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How to Diet During Holiday Parties: 9 Tips from Tina Boomerina

by Tina Boomerina (Christina Gregoire)

Almost everyone overeats when they go to Christmas parties. Personally, I’m a sugar junkie. You may be into fat and salt. Others have too much fun with the eggnog and other alcoholic beverages. Here are 9 tips to help you stay on your diet during the festivities.

how to diet at christmas holiday partiesOkay. I’m gonna confess. I’m no expert on eating right, but I did a lot of soul searching about staying skinny and came up with my own ideas… then I did some research. Here are the best tips I could come up with, and even though you probably know all this stuff in your heart, it’s always good to hear it again.

1. Eat Before You Go to the Party: The worst thing you can do is to skip a meal beforehand… thinking that skipping lunch or breakfast will make up for all the goodies you’re going to be chowing down (in public) later on.

My best idea is to eat something very, very, very filling before you go to your party… and I don’t mean ice cream. Try cramming this type of stuff into your stomach just before you set off to make merry:

  • A bowl of oatmeal (or Cheerios or any high-fiber breakfast cereal)
  • A bowl of Lentil soup (or any soup)
  • A few glasses of milk or some non-fat yogurt (Actually, I just read that solid foods will make you feel fuller longer… but milk is quicker if you’re short on time.)
  • A lean steak, chicken or salmon (Protein reduces hunger cravings.)

don't get fat during christmas thanksgiving new year's parties2. Wear Tight Clothes: I read this somewhere and it’s a great idea, but I want you to bring a safety pin or two just in case you pop a zipper or a button. Tight clothing makes it impossible to eat too much without loosening your belt… and you’ll look like an idiot when your pants fall down. Fear of shame works. Besides… everyone has a phone and they can upload an embarrassing pic of you onto Facebook before you can tackle them.

3. Cut Back on Alcohol: Remember that you’re not going to a frat party, so alternate alcoholic beverages with water. If you go back and forth, you won’t get so drunk. Hey, not only are alcoholic drinks, especially holiday versions like eggnog, loaded with calories, but getting snockered means you’ll do stupid things like bending over and eating a whole pie with no hands… like the people in those pie-eating contests. Remember how this will look on Facebook. And, even if you don’t put your face in the pie, you might scarf down an extra 50 cookies because you won’t be able to control your cravings.

don't get fat during christmas parties

4. Have a Glass of Water When You Get to the Party: Before heading straight to the buffet, get a glass of sparkling mineral water (or diet pop) and study the food supply. Look for foods that are high in protein or made up of complex carbohydrates. (Complex carbs include standards like whole grains, yams, brown rice, cauliflower, zucchini, and other boring stuff. Simple carbs include everything good with lots of sugar.) Fill up on the food that’s good for you before sampling the yummy stuff.

5. Don’t Stand Next to the Food: Stand several feet away from the goodies so you can’t reach over and wolf up all the chips without thinking. And, hold a drink in your dominant hand, so you won’t lean over and grab a cookie without thinking. I read that somewhere.

6. Only Eat From Your Plate: This is related to tip #5. It’s too easy to lose count of what you’re eating if it’s coming straight from a tray or a buffet table to your yapper.

7. Only Put Two Things on Your Plate: Go back for more later. I read that having a lot of items on your plate stimulates your appetite, but I don’t remember where I read that. Anyway, it’s worth trying.

8. Skip the Dip: If you find goodies like shrimp, fresh fruit, and veggies, don’t eat them with the accompanying dip. Okay, this is impossible advice. Instead, try to eat these foods with a stingy amount of dip.

diet tip don't bake cookies biscuits9. Talk More Eat Less: The more you talk to your friends, the less time you’ll have for shoveling food into your face. And, no, you are NOT allowed to multitask by talking with food in your mouth. (Even though I have been known to forget this rule because I was raised by barbarians, you are not allowed to use me as an example.)

And, here’s my bonus tip for staying skinny during the Christmas season:

10. Don’t Bake: I don’t cook very often, if ever, but I used to bake when I was younger. It’s too easy to sample everything as you go (including the cookie dough… which they say is really bad for you when eaten raw). If you love to cook, don't test everything you make or you’ll have to bake a second batch of cookies. Instead, make your husband or boyfriend try out your goodies. Better him than you.

Sure, you know how to diet during the holidays. You know how to exercise. The problem is following through with your well-laid plans. I think the most helpful way to ration your caloric (and alcoholic) intake is to remember that everyone under 60 has a cell phone with a camera and they know how to upload a photo in about two seconds… before you realize that you have whipped cream all over your nose.

Note: I found a lot of these tips on "Top 10 Holiday Diet Tips of All Time" at WebMD.com, but many of the ideas are my own.

More Articles for Baby Boomer Women:

17 Christmas Gifts for Your Baby Boomer Man

The 6 Trends of Christmas: My Favorite Holday Clothing Styles

Holiday Party Dresses

All I Want for Christmas Are Some Jeans That Fit

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Tina Boomerina (AKA Christina Gregoire) is a Baby Boomer born at the end of 1952. Her mission is to make the internet a kinder and gentler place for Baby Boomer women around the world. Tina's specialty is fashion for women over 50.

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  1. Tina-Boomerina

    Dear Readers,

    I'm sorry to say that all this article did was make me hungry. No more diet articles for a while. Tina Boomerina

  2. Wanda S. Maxey

    Great article with some good tips. Hey, anything that helps is worth a try.
    Merry Christmas,Tina.