Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Try Trading This For That...

To satisfy a sweet tooth, trade that slice of hot apple pie for a steamy skim latte dusted with apple-pie spice. Calorie savings: 200

Stave off winter’s chill with a third of the calories—and 4 times more filling fiber—by replacing your standby cup of creamy New England clam chowder with hearty minestrone. Calorie savings: 180

For a satisfying on-the-go breakfast, grab a bowl of piping hot oatmeal with almonds instead of a sausage, egg, and cheese on a bagel. Calorie savings: 335

4 Easy Ways to Keep Your Waistline in Check Over The Holidays

  1. Pencil in physical activity. Treat exercise as you would any other important event—a party, a business meeting, a date—and write it on your calendar. And this doesn’t mean you need to make a trip to the gym. If you’ve nixed the trainer and gym membership to save your pennies, go outside and walk or run for 20 to 30 minutes; before your morning shower is a great time to do this. Think about what you want to wear, eat, and accomplish that day. You’ll start your days with a renewed sense of purpose and empowerment that will help keep you on track.
  2. Plan your meals ahead. Doing so is a great want to control cost and calories. Do you have leftovers from a healthy dinner you made? Bring them for lunch. Or grab staples like yogurt, oatmeal, cottage cheese, and fresh fruit from your fridge and pantry and bring them to work for breakfast and a snack. Not only will you eat healthier and save money, but you’ll feel prepared to turn down office fare like donuts and bagels at breakfast, the never-ending spread of mystery sandwiches for lunch, and those ubiquitous holidays gifts of chocolate, cookies, and cupcakes that seems to arrive at the same time daily. And if the 1:00 lunch meeting is absolutely unavoidable, peruse the restaurant’s menu ahead of time and arrive knowing what you want to order.
  3. Don’t arrive hungry… to holiday dinners and parties, that is. Many people forgo food before an event to save up calories, but being ravenous upon arrival makes it that much easier to binge and that much harder to select healthier options in the face of temptation. And we’re all familiar with the allure of those mini quiches, tuna tartars, bite-size burgers, bacon-wrapped scallops… Need I go on? Make it a point to have a healthy (and satisfying) snack before heading to the bar or party. My favorites include a Luna or Gnu bar, or two fiber-rich crackers with a wedge of Laughing Cow Light cheese. And don’t forget: Ladies, wear something fitted like a little black dress and gentlemen, buckle your belts one notch tighter—the more aware you are of your body, the less you’ll eat.
  4. Celebrate with limits. It’s easy to get swept up in the excitement of the holidays, but set boundaries for yourself when it comes to the never-ending supply of canap├ęs and alcohol. For each hors d’oeuvres you grab, take a napkin and aim not to exceed four. As for alcohol, I am not about to advise you abstain entirely. That’s simply not realistic. However, make it your modus operandi to alternate your elixir of choice with a glass of water or seltzer with a lime. Not only will you save calories (and money if it’s not an open bar), but you’ll also maintain control over what you eat.