Planning Saves Calories and Dollars

November 17, 2011 | Peggy Martin

Planning Saves Calories and Dollars

Continuous tiny tastes of food throughout the coming days do not make a difference in the short run, but little bits from now through the New Year can result in unwelcome weight gains.

Alice Henneman from the University of Nebraska has a short video, Tiny Tastes Can Total Big Calories over the Winter Holidays, that show how bites can add up to excess pounds.

During the holiday season I find it hard to resist sampling the food I am preparing or baking.  Plus, there are more special social occasions with great food.

I think being mindful of the problem is a great first step.  Here are a few strategies I have used to curb my tendency for taking many tiny tastes:

  • Chew gum when cooking or baking.
  • Volunteer to take fruit and vegetable trays to family dinners and parties to ensure that I have something healthy to snack on.
  • Be the last in the food line, taking a plate of food, eating it, and moving out of reach from the buffet table.
  • Select one favorite holiday treat to take to all the events I plan to attend, spend one day making and then freezing them.  Then I stay out of the kitchen and spend time decorating or making non-food presents.
  • Tell myself that food tasting in public is not safe.
  • Commit to writing every bite down so I can see what I have consumed.

Buying gifts for the holidays can also get out of control: buying presents here and there, trying to balance the amounts you have spent for each person and then buying more to even things out.  For me, developing a strategy for buying presents includes, taking time to make a gift list, budget for each gift, and brainstorm ideas before you go to the store.

I would love to hear your strategies for saving calories or dollars this holiday season.

Peggy Martin

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