Holiday Party Survival Guide

by | Updated: October 13th, 2020 | Read time: 2 minutes

Break out the elastic waistbands – the holidays have arrived!

If you don’t want to be one of the millions who will gain weight between Thanksgiving and New Year’s, take heed of these helpful tips for surviving the barrage of parties, buffets and sweet temptations that await you this holiday season:


  • Show up starving. Think you should forgo food the day of the party? Think again! Before you head out to a holiday party, eat a healthy snack. Even nibbling on something small like popcorn or carrots and hummus can keep you from gorging on unhealthy foods later.
  • Eat just to be polite. Yes, it’s Aunt Shirley’s special recipe. And although she claims to have baked this over-the-top pecan pie just for you, there’s no reason to let guilt get in the way of your healthy eating plans.
  • Consume your calories in a cup. Eggnog, Irish coffee, sugary cider – it’s easy to down a drink or two without even realizing you’ve ingested a large number of calories. Instead, sip coconut water or a small amount of red wine.


  • Go small. For your plate, that is. A smaller plate will keep you from piling on unnecessary calories – and it may also keep you from going back for seconds. If a big plate is your only option, be sure to fill most of it with fruits and vegetables, leaving little room for fattening snacks or meats.
  • Indulge – in moderation. I’m a big believer in life’s little indulgences – like a slice of chocolate cake to celebrate a special occasion. Whether you love cheese, cookies or pumpkin pie, let yourself enjoy a small amount – guilt free! It will actually help you stay on track
  • BYOT – Bring your own treats. Have a favorite healthy dish? Share it with your friends and family! Or, you can do what I do – make healthy substitutions to a classic holiday recipe and see if anyone notices. My favorite: pumpkin pie with low-fat graham cracker crust, stevia and almond milk.