How single moms keep weight gain off their plates

December 19, 2012

The holiday season is a time of friendship, family and togetherness, as well as a lot of parties, plenty of cookies and enough miscellaneous baked goods to blow out anyone's waistline. For single moms, worrying about college scholarships and kids is enough trouble on its own without also being concerned about fitting into professional clothing after the holidays. With money tight and stress mounting about how to curb spending while still having a good time, single moms need to be mindful of what they eat.

Skip the snacks
Appetizers and hors d'oeuvres are classic pre-meal treats at many holiday parties, and a lot of these are rich, savory tidbits that can be hard to resist. Having one or two won't be ruinous to a diet plan, but more than a half dozen is a meal all on its own. Cheese and crackers are a major pitfall, as these are loaded with fat and carbs, so if snacking is to occur, try to stick to vegetables and avoid dipping sauces.

Drink more water
Even at parties, water is a safe alternative to anything else offered for imbibing. Alcohol is one of the biggest traps in terms of calories, because when people are a little tipsy, they also tend to eat with less discretion. On top of that, alcoholic drinks pack a lot more calories than even sugary soda, making spiked eggnog a landmine in terms of balancing an evening.

The best solution in these situations is to stick to water, possibly with a little bit of mint, lemon or lime. Sparkling water is good, too, for a little extra class, but not all hosts will provide it, so beware of seltzer in these situations, as it contains calories where water doesn't. In order to save money and still bring something to share, skip the beer cooler at the grocery store and bring a nice bottle of sparkling water to share.

Plan not to eat
Coming up with methods of distraction from food is best, even if it's using a smartphone or engaging strangers. Radical avoidance will exclude consumption completely from the picture, and the less mindful a person is of the snack table, the less likely they'll want to eat. One way of pulling this off without being starving and grumpy the whole time is to have a meal before heading over, as this will act as a natural appetite suppressant.

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