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Top Holiday Diet Tips

Trim the trimmings to survive seasonal parties without gaining weight this year!
WebMD Feature
Reviewed by Louise Chang, MD

Holiday spread: It can mean those tempting goodies on a festive buffet table -- or a seasonal expansion of waistlines and hips.

But be of good cheer! A few holiday diet tips show you how to stay trim while enjoying the seasonal trimmings!

Top Tips for Your Holiday Diet

Substitute: Cook up good taste with fewer calories this year with smart substitutions. Use fruit purées or yogurt in place of butter or other spreads. In holiday recipes, two egg whites can take the place of one whole egg. Cooking with cheese? Use a reduced-fat brand -- you won't even miss the calories.

Eat! Skipping meals in preparation for holiday dining leaves you famished for all the wrong things. So eat a little protein and fiber before the holiday party. Think an egg on toast or yogurt and a piece of fruit. Now that you're fortified, you're ready for the seasonal festivities!

Love it: Once the celebrations begin, be picky. If you can get that delicious party treat during the rest of the year -- resist! Enjoy the foods you really crave -- tasty tidbits that come just once or twice a year.

Balance your party plate: Don't forget to slip protein- and fiber-rich goodies like shrimp, whole- grain crackers, and fruit kabobs beside thin slices of those favorite desserts.

Walk away: Once you've served yourself party goodies, walk away and talk with friends. You'll not only catch up with your pals, you'll naturally pace your eating, too.

Drink up: Enjoy nonalcoholic drinks between alcoholic beverages. You'll stay hydrated and still be part of the holiday revelry.

Factor in fun: Celebrate with more than food during the holidays. Get everyone active indoors with charades or dancing. Or grab friends and family and take a walk -- even if it's doing laps at the mall on sale day. Outside, the sky's the limit, from horseshoes and sledding, to building snowmen and snowball fights.

Move: Your exercise routine isn't on holiday -- you are! Even if you can't get to your usual workout haunts, you can still make exercise a priority. Aim for at least 30 minutes most days by walking around town, jogging up hotel stairs, renting a bike. Burn those extra calories, don't store them!

Try a few of these holiday diet tips and you can help keep that seasonal spread where it belongs -- on the table and off of you!

Reviewed on October 27, 2010
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