When it comes to holiday dinners, we all know the drill: don't eat breakfast (or lunch) to build up an appetite (or reduce calories) in preparation for the feast to come.
But is this the wrong way to go about it?
Is skipping meals before a holiday feast counterproductive?
The short answer: YES!
If you're attempting to eat in moderation, you need to keep to your routine: breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Eating healthful foods throughout the day means you're likely to eat fewer calories later.
- Breakfast doesn't need to be heavy. Instead, try a deliciously seasonal-appropriate protein smoothie-like our Cinnamon Sweet Potato Pie Smoothie recipe.
- Lunch should be quick and straightforward. You're already, presumedly, cooking, so slap together a cold-cut sandwich or a 10-minute pita bread pizza.
Eat Earlier and Burn It Off
There is another alternative, though— host your dinner earlier. When you don't burn off the nutrients from large meals by the end of the night, the body stores it as fat.
Since your fridge will be full of leftovers, you can go for a second helping later in the evening (after an early dinner, read Thanksgiving lunch.) But, of course, that also means less cooking for you, because who wants to cook breakfast, lunch, plus a feast fit for five-plus people? No one.
Some are fans of an early dinner because it means the rest of the day is more leisurely. There's more downtime in the evening to sit back and enjoy family and conversation.
Remember, Life is More Than Calorie Counting
We want you to keep in mind that obsessing over calories should take second place to enjoying your family and the many foods cooked out of love. Because in all actuality, one day of over-indulgence is unlikely to impact your long-term health goals.
If you genuinely want to eat mindfully, sample your favorite dishes but mind the portion size.