Imagine that you go to a fancy party and say with utmost sophistication, “I’m dieting.” A few minutes after, you see your friend with a pretty, decked-up cupcake that looks too savory to resist. You go to the counter, pick up a cupcake and see if anyone is looked at you from the corners of your eyes. “Thank God!” Nobody saw you, and you spend the rest of your day like the climax of a happily-ever-after movie.
Festivities and gatherings are a part of our everyday life. As the social animals that we humans are, it becomes challenging to keep up with a diet. As a result, we lose motivation to carry on, and we grow apart – us and the diet.
You ask what harm would have the cupcake done? Not much. If you want to know a unit of comparison, 200 extra calories a day can make you gain about two to three pounds over a 5-6 week period, which is the weight you will take another two or three months to shed. So, eating a tiny cupcake is not a good idea, no matter how small it is, because after all, the size matters.
If you’re suffering from a condition similar to this, I may help you with the following tips:
Don’t eat everything at feasts and parties. You only have limited calories to spend, choose wisely what you eat.
Follow the ten-minute rule. Give your stomach a break of ten minutes before you go to the next portion, as your stomach may need this much time until it communicates your brain that it is full. Drink water during this break, and confirm whether you’re full, or want to take a smaller second portion.
Fill up before you get out. So do you deliberately want to spend your precious, extra calories on an unnecessary portion of food? If your answer is no, you better fill your stomach up before you leave your home to not feel hungry all the time.
Because distance plays cupid sometimes. To avoid any confusion, the distance from the food counter will play matchmaker between your body and good health. Avoid standing or sitting too close to food counters to avoid binging and munching snacks uselessly while chattering with people.
Alcohol can be your foe. Alcohol on an empty stomach increases your appetite, and you lose control over what you eat.
Walking or dancing shoes? Yes. I love wearing walking shoes everywhere I go – except for it is a fancy party that needs me to dress up! My happy walking shoes keep the vibe from getting killed. I don’t want to sit down wearing a handsome pair of walking (or running) shoes. Consecutively, I remain active throughout the day.
Fresh fruits and veggies are worth a treat. Don’t skip the fruit and vegetable counter at parties as they are, perhaps, your best friends there. They are easy to eat and are healthier alternatives for junk-some snacks.
Be buffet savvy and raid the buffet before you pack your plate. It is better than loading your plate with food items one after another.
Avoid shopping hungry. If you shop hungry, you will end up at your favorite cafe you’d been successfully avoiding for 17 days. Because once in a while does no harm, right?
Cook for and from your heart. If you want to live a healthy life, cook food that’s healthy for your heart. You can be creative and cook recipes that use less cream, butter, vegetable shortening, lard and other things rich in saturated fats and cholesterol. Prefer turkey and fish over red meat.
Holidays, festivities and other social gatherings are about many things, not only food. It is more about family and friends coming together and sharing moments and days of happiness, and sometimes grief, with each other. Gathering matters more here. Don’t avoid gatherings and festivities only because you can’t control your diet. Try these tips instead.