The holidays are the perfect time—and excuse—for everyone to indulge, or overindulge! The key is moderation. You should, of course, allow yourself a treat or two. But, you’ll want to cut back where you can (or try power-walking around the block a couple of times in between courses) to keep the calories from creating a permanent home on your hips.
We all know that trying to diet during the holidays is a real challenge and a total bummer. But, nobody wants a grumpy goose at the holiday table (any goose present should be cooked and ready for consumption). We want to try to help you find the happy medium between overindulgence and hangry cranky-pants! So, here are a few great ideas for alternatives to dishes for Christmas dinner that will help you and your family and friends have a happy and healthy holiday.
Cut Down on Butter and Cream
Sure, everything tastes better with butter! We know this. But, you can swap out just a few ingredients (like butter or cream) in classic recipes like green-bean casserole or holiday standbys like butternut squash with great, alternative recipes that cut the fat and calories to keep you on track with your fitness goals.
Leafy Greens are Not Just for Gardens
Yeah, we know. You don’t want to eat like a rabbit come Christmastime. But there are so many creative, tasty salad options these days, that we promise you won’t be bored with the ingredients. Your guests will be grateful that you’ve taken salad to the next level by offering a lighter option with all the other temptations on the table.
Easy on the Gravy
We know. We know. Gravy is everything. Everything. But, if mom didn’t dry out the turkey (sorry, mom), you should be able to get by eating some of your bird sans the delectable sauce. Note we said “some” of your bird. Let yourself enjoy the gravy, and might we even suggest putting your gravy on the side? This way you can dip into its deliciousness as needed without overdoing it.
Let the Low-Fat Eggnog Flow
For many, eggnog is a quintessential holiday treat. It’s thick and yummy and usually topped with nutmeg or cinnamon, so honestly what’s not to love? The calories for one. And, we’re just talking about straight up eggnog without its popular accompaniment of brandy. So, why not go lighter with a low-fat eggnog? Or, better yet, make your own?
Water with Your Wine
To be clear, we said with your wine, not in your wine. Enjoy your favorite Cabernet or Merlot, but after finishing one glass, opt next for water before you pour a second glass. You’ll cut down on calories and any potentially embarrassing conversations that could come from a slippery tongue that speaks too freely with more alcohol. For every cocktail or glass of wine, have a full glass of water in between. You’ll feel fuller and fresher as the holidays continue through a long week of festivities (Christmas is on a Monday this year, ya’ll).