Overeating is synonymous with the holidays. At 12:01am on November 1st we are already creating the plan of attack for the upcoming food apocalypse. We dig into the holiday clothes aka winter wear to accommodate expanding bellies, portion control goes out the window as we give ourselves permission to eat 6 slices of pie and carb overload sets in because bread goes with everything. And don't even get me started on morning protein shakes because left over’s taste amazing at 7am. But it's all in the name of family and food and we know Dec. 31st is right around the corner to create our healthy eating resolutions. It's all a vicious cycle. Sometimes I wish the holidays were a little spread out because it's a full two months of cornucopia. But with proper planning you should still be able to have your cake and eat it too without going up a pant size.
We check in with well known celebrity chefs to find out how they eat during the holidays and what they recommend for healthy eating in between meals.
Chef Art Smith, Celebrity Chef
Former chef for Governor Jeb Bush and personal chef to Oprah Winfrey
It's the holidays, enjoy your holiday meal but why not eat it at noon, and go for a long walk after. Don't eat heavy holiday meals at night. I also always have a lot of vegetable based sides. Have turkey, stuffing but have a lot of vegetables. Drink a lot of water. And limit wine to 1 glass. Don't drink your calories.
I love a relish tray, lots of fresh cut veggies, and pickles. Pickles with low sodium and low sugar are great. Make yourself a little dip with Greek yogurt. My mother would make pimento cheese spread with celery during the holiday meal.
I think its possible yes; just don't make breakfast, lunch and dinner a holiday meal. Make it only one meal on that day. I love a leftover but make it small and eat it for lunch not dinner. Keep dinner very light.
Chef Dana Herbert, Celebrity Pastry Chef
Owner of Desserts by Dana
TLC's The Next Great Baker
Pace yourself. You don't have to eat every single thing at one sitting. Have some for lunch and then a little for dinner and then some the next day. I know its hard when grand mom and your mom can throw down in the kitchen but this is a simple way to get all of what you want over time.
My go to snack for staying healthy is celery sticks with hot sauce and fat free blue cheese or ranch dressing. It helps fill you up but it's low in fat and carbs so it's easier for the body to burn it off.
It is possible to eat healthier over the holidays. Use things less in fat to start. Using fat free sour cream and yogurts are great ways to reduce calories and fat while still keeping things creamy. Using herbs in place of a lot of salty spices are another way to increase flavor in a healthy way.
Chef Brian Duffy, Celebrity Chef
Food Network & Spike TV's Bar Rescue
I go to the gym as much as possible to work off the calories that I know I'm going to be eating. I also try to limit my intake of all of the really bad foods. I'm not saying that I don't eat them but I do have a bigger first course of the salad or the veggies so I fill up a bit more.
I love grilled chicken. I know it's not really a snack, but it's a good protein. I love to dip grilled chicken in stuff; hot sauce, some light ranch or even a vinegar based dressing. Just remember that there are roughly 120 calories in each ounce so be careful.
Other than chicken, I go for nuts. I love almonds that are roasted not salted. I like to make my own seasoning with spices or sea salt & I love fresh cracked pepper. Want to hear something funny? I love TJ Maxx, Marshalls and Homegoods for spices. They have a great selection of salts & spices and a lot of times they are in a grinder, which means a fresher bolder flavor.
I do think its possible to eat healthy but we have sooo many choices that are in front of us. Simple things all in moderation. I mean, ask yourself, do you need a full size piece of every dessert or a few small pieces so that you can actually taste them?
If you want a healthier version of some of this stuff then don't deep-fry the turducken. How about doing a caramelized onion on top of the green bean casserole that has fresh sautéed mushrooms and a light sour cream sauce.
Everything in moderation!