happy woman holding a christmas gift scale with christmas tree in background

Believe it or not, the average person in the U.S. will eat an average of 5,750 calories at a hefty holiday dinner, which is more than 5,000 calories over our daily limit and amounts to about 1.6 pounds of fat.

After one week of this kind of feasting, we could gain over 11 pounds of fat!

But if you’re trying to watch your weight and eat healthier this holiday season, it’s easy to feel stressed about all of the pressure we get from outside (“Didn’t you like my homemade pie?”) and from inside (“Why did I eat three portions of stuffing with extra gravy!?”).

After all the effort we put into losing weight, the last thing we want to do is to completely sabotage our goals.

Fortunately, there are healthier ways to approach holiday eating, and completely depriving ourselves of all of the so-called “bad stuff” is not the answer.


  • 3 Almased® Protein Powder 17.6 Oz
  • 1 Downloadable Food List PDF – FREE!
  • 1 Almased® Measuring Spoon – FREE!

Before we try some of those helpful hints for the holidays, we can consider doing a limited fast to reduce our calorie consumption — along with three high-protein shakes per day — for three days before each of our big family get-togethers.

In this way, we start ahead of the curve (literally) and not behind the eight-ball.

plate of oatmeal with cinnamon on wooden table decorated with cinnamon sticks

Below are 7 tips for mindfully navigating the holiday dinner and dessert tables!

1. Don’t arrive starving!

This is the same principle as grocery shopping while hungry. Some people hold back their appetite in anticipation of loading up on the party fare. The backlash from this kind of restriction is more likely to result in overeating.

Replace two meals with a high-protein shake, like Almased®, during the day, to feel better about overindulging at dinner. Plus, the shakes may help you stave off some of those hunger pangs.

2. Fill your plate wisely

At holiday dinners, first fill your plate with plenty of veggies, green salads and fruit. Add a protein entrée of meat, seafood or plant-based protein, like tofu. Then add whole grains or starches. Go lightly on casseroles and high-fat gravies or sauces.

3. Stop eating when you’re 80 percent full

Eat a small-to-moderate meal while taking mental note of your fullness level. Before a second pass at the buffet or diving right into dessert, wait about 10 minutes after eating.

This gives hunger signals time to realize that you’ve eaten and that you may be full. This approach can also assist with portion control.

Again, having a high-protein shake before dinner can go a long way to helping with this.

family reunited having dinner at christmas

4. Bulk up on fiber

Fiber is powerfully healthy in itself for many reasons. For one, it slows the absorption of sugar, supporting healthy blood sugar levels, keeping your appetite satisfied longer.

5. Up-size variety, down-size portions

Sometimes you’ll find yourself drooling at the sight of a lavish spread. When you get that “I want it all” feeling, follow your bliss – but bite by bite. 

Wanting a piece of cake, pie or gingerbread? Have them all, but aim for just a spoonful or two of each. By the end of the party, you’ll leave with that fabulous "I've had it all" feeling.

Enjoy your pumpkin pie! But if you only eat the filling and leave the crust behind, you’ll save about 173 calories and 11.7 grams of fat!

6. Eat, drink less, and be merry?

For weight loss, you don’t want to slow down your metabolism, yet that is exactly what alcohol does.

If you still choose to drink, avoid the eggnogs, cream drinks, and any beverage made with extra carbohydrates. Sip your beverages slowly, giving your body more time to metabolize it.

happy couple having coffee in the street

7. Take a walk

Go for a brisk 30-minute walk immediately after dinner. This naturally boosts metabolism and helps us with our overall weight loss goals.

Trying some of those tips above should allow us to press pause on our weight worries, this holiday-time.

After each of these food-fests, it’s a good time for us to jump back on the optimal health wagon! We’ll want to restart our diet at our very next meal or on the next day, so our healthy eating and weight-loss goals are not compromised.

Fortunately, making room on your menu for high-quality nutrition, including Almased®, can help us stay healthy this season and not get dragged off by those party-hardy reindeer!


  • 3 Almased® Protein Powder 17.6 Oz
  • 1 Downloadable Food List PDF – FREE!
  • 1 Almased® Measuring Spoon – FREE!