The holidays are known for a few indulgences. Eggnog cocktails and Christmas cookies really only come but once a year, so I think we should enjoy them without guilt. The challenge is not usually the cookies, it’s every day eating and surviving busy schedules. Christmas shopping, house guests and multiple Christmas parties each come with their own set of challenges but if you have a plan you will be successful.
My most important tip here is to eat before you go and make sure it includes veggies to fill you up and protein so that it will last. Make a quick wrap with tinned tuna and Mann’s rainbow salad. Grab a bag of string less sugar snap peas to dip in hummus, toss together a quick salad with a ready to eat bagged salad sprinkled with pumpkin seeds and drizzled with your favorite dressing. Food fairs become much too tempting when you are hungry.
My second tip is to bring a small snack. Either pack in in your coat pocket or your purse. I suggest a mandarin orange and a ziplock bag with a few nuts and dried fruit. Small, portable and not too messy.
Christmas Party Survival:
Don’t save up by not eating all day or you will be sure to overconsume at the party. Try to have lots of vegetables during the day, especially at your lunch, since there may not be as many vegetables on a table of appetizers. Bring a Nourish Bowl to work for a quick lunch. It’s quick, easy and veggie filled with lots of flavour. Just remove the plastic, cover the bowl with a plate and microwave for 3-4 minutes. There are several flavours, including a Spicy Thai Veggie Noodle and a Southwest Chipotle.
Have an apple before you go to the party just to make sure you aren’t starved.
At the party, have conversations away from the food table, use a plate when you serve yourself, so you can account for how much you have eaten and choose lower calorie items such as chilled prawns, chicken skewers and vegetables and hummus instead of cheese and pate.
House Full of Guests:
I love entertaining, but when you have house guests for several days it can become tiring. Before guests arrive try to jot down the meals you plan to serve and buy the groceries, so you are ready to go. One pot meals like stew, soup and chili are great to serve a group. Assemble yourself meals like fish and beef tacos are great for families with picky eaters. Save yourself some time and effort by purchasing a few convenience items to round out your meals. I love the PowerBlend Slaw by Mann’s which includes Brussel sprouts and kale. Add sliced apple or pomegranate seeds to make it your own. Washed and pre-cut vegetables can also save you time in the kitchen. Don’t forget you don’t need to do it all yourself. Family usually love to help and cooking together is a great way to catch up.
Most importantly, relax, enjoy some down time and make time for some activity.