Quality Living Styles

After the Festivities- Tips for January, 2013

Too Many Celebrations

Many of us have over indulged in rich foods over the last 2 months. For me it has been so since November 2012, with Diwali, Thanksgiving, then Christmas. For others, it may be events like Hannakuh, Kwanzaa, Birthdays and The New Year celebrations.

Food is a huge part of these celebrations and generally we reason that it is only for this special time, so a little does not hurt. But it is not easy to stop at just that little portion. Generally the housewife has to deal with the leftovers. If you are like me, most times, I take a little pinch of this or just try that again. Before you know it, you have consumed a fairly large portion of food that you really did not need.

I also tend to have desserts more regularly, after all there is so much leftover. The end result is always a few extra pounds, rounder bellies and larger waist sizes. Of course the real problem is, if you are diabetic or border line diabetic.

Well, with the New Year in, we should think about eating sensibly again and taking care of ourselves. This month's tips has suggestions for taking a sensible approach to eating. We can all begin with just taking note of what we eat. If the food are rich, that is, cooked with lots of oil, butter or cheese, consider reducing such food and replacing them those that provided fiber, proteins and carbohydrates, minerals and anti-oxidants


This is a very important meal of the day. Do not skip it as you may get hungry later and eat foods in large amounts or that are not healthy. I suggest a drink like tea of coffee, fruit-juice, with limited or no milk. I use soy milk and no sugar. If you would like to reduce your sugar intake, consider reducing the amount that you presently use or use an artificial sweetener.

I enjoy muesli that I make at home. I do not add any sugar. Just oats that are ligtly toasted in the oven. To this I add sunflower seeds, a combination of the following nuts, almonds/walnuts/peanuts/pecans/Brazil nuts. I then add raisins and dried cranberries. I have this with diced fresh fruit. Sometimes I have natural peanut butter on the side.

You can add any fruit, but do consider, fruits like blueberries, strawberries, raspberries that are high in anti-oxidants. Breakfast like this is very filling, satisfying and nutritious. You may decide to have a slice of toast. Go with wholewheat bread and a very light coat of butter/margarine. I prefer peanut butter to jam

On ocassion I may have leftover scones or cake of some kind. But I do try and limit this to a small portion? Don't deprive yourself. If you find this too difficult to do, then reduce the amount of breakfast that you normally have and try and introduce more healthy style eating just one day of the week, (with the idea of this being gradually increased.) On the otherhand if you are eating sensible breakfasts Monday-Friday and are missing your regular breakfasts, then splurge a bit on the weekend. You have to be gentle on yourself.

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Pay attention to what you consume and consider if it is healthy for you. The type of foods to consider reducing are: fries, rich salad dressings like,croutons, and cheeses. Toppings like these detract from the goodness of salads. Avoid food cooked in lots of oil, fried foods and so forth.

If you eat fast foods, then consider fast foods, like beans, burritos, a salad without all the rich toppings, soups or curries

Of course taking your own lunch from home is always a good idea as you save money as well as know the ingredients that it contains. Fresh fruit is always a good dessert but if you really must have ice-cream or cookies, then restrict it to a small portion. Try and save it for certain days of the week and not everyday. The best drink to quench your thirst is water.

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Once again look at the ingredients and decide if it is health promoting or not. If you really, really like a rich dish like macaroni and cheese, then go ahead and have it. But add vegetables like peppers and onions into the dish. Ensure that you have a salad with a meal that is rich. You can also serve a starter like, edadame, corn, baked zuchinni and baked egglplant. Here is a link for some Healthy Options.

As you get used to considering healthy choices, you will find yourself looking at options, if not this, then what? If you find that making a salad is too time consuming, consider just slicing a cucumber and adding a squeeze of lemon juice and some salt. Serve it as is or add nuts, chopped tomato or any other accompaniment. A cucumber is my staple.

Again give yourself some days to splurge if you need to do this. In general, limit the amount of oil that you use. Avoid adding butter to your cooking. Eat brown rice and whole wheat bread for the majority of the time.

Try eating on smaller dinner plates. You will find that you will be eating less. If you like fruit yogurt, then make your own. The store bought variety is usually very sweet. Just buy plain yogurt, add fresh fruit and sweeten just a small amount as a lot of the times, the fruit itself will act as the sweetener. Enjoy desserts but limit portions sizes.

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Wishing everyone a happy, healthy 2013.

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