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
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
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"
- 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
- 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
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.