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Healthy Diets - for Weight Loss and Improved Health!
Dieting: Those Special Occasions


Take up the challenge
Birthdays, travel, entertaining, vacations, traditional holidays, celebrations: those special occasions are the ones which test the ingenuity of the weight wise.

Anticipate and Enjoy
First of all do not panic. Face the facts. Special occasions easily compromise 25% of the days in a year for a typical family.
Is a whole season of weight control efforts to be lost during these events? Does watching your weight mean that you cannot have pumpkin pie at Thanksgiving or a piece of birthday cake? Certainly not. The last thing you want is to feel deprived on special occasions. And, after all thin people also confront special occasions- observe how they eat.
Common sense tells us that vacations, travel or holidays may not be the best time to maintain grandiose goals of losing weight. Be satisfied with holding your weight or even gaining a pound or two and go back to your program afterwards. Here are some tips to help you enjoy special occasions without remorse or penalty.

You Are In Charge

  • Enjoy the company of your relatives and friends-minimize the role of food.

  • Do not shop too early. Do not spend days preparing food. Make a careful food plan, in writing. Do not deviate from it. Do not make cookies just to have around the house” for company.

  • Be a good role model. Serve low fat and low calorie food, for example: Trays of exotic vegetables instead of crackers, to be served with yogurt or cottage cheese based dips; or serve marinated vegetables.

  • Modify your recipes to save calories. Consult “Cooking Cleverly” and “Cooking Substitutions” in these tip sections.

  • While preparing food, chew gum or drink club soda.

  • Divide leftovers among your guests or freeze them immediately.

You're The Guest

  • If you expect to eat more than usual at the gathering, eat less the day before. Wear an outfit that just fits.
  • Ask you host whether you can bring something to the party. Prepare a low calorie appetizer
  • Do  not arrive famished.  Have a glass of milk, some vegetables, or fruit before you leave home.
  • At a buffet party do not nibble form serving dishes.  Use a small plate and fill it up with low calorie foods.
  • Talk--It is not polite to talk with your mouth full.
  • If you want second helpings choose vegetables or fruits.
  • Learn to say "no thank you" with a smile.
  • Sip slowly. Ice cubes are nice drink "extenders"

A Weight-Wise 
Holiday Dinner

  • Buy a plain turkey instead of a prebasted one: So that YOU control the amount of fat used for basting.
  • Moisten the stuffing with chicken broth and apples in addition to onions and celery, instead of fat.
  • Skim the fat off the drippings before making gravy
  • Flavor sweet potatoes with orange juice rather than with fat
  • Use evaporated skim milk in pumpkin pie instead of whole milk or cream.
  • Offer your guests some alcoholic beverages if this is their wish, but serve yourself sparkling water with lemon juice.

Don't let one day or one trip sidetrack lifelong weight control efforts.

From One Place to Another

You will rarely be served superb food on airplanes, trains, or diners along the highway.  Why should you indulge on less than exciting food?

  • As a passenger on an airline flight you can order a special low calorie meal at no extra cost by calling 24 hours in advance.  Ask for a description of the meal.
     

  • After take off, and before the meal, save money and calories by choosing the free drinks-- fruit juice, club soda.  Alcohol enhances jet lag and contributes to the natural dehydration of flying... and adds calories.  Nuts and cheese are high in calories too.
     

  • Bring staples from home: whole grain ready-to-eat cereals, muffins, fruit.
     

  • At roadside diners choose soups, and salads, sandwiches (no chips), or a stack of pancakes and a little syrup, and low fat or skim milk.

    Not to be Forgotten

    Wherever you are, EXERCISE. Stick to your regular exercise program.  On a trip, choose a hotel or motel with a pool or other physical activity amenities.  Always pack a swimming suit or a pair running shorts or your walking shoes.  Exercise is the best antidote to overeating.

    In All Circumstances

    Chances are your holiday dinner, the Sunday brunch or the meal on the road will not be the last one of your life.  Do not treat it as if it were.

    When you refrain from eating a second piece of cake think about how terrific and proud of yourself you will feel the next day.

    If you have overindulged, despite your careful planning, do not punish yourself further by repeating the feat!  Everybody does overeat form time to time.  Eat less the following day.