Easter is almost upon us!  Now it’s time to celebrate and enjoy holiday festivities while following a few simple steps to help you stay on track.

SINGLE SERVE PORTIONS:  We all love holiday classics like sweet potato or green bean casserole. Enjoy them, but keep your portions in check. Prepare single serving portions in small ramekins or muffin tins. Use smaller plates and serving utensils for the main course and pour drinks into tall skinny glasses.  The trick is to eat larger portions of healthy foods balanced with smaller portions of more indulgent family classics.  You might not be the only one who appreciates these moves!

BUILD A PLATE WITH A PLAN:  Stick with the 80/20 rule!  Focus your attention on protein and veggies. This is a great time of year to experiment with some new side salads using seasonal fruits and veggies to have along with your proteins. Stick to single servings or samples of the starchy foods (see Tip #1) to stay on track and eliminate that post-meal food coma.  When you set pre-determined limits before the event and have a cutoff number in mind, it makes it much easier to stick to the plan.

WATER:  As always, water is important — but especially on a holiday.  Hit your goal of half your body weight in ounce, up to around 70oz, to not only stay hydrated, but also to help you digest foods you have not eaten in a while.  Try serving water infused with fresh fruit or herbs for a beautiful, inexpensive and healthy drink for everyone to enjoy!

EAT BEFORE:  Don’t wait to eat. With a busy day, full of family and preparations, it’s easy to forget to eat — or easy to eat everything along the way. Be proactive. Start your day with some protein like a veggie omelette. Then maybe add a smoothie, fruit snack or a salad with plenty of raw veggies in early afternoon. You will be less hungry when you hit the table and less likely to fill up on appetizers.

SWAP IT OUT:  If you have a hard time limiting your portions on mashed potatoes, find a delicious and fiber-rich alternative like cauliflower. Add in garlic, a little skim milk, salt and pepper.

PICK YOUR POISON:  Between the alcohol and desserts there is an abundance of sugar, so pick your indulgence. A piece of cake, pie or a cocktail. After your drink make yourself a mock-tail so you still feel like you are participating. Check out our Cranberry Apple Cider Mocktail.

STAY ACTIVE:  Start your day with some exercise or encourage a family walk before or after your feast. You can even be part of the clean-up crew! Washing dishes and moving around the kitchen will help you to avoid the couch. Your loved ones will be grateful as well.

CHEW FOOD SLOWLY:  Be sure to savor your food.  Don't race through the meal.  It takes about 20 minutes for your brain to receive the signal that you are full and to stop eating.  Pace yourself and listen to your body.  It will tell you when it's full and satisfied.

SHARING IS CARING:  If you host a gathering, package up tempting leftovers and send them home with your guests.  If you're the guest, bring your favorite betr dish to have a healthy alternative to fall back on.  Not only is this a good way to stay on track, but ALSO show others that eating clean can be easy and delicious.

RELAX:  Never feel guilty or down on yourself for enjoying foods during a holiday.  Don't let a slip become a fall.  The best thing you can do is focus on small changes that will empower you to have a positive, powerful attitude when it comes to your goals.  

Let life happen, enjoy time spent with loved ones, and get right back to your betr healthy lifestyle the next day!

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