For the past month, you’ve been surrounded by indulgent appetizers, festive cocktails and sweet treats — and the fun isn’t over yet! The abundance of family gatherings and holiday parties, coupled with the stress of the season, makes it easy to derail all the hard work you’ve invested in staying healthy. Steal these stay-on-track tactics from a registered dietitian, so you can coast through the chaos with ease.
- Moderation, not deprivation
Kim McDevitt, MPH RD has a motto when it comes to food: take a little of everything and not too much of anything. If you let yourself have a taste of all the foods that catch your eye, you’ll satisfy cravings without compromising your waistline. Or, you can re-make some of your holiday favorites to be lower in calories, sugar and fat, so you’re guaranteed a few good-for-you treats (check out the chocolate bark recipe below).
- Be in the moment
Remember that food and drink is only half of the party. Be mindful of the company you’re surrounded by and immerse yourself in conversation with others. When your focus is on catching up with friends and loved ones, you’re less tempted by food. Make it even easier by putting distance between yourself and the buffet table.
- Plan ahead
If you know you’re headed to a holiday party that evening, stack the rest of your day with clean eating. Eat sensibly by choosing nutrient-dense, plant-based proteins, vegetables, whole grains and quality fats. Instead of heading to the party ravenous, drink a low-glycemic smoothie to keep you satisfied. Add Vega One to your favorite smoothie recipe, and enjoy 20 grams of premium plant-based protein, 6 servings of greens and 50% the Daily Value of vitamins and minerals – all from real, whole, non-GMO foods.
In the event you overindulgence, remember that one or two parties are not going to spoil your entire year-worth of efforts. If you do happen to reach for one too many cocktails or appetizers, wake up the next day and default to your normal routine. You’ll be back to yourself in no time!
White Chocolate Peppermint Maca Bark
Maca chocolate layer
3 Vega Maca Chocolate bars
3 organic peppermint candies or 1 organic candy cane
White chocolate layer
4-inch piece cocoa butter
2 Tbsp. macadamia, coconut or cashew butter (or a blend)
½ tsp. organic vanilla extract
Pinch of sea salt
- Line a 7” x 9” baking pan with wax paper.
- Crush the peppermints into pieces. This is easiest to do by putting the peppermints in a plastic bag and gently tapping with a hammer or the back of a spoon.
- Roughly chop cocoa butter and set aside 1/3 of chopped butter. In a double boiler or microwave, melt the remaining 2/3. Once melted, remove from heat and stir in the reserved 1/3, continuing to stir until completely melted.
- Add macadamia butter, vanilla and salt. Stir until completely combined.
- Spread ¾ of white chocolate mix onto prepared wax paper. Place pan in refrigerator to harden.
- Roughly chop the 3 Vega Maca Chocolate bars and set aside 1/3 of chopped bars. In a double boiler or microwave, melt remaining 2/3 bars. Once melted, remove from heat and stir in the reserved 1/3, continuing to stir until completely melted.
- Pour melted chocolate bars over the hardened white chocolate layer. Spread chocolate to cover the white layer completely. Return to fridge to set.
- Once the maca chocolate layer has hardened, pour remaining white chocolate mix on top and spread evenly. Note: the white chocolate may need to be quickly reheated.
- Sprinkle chopped peppermints on top. Gently press to make sure they are “glued” in place.
- Move pan to the freezer until bark is solid.
- Remove from freezer and break bark into pieces. Enjoy!
About the Author
Kim McDevitt, MPH, RD
As a registered dietitian and Regional Educator with Vega, Kim has a passion for teaching the power of nutrient-dense, plant-based foods. She helps her audiences to understand health in an approachable way — with plenty of laughter and stories. As a runner, with advanced degrees in both nutrition science and public health, Kim loves to inspire others through her creative recipes, personal experience, and engaging training events.