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Silly season can play havoc with healthy eating. It’s relatively easy to stick to a healthy eating plan when you are the one who is shopping, portioning and preparing meals. When you are visiting friends or are in a social situation, it is more difficult to stick to the rules. Although treating yourself is important, and the saying “everything in moderation” rings true, there are a few tips you can use to make sure that you don’t lose control:

  • Don’t arrive hungry! Make sure that you have had a small healthy snack before you go out. If you are feeling hungry you are more likely to make a bad choice. Equip your body to make a wise decision!
  • If you are going to a party, you could always have a healthy dinner before you go out. This way you won’t be hungry and won’t be tempted to dig into the chips/snacks/pizza etc. on offer
  • Be polite, but firm when turning down food. Don’t feel guilted into having calorie-laden snacks or cakes. Politely but firmly say “No thank you” or “Maybe a bit later.”
  • Avoid temptation. Stay as far away as possible from the buffet or snack table. Out of sight, out of mind!
  • Offer to bring snacks or contribute to the meal. Then choose healthy snacks such as popcorn, biltong, crudité (sliced veg) with hummus or cottage cheese and homemade veggie crisps.  People will appreciate your creativity and will surprisingly enjoy the healthier options
  • At a braai, choose lower fat braai options such as chicken kebabs, fish, fillet steak or chops (fat removed.) Avoid cheesy/buttery bread or potato bakes or salads and fill your plate with salads instead
  • Watch your portions and keep to the same principles and portion sizes that you would if you were eating at home
  • On the odd occasion, enjoy a treat, but watch your portions. A small slice of cake or a small bowl of dessert will suffice. There is no need to go overboard as this will jeopardise your weight loss plan
  • Have a plan with regards to your alcohol intake – and stick to it!
  • Exercise! If you know you have a very social week and may be overeating a little bit, schedule extra exercise sessions to work off some of the extra calories!

For more tips or to book an appointment, contact Toni Smyth, Dietician’s in Cape Town, on 072 999 3054.