Be Wise and Smart with Choices and Timings to Manage your Diet during the Festive Season

During a festival period or a family wedding occasion or a holiday, managing your food is the biggest challenge because all these situations are not about one meal out, but about 3-4 days of heavy party food and meals. The first step is to decide whether you are on a weight reduction programme or are just maintaining your weight.

If you are already working hard and reducing steadily, my advice would be to have a mind-set that you have already tasted all these goodies earlier, year after year on similar occasions and will continue to see the same food for all the years to come. This one time if you donít indulge and just keep those blinkers on, look ahead and tell yourself that you can pass this time, itís the best treat you can give to yourself and also boost your self-control.

The second way is to say that you want to enjoy just on 1 or 2 occasions out of 3-4 days of celebration or holiday and to do this smartly here are a few tips.

  1. Timing Ė Please note that all kinds of fat take 6-8 hours to get digested and therefore it is wiser to indulge in a lunch meal than in a dinner meal. If you have a rich meal at lunch around 1 or 2 pm, there is easily 6-8 hours to use up a lot of those extra calories. However if you eat heavily at 8 or 9pm then the digested calories are coming into your blood at 2 or 3am and your body feels there is no way to burn this as you are sleeping. Those calories get converted to fat and stored while you sleep. Similarly if you are longing to taste a holige/obbattu or payasam/pudding in your home, then try to taste it in the day time and not late at night. Also many on holidays tend to eat a heavy breakfast, then skip lunch and end up eating a heavy dinner. We recommend that you eat a good breakfast and good lunch and taste the specialties and delicacies of that place during the day and have a light and strict dinner at night.

  2. Control Quality Ė When you look at a table full of goodies or a buffet spread donít just try to taste everything. Be choosy and spend your calories wisely. Choose one or two items you like very much and enjoy what you have chosen. Donít put your hand into every dish you see.

  3. Control Quantity Ė Ask yourself are you eating to enjoy the taste of some food or are you eating to binge and comfort yourself. When you are eating for the taste you donít need to overeat till you feel sick and uncomfortable. So if you have decided to enjoy a particular meal and you like the main course served then eat one or two moderate servings of the main course and just a spoon or two of dessert for taste. If you want to indulge in the dessert then do one serving of main course and one moderate servings of dessert.

One thing you must know, never over eat or indulge in both lunch and dinner in one day and do not over eat on two consecutive days, that is, indulge on a daily basis. You can gain 2-3 kgs in just one week of over eating and a whole month of hard work to lose 2-3kgs can be ruined in just a few days.

Last but not the least is to keep your walks going even through the festivity and holiday period. Even if you cannot make it in the morning after a late night, try to squeeze in 25-30 minutesí walk in the evening or even at night. Water too is a must. Itís the cold season and you may not feel thirsty, but 2.5-3 liters is a must every day, all year round.

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