solids present in the bar.  The more cacao, the less sugar. So:
• A 75% cacao bar has 25% sugar.
• A 65% cacao bar has 35% sugar.
• The higher the % cacao, the less sweet the bar and the stronger the chocolate taste.

You don’t need to eat those bars to reap the benefits.  Ever try one of those 75% cocao bars?  If you liked it, great.  If not, don’t worry.  While it’s true those bars contain more flavonoids, why eat chocolate you don’t like?  The point is to indulge in something you enjoy!  Remember, even milk chocolate has some benefits…just be careful not to over indulge because it does contain more sugar and fat.

So, what are those benefits? Those flavonoids I’ve been talking about have been linked to a reduced risk of heart disease by enhancing blood flow, improving LDL cholesterol levels and, in some cases, reducing blood pressure.

Happy Valentine’s Day!

Calling Foul on Healthy Super Bowl Snacks

February 5, 2010

This being the Friday before the Super Bowl, you’re going to see a lot of space devoted to healthy recipes for Sunday’s big game.  Not here.  Here’s why.

While I don’t think you should totally pig out on Sunday, I don’t see anything wrong with indulging with some pizza, nachos or beer.  The key, is to do so in moderation.  I know, this sounds a whole lot easier than it is to do, but with a gameplan, it’s an attainable goal. 

Here’s what I do…

Insane (but creative) Super Bowl snack

Eat a snack or small meal before the actual party itself.  The less hungry you are, the less likely you’ll grab and eat whatever’s been laid out.

Don’t stand/sit in front of the food.  I’ve heard this over and over again, but I finally put it to practice last weekend and you know what, it worked.  It’s that whole “out of sight, out of mind” thing.

If you do visit the snack table treat yourself.  Pick the foods you really like, but don’t usually eat because they’re “unhealthy”.  Just remember to not finish off the platter.

When it comes to drinking, just remember to alternate every alcoholic drink with a glass a water.

Go to the gym before the festivities.  Do this not to offset the calories you think you’ll eat, but as a way to remind yourself later not to over do it.  Thinking about all that huffing and puffing you did to burn 100 calories does wonders when it comes to reaching for thirds.

AND MOST IMPORTANTLY…

Don’t worry if you do overdo it.  It’s all those days of doing the right things that matter, not the one day that you fall off track.  Pick yourself up, dust yourself off and get back to doing what makes you feel healthy on Monday.

It’s all about the family, not the food

December 29, 2009

This time of year, a lot of space is dedicated to how you should eat during the holidays.  (This blog is guilty of that.)  But a lot of us (myself included) sometimes forget that there are one or two people at our holiday table for whom the act of eating together is torturous.  It takes a lot of discipline to not say or do the wrong thing to these people, but we should try.  It DOES make a difference.  Here’s an example of how.

Monday Music Madness

December 28, 2009

Ate a little too much this weekend? I’ve got the fix.  Download these songs, head to the gym and watch that holiday bloat disappear!

Funhouse — Pink

Drop It Low — Ester Dean with Chris Brown

How Low — Ludacris

Body Language — Jesse McCartney

Christmas Cheer!

December 24, 2009

I don’t feel like talking about exercise or weight watching or calorie counting today.  (It’s Christmas!) So instead…I’m bringing you a couple of things that put a smile on my face this time of year…

First up…christmas lights choreographed to music.  (I swear I will do this to my house one of these years!)

Next…it’s the best (and by that I mean the worst) version of “O Holy Night” I’ve ever heard.

And finally a little bad santa humor courtesy of the folks over at failblog.org:

Merry Christmas!