How to Eat Healthy at ANY Buffet!

The holiday season is a wonderful time to connect with friends and family, and these celebrations are usually overflowing with tasty and delicious food. To maintain your health and fitness goals, we’ve got some great strategies for you to use at holiday parties and events.

Whenever possible, avoid “THE BUFFET” and opt for an “a la carte” meal when planning your holiday parties. You’re more likely to make smarter food choices this way. If you do attend buffets, take advantage of our top ten tips for smarter buffet eating.

  • Avoid over eating at the buffet by proactively eating a small meal before leaving home! Fuel up on high quality sources of protein, like some nuts or a smoothie. These proteins will keep your hunger in check.
  • Look at all of the food options before filling your plate! Take an extra minute to shop the buffet. Knowing all of your options ahead of time will cause you to make better choices!
  • Fill your plate with veggies first. It’s nearly impossible to over eat vegetables, so you can feel good about filling your plate with them!
  • Stick to whole foods. Many buffets offer a variety of processed foods and/or simple carbohydrates (pastas, potatoes, fried food) as well as whole foods (vegetables, salads, freshly prepared items). The more whole foods you have on your plate, the better!
  • Pay attention to portion sizes. You can always go back and eat more if you feel hungry, but go in with the mentality of less is more. You probably need a lot less food than you think. And you’ll feel better without a “food coma” after an extra large meal.
  • Eat your food slowly, and enjoy it! Make eating your food a whole experience, and not just about the food. You’ll end up eating less.
  • Sit far away from the buffet! Out of site, out of mind.
  • Keep a log of your food intake, which can be done in your phone through apps like My Fitness Pal, or in a paper note pad. When possible, log your food intake before eating. This will help you see the data of how much food/calories you are about to consume, and will help you make better eating choices.
  • Make post-buffet workout plans! When you know you’re working out later, you’ll make smarter food choices.
  • Practice mindfulness. Take a few deep breaths before eating, connect with your body and build a level of care for yourself. The more connected you are with your body and your goals, the easier it will be to say no to food that doesn’t serve you.

We are open during the Holiday Season to support your goals and look forward to a Healthy, Fit and Strong 2016!

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