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Party Without Gaining Weight During the Holidays

Now that I’ve had a successful weight loss and kept it off for close to five years, I find that my life has changed. I love exercise, cooking (and eating) veggies more than once a day, and drink more water than I ever imagined. I have more energy and am much happier.

One thing hasn’t changed, though – I still dread holiday parties. Being surrounded by all the yummy foods, mixed drinks and amazing sweet treats, combined with an almost total lack of willpower can often be a recipe for disaster. A friend of mine recently decided that her annual Christmas party was going to have a Mexican theme, and when I first heard about it, I decided I wouldn’t attend. After all, Mexican food can be terrible for the waist, full of fat and calories, and one night of indulging could mean I need hours of work in the gym for a week or more. There’s no way that I could go to her Mexican Christmas party and still stay on task- or so I thought. I was bummed because this party was sure to be a lot of fun, with many of my friends present.

Upon reflection, though, I decided that I really did want to attend. I wasn’t going to be content to sit in the living room, away from the food and the fun, and I certainly wasn’t going to be eating just celery sticks and baby carrots. I wanted to be part of the party, having a good time. My diet wasn’t going to keep me from having fun. I decided to look through our recipe archives here on DietsInReview and found some great Mexican recipes that would fit in with my diet, relieve some stress for the hostess, and be better for everyone involved. Cheesy Enchiladas, Mexican Casserole, and Baked Chimichangas were all great additions to her offerings, and knowing that there were healthier options on the table meant that I could attend the party, see my friends, help the hostess and enjoy myself.

The holiday season doesn’t have to mean sitting in the kitchen alone with celery stalks and water, or staying home and avoiding the fun. With a little advance planning and research, you can have your fun and avoid the dreaded holiday weight gain!

December 8th, 2010

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