Whatever the season, there’s always something to celebrate. And with gatherings of friends and family come food and drinks that may be a little richer and more plentiful than you’d ideally choose.
Luckily, it’s possible to enjoy the food at a party and stick with your wellness goals! Try these ideas before, during, and after any upcoming gathering so you can enjoy yourself without worry.
Before the Party:
- If you’re the host, plan a menu that has plenty of Balanced Plate options. Fresh fruits and veggies, homemade salsa, grilled chicken skewers with peanut sauce, and many more options are delicious and good for you.
- If you’re a guest, contribute a dish that will make it easier to stick to your health goals. Hummus and sliced red peppers, bean salad, or colorful fruit salad are all perfect options.
- Don’t skip meals that day. You’ll make better choices if you go into the party feeling balanced and satisfied. Feeling deprived and hungry sets you up for overeating.
- Have a snack beforehand so you don’t start out starving. Make sure the snack includes some protein and fiber to fill you up. Good choices include a handful of nuts, a small apple and peanut butter, or romaine lettuce and low-sodium deli turkey roll-ups.
At the Party:
- Use the Balanced Plate. Fill your dish with 50% non-starchy veggies, 25% whole grain carbs, and 25% protein.
- If the food is served buffet-style, stick with one plate of food. Find your favorite healthy foods and savor each tasty bite.
- Sit away from the food so you’re less likely to eat mindlessly.
- Start with a salad or broth-based soup. They take the edge off your hunger. They can also fill you up on fewer calories. You’ll even get an extra serving of veggies!
- Limit your alcohol to no more than one drink for women, two drinks for men. If you have more than one, drink a glass of water in between. This will save calories and help you keep a clear head so you can choose healthy foods over treats.
- It’s not all about food. Once you’ve eaten, catch up with friends and enjoy yourself!
- If the party has a dance floor, get moving! This counts as exercise just as much as going to the gym does.
After the Party:
- If you’re hosting, send guests home with leftovers so you’re not stuck with too much food.
- Get right back to your routine the next day. Exercising more or eating less than you normally would set you up for an unhealthy cycle of extremes. In the long run, it doesn’t work.
- If you feel tired the next day, don’t eat more to give yourself energy. Drink plenty of water and take a refreshing walk outside instead.
- Schedule a call with your Livongo coach to help you get back on track!
Parties are no reason to put your progress on the back burner. Livongo is here to help you celebrate health along with birthdays, holidays, weddings, and other special occasions.