Stay Lean through the Holidays

skinny gal waist measureStay Lean through the Holidays with 50-Calorie Bites

With all the parties and munching, people put on weight during the holidays. I have a few tricks to keep my noshing down but still get to have tastes of my favorite foods. I grew up on ham, sparking apple cider, chex-mix, macaroni and cheese and all the home-y stuff my mom would make and serve at the holidays. Not to mention all the pies, cakes, candy and cookies!

Some of my tricks: Eat before an event – something small and healthy (protein shake, nutrition bar, handful of nuts, slice of chicken), and drink a glass of water. Then, I am not starving when I hit the door of the party.

Here is a new trick I just got from a great article in the December 2013 AARP Bulletin. Plan around 50 calorie bites! Of course, this means I can no longer compete with my family to drink the most Sparkling Cider at one sitting – my record: a 25.4 oz bottle in 10 minutes — or put down several ham slices with cheese, but at least I don’t have to lose all my favorite foods entirely. Here is the list and, if you keep it in mind, it may help you to Stay Lean through the Holidays.

The guideline is women can choose 18 of these servings for 900 calories, which would be about half their daily recommended caloric intake, and men can choose 22 for 1,100 calories. That way if you want three pieces of pumpkin pie, you can have it, but that means cutting-back somewhere else…..Or, you can just eat all you want for a few days and then do a Fast or Cleanse for a few after, beginning in the New Year. I will post about different types of safe fasts and cleanses in my next blog, sometime after the New Year, probably!

50-Calorie Holiday Bites – credit: AARP Bulletin, December, 2013

Appetizers

• Pigs in a blanket, appetizer-size: 1
chex mix
 • Chex Mix: 1/5 cup

• Spinach dp: 1-1/2 tablespoons

Dinner Dishes
Ham slices
 • Ham, canned: 1 medium slice

• Mashed potatoes: ¼ cup

• Turkey with skin: 1 medium slice

• Prime rib: 1 thin slice

• Stuffing: 1/8 cup

• Green bean casserole: ¼ cup

• Candied sweet potatoes: 1/6 cup

• Macaroni and cheese: 1/10 cup

• Gravy: 3 tablespoons

• Cranberry sauce: 1/8 cup

Beverages

• Eggnog, non-alcoolic: ¼ cup

• Eggnog, alcoholic: 1/8 cup

• Wine: 2 fluid oz.

• Beer: 4 fluid oz.
Apple cider
 • Apple cider: 3 fluid oz.

Desserts
pie slice
 • Pumpkin pie: 1/6 of a slice

• Apple pie: 1/8 of a slice

• Pecan pie: 1/10 of a slice

• Sweet potato pie: 1/6 of a slice

• Fruitcake: 1/6 of a slice

• Jello: 1/3 cup

So, now that you know these measurements, you can estimate the calories for each of your choices. Don’t feel too bad if the 50-calorie portions just don’t cut it. I have to agree! My choice, choose my three top favorites, eat as much of these foods/drinks as I want and cut-back elsewhere. And if I just can’t resist, there is always the Cleanse solution! Or, a bike-ride, run or a sauna…….

HAPPY NEW YEAR, EVERYONE!

What a Hangover is Doing to Your Body

Gal with hangover 2A dear friend loves to party. She is just 27, and spends her free time at bars with buds. Her pictures are full of drinking and laughing. Unfortunately, her body is not so happy, inside.
Here is what is happening to your body on a Hangover, per Laura Bell in WomensHealth Magazine — Maybe it is not worth it????

Head: Your head is aching because you are dehydrated – because lots of alcohol upsets the production of vasopressin, a hormone that controls fluid balance – which is also why you will spend the night running to the restroom.

My suggestion: Drink a glass of water a half-hour before going to the event, then drink a glass of water between the drinks and drink water before you go to bed – Dilute the alcohol level and get it out of your body faster. Try to eat something as well – to help process the alcohol. You can take an anti-inflammatory such as ibuprofen, but no acetaminophen. Find out why next. If you drank darker hard liquors, and most beers and dark wines, there were more congeners, chemicals that may exacerbate the hangover. Plus, if you were smoking it will increase the pain.

Liver – Your poor liver has to spend all the time processing the alcohol, which is actually poisoning your body, so it is not processing food. It can only process and detox one drink per hour, so pace yourself! Do not add acetaminophen the next day as the liver is worn-out, drink water and take a liver-support system, with milk-thistle and alpha-lipoic acid. I take one tablet with every meal as my liver needs the support, and I rarely drink even wine.
(Ask me what nutrition product company I am using – 600 Olympians are also using it……The liver support also helps you maintain your weight…..)

Stomach – If you have a spiked drink of any kind, it will irritate your stomach and you might not be able to tolerate food. Again, drink water and let your stomach calm down. If you are nauseous, you are actually in alcohol-withdrawal . You could also be shaking, sweaty or feeling anxious. If you can do it, put a healthy, vegan protein smoothie with good herbs in your stomach. If you can’t, sip water and wait it out. All the home-remedies will not really change the chemical issues you are dealing with, unfortunately. You just have to let your body purge. You could try a sauna if you keep hydrated. Sweating out the poison is good!

Energy Level – Alcohol disturbs the brain’s normal sleep cycles, so any sleep you got was probably not very restorative. You probably feel groggy and muddle-headed. Put off decision-making until you feel better. Take a nap and meditate on how you can better handle the next party to not lose the next day! Once you have lost the nausea and headache, eat, rest and then do some light exercise — walk outside in the fresh air. This too shall pass…..

AND ON THAT NOTE — HAPPY NEW YEAR, EVERYONE!