Cartoon image boy eating apple; soda, candy, pie and water hovering in air

Healthy Eating During the Holidays

Thanksgiving, Christmas and Hanukkah are around the corner
Author: Heather Boerner and January W. Payne

Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas and Hanukkah. They’re just around the corner, and that means tasty treats and special meals that make your mouth water. But how do you resist the urge to overdo it? Here are six tips to keep the Halloween candy under control, skip the seconds on stuffing and pie at Thanksgiving, and enjoy the melt-in-your-mouth chocolate at Christmas and Hanukkah without going overboard:

Snack before dinner. Ask your mom and dad to buy healthy snacks like fruit, whole grain crackers and raw veggies to snack on before a big meal. They’ll fill up your belly so you won’t eat too much at dinnertime.

Think first. Help your parents make yummy snacks that go easy on the sugar, salt and fat. Dip your favorite fruit in your favorite flavor of low-fat yogurt, or try hearty salsa with multi-grain chips.

Be creative. Make your drinks healthier by using skim milk in your hot cocoa, skipping soda and floating a lemon or lime slice in your water or adding a little fruit juice to seltzer for that fizzy taste. Help your mom wash the fruit, then  make some baked apples or pears for dessert, and see what other creative ways you can add the yum to your meals.

Eat right at parties. Look for fruits and veggies with healthy dips at holiday parties, and eat those instead of loading up on candy and cookies. Who says you can’t have fun while eating healthy foods?

Take small portions. It’s OK to eat the sweet stuff, like cookies, peanut brittle, pie and fudge—but try taking a small piece and eating it slowly. That way it lasts longer, and you’ll notice how good each bite tastes.

Just say no. Remember: It’s not rude to refuse food. If you’re not hungry, say so, but be polite!

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