Debbie J., MS, RD contributed this article –
With summer swiftly approaching, it’s time to put in to perspective where those extra indulgences fit in. Beach barbecues and pool parties are fun, but can put your beach body in jeopardy. Some nachos here, a few potato skins there, a beer here, one margarita there…and before you know it, you’ll be searching for a sun shirt to cover your swimsuit.
Be realistic with yourself as to how you celebrate with food and drink. What’s your style?
Some folks are grazers. They nab a bite of every appetizer on the party table throughout the entire event. Other people are pure drinkers, preferring a glass in their hand, and at their lips, at all times. Some fill up their plates with large servings, and go back for seconds. If you’re one of the first two, multiple little refills make it difficult to assess how much you’ve had by the end of the night. Yet, if you’re a member of the last group, gratuitous portioning can get out of control.
To avoid this, create a plan ahead of time.
- Instead of scheduling extra exercise the day after, it might be better to work out more ahead of time to assure you’ll stay in calorie balance.
- Don’t arrive at the event hungry, but have a big glass of water and an apple to fill you up before you go.
- The key might be in what you wear. Those who wear snug clothes around the waist may feel the effects of high volume sooner and curb further intake of food and drink.
- Have a limit set in stone, such as “I’ll have no more than 3 drinks tonight,” or “I’ll fill my appetizer plate only twice.”
- To be assured of healthy offerings at a potluck, TAKE your favorite salad, light entrée or vegetable dish.
- For dinner parties, consider eating small initial or trial servings before deciding what’s worth a second helping.
- For cocktail parties, alternate between an alcoholic beverage and water with lemon/lime (it looks like a cocktail) to keep your glass full.
- Standing far from and facing away from the buffet or bar can help keep temptation out of sight – and smell.
- Some people manage intake at celebrations by the “Cinderella” method of using a cut-off time to cease intake, such as 2 hours after arriving.
- To keep your mouth busy, chew on a piece of gum or suck on a mint.
- If you feel empty without a plate or cup in your hand, hold onto a napkin.
- The best remedy for idleness is to talk away and shake hands, mingling with other guests.
Who knows maybe you will meet a new friends or even your future husband or wife!
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