Wednesday, December 4, 2013

4 tips for healthy eating and drinking over the holidays

Pooja Mottl

When the holidays come around, it can be hard to stay on track with a healthy diet. With parties, family get-togethers, Thanksgiving, and everything else in between, it can be easy to let things slide. What's one more cocktail, right? Those little things can add up if you're not careful. This year, try using some helpful tips like these from Pooja Mottl, a professionally trained natural foods chef and author of The 3-Day Reset: Restore Your Cravings For Healthy Foods In Three Easy, Empowering Days to help you stay in shape this holiday season.

  1. Eat only “WAMP” foods, which stands for “Whole and Minimally Processed." WAMP foods include poultry, meats, and fish prepared in simple ways as well as fruits, vegetables, whole grains, beans, lentils and key cooking ingredients and seasonings such as butter, cacao, plain yogurt, maple syrup, honey, olive oil, mustard, and soy sauce. WAMP foods do not contain any additives, preservatives, flavorings, refined flour, sugar, fats, or salts. This means that when you’re at a party, you’ll want to stick to dishes, appetizers and mezzes that are WAMP – olives with whole wheat pita bread and hummus, grilled chicken finger food, roasted vegetables, raw fruits and vegetables, etc.
  2. While on the cocktail party circuit, stick to only wine and/or champagne. Both wine and champagne rake in about 120 calories per glass and have no added sugars or simple syrups like most mixed drinks do. Stick to only a glass per party and about three to four per week during the party season. It only comes once per year, so don’t feel guilty about indulging. Just do it in moderation and in this clean, simple way.
  3. Skip Dessert for 70% + chocolate bar at home. Because most desserts contain white, refined flour and refined sugar, they’re not WAMP, and they’re not healthy. Try your best to skip those tempting treats on the party circuit. Instead, wait until you get home and indulge in a much healthier kind: a chocolate bar with at least 70% or higher cacao content. The higher the cacao content, the more nutrients and less sugar in your bar.
  4. Use this season to crack open your cookbooks! Although the holidays are the season for giving, partying, and socializing with friends and colleagues, take some time out this season to dive into the creature comforts of cooking at home. Pot roasts, stews, soups, and baking (using whole grain flours, of course!) are perfect for this time of year and you can control what goes into it, keeping it as healthy as you'd like.

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