Tips for Navigating the Holidays

Navigating the Holidays a Healthier Way: Your 3-Step “Pre-party” Plan

As you learned in the first tip of our “Navigating the Holidays” series, a balanced eating attitude and visualization are two strategies to keep you on track this season. In addition, there are steps you can take both before and during your next holiday gathering to further your success at making healthier choices.

Your “3-Step” Pre-party plan

Holiday weight gain happens when you eat more calories than you burn off. It’s that simple. By following these three steps on the day of your next holiday party, your favorite pair of jeans will zip with ease come January 1st!

Step #1: Don’t skip meals

Starving yourself during the day in an attempt to save all of your calories for the party is a bad idea and almost always leads to overeating. If the gathering is in the evening, instead of skipping breakfast and lunch, eat a bit on the lighter side. For example: At breakfast, eat a hard-boiled egg and a slice of toasted Ezekiel bread smeared with a half tablespoon of Heinen’s fresh ground almond butter. For lunch, munch on a spinach salad filled with nutrient-rich rainbow fruits and veggies. My favorite salad toppings are: chopped tomatoes, broccoli, red peppers, beets, cucumbers, blueberries, black beans and mushrooms! Sprinkle with a tablespoon of Go Raw Sprouted Sunflower Seeds and drizzle with balsamic vinegar and extra virgin olive oil.

Step #2: Hydrate

Drinking plenty of water is one of the most powerful things you can do for your body. And because dehydration can disguise itself as hunger, you’ll be less likely to overeat at the party if you’ve been drinking water all day. I like to follow the “rule of 20”: 20 ounces of water when I first wake up, 20 ounces with lunch and 20 ounces with dinner. Plan on having a drink at the party? You’ll want to hydrate even more! Beer, wine and hard liquor all trigger your kidneys to produce more urine, which causes dehydration. Match each drink with at least eight ounces of water. Remember, a serving of alcohol is the equivalent of 12 ounces of beer, 5 ounces of wine and 1.5 ounces of hard liquor.

Step #3: Bring a healthy dish

Although you can usually spot a veggie tray hidden amongst the mile-long spread of calorie-rich appetizers, holiday parties aren’t typically known for their healthy fare. Why not add some color to that buffet by preparing a healthier appetizer or side dish to share? This way you’ll have a least one smart choice on your plate! For a protein-rich appetizer filled with heart-healthy fat, try the recipe below for “Avocado Deviled Eggs.”

Stay tuned for my next tip in the “Navigating the Holidays” series, where I’ll show you how to maintain self-control at the party while still leaving room for your all-time favorite holiday foods!

Recipe: Avocado Deviled Eggs

Source: Adapted from


  • 12 hard-boiled eggs, peeled
  • ½ medium avocado
  • ½ cup plain Greek yogurt
  • 1 tbsp. fresh lime juice
  • ½ tsp. Himalayan sea salt
  • Cilantro for garnish


  1. Cut eggs in half
  2. Mix yolks with avocado, yogurt, lime and sea salt (if the egg yolks don’t mix up smooth, press the mixture through a fine strainer)
  3. Place in piping bag with large star tip
  4. Pipe into egg whites and garnish with cilantro

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