Healthy Holidays: 5 Ways to Curb Your Cravings


No one likes to party more than The Nutrition Twins—Lyssie Lakatos, RD, and Tammy Lakatos Shames, RD. Thats why we turned to them for these smart ways to avoid overeating while celebrating.

Never leave home hungry. That old rule really does help reduce grazing overload, especially if you load up on something yummy and filling preparty. Our pick: heart-healthy oatmeal. A 100-calorie packet will warm your tummy, release some serotonin to help you relax, and fill you up enough to help you make good eating decisions when youre about to face the buffet.

Ditch the craving. Wrap a few gifts or trim the tree to take your mind off your tummy. Your hunger pangs should subside in about 10 minutes. If they dont, make some cinnamon-popcorn strings for the tree and help yourself to a few kernels while you decorate. It will take quite a while for the calories to add up (six cups of air-popped popcorn is 186 calories).

Be the life of the party. Collect new friends instead of appetizers. Fill your small plate once, nibble a little, and mingle.

Bring a low-cal treat. Surprise the hostess with a sugar-free, lime-and-strawberry Jell-O mold topped with fat-free whipped cream; a half-cup serving is less than 20 calories.

Substitute smartly. Want to curb a chocolate craving? Dip strawberries in sugar-free chocolate. Need to satisfy your urge for high-cal pumpkin pie? Add a few packets of Splenda to a half-cup of canned pumpkin; it delivers just 40 calories—but 300 percent of your daily vitamin A and 3.6 grams of fiber. For a little crunch, spread some on a graham cracker.