by Taylor Wilcox, Dietetic Intern from Central Michigan University
As with any big holiday, food tends to play a major part in how we celebrate. Easter marks the end of the Lenten season and for many,this means ending a 40 day fast from a favorite food or beverage such as chocolate, chips or soda. It can be easy to overeat those foods once the fast is over and when we attend a family gathering filled with many delicious foods. Here are some tips on how you can enjoy your Easter without overindulging.
Have a Small Meal Before the Big One
People tend to wait all day to eat in order to be ready for the big meal ahead of them. The goal of this could be to save some calories, but it often leads to overeating or grazing on the many calorie dense foods that will be in front of you later. Your small meal ahead of the big one could be a colorful salad, vegetables and hummus, or your favorite fruit with any nut butter.
Set a “Healthy Goal” for the Meal
There are always going to be those delicious calorie dense foods at the gathering and I’m here to remind you that it is completely okay to include those foods on your plate! One way you can make your holiday meal as nutritiously dense as it is calorie dense, is to set a goal before the meal of how much healthy food you want to include. A great target you can set is to fill half of your plate with fruits and vegetables. Remember, don’t set yourself up for failure! Set goals that you know you will be able to achieve, even if they seem small.
Enjoy Your Food
It is easy to eat your food as fast as you can at the holidays because it tastes great and you probably don’t get to eat those types of foods very often. For the same reason, take the time to slow down and appreciate every bite of that delicious meal! This not only helps you enjoy your meal to the fullest, but can also help you be more mindful of your hunger cues. Our hunger cues tell us when we are hungry, satisfied, and full; a great place to stop eating is when you feel satisfied.
What to Do if You Overindulge
Relax! You are only human and it’s a special day to enjoy. You can always make healthier choices the next day such as adding extra vegetables to your meals or going for a walk. A little indulgence is perfectly fine every once in a while.
About the Author
Hi! My name is Taylor Wilcox and I am a dietetic intern from Central Michigan University. I received my Bachelor’s degree in Nutrition and Dietetics through CMU in 2019. Currently, I am working on my dietetic internship to become a registered dietitian. I am completing my food service rotation through Senior Services with Megan Geierman, the Nutrition Program Director. I have learned a lot about food service and how Senior Services works to bring nutritious and flavorful meals to the community. It has been great to see how a dietitian can fit into this role as well. I am originally from Portland, MI and plan on moving to the Detroit area once the internship is complete. My three favorite things are the beach, my cat, and the MSU Spartans (go green!).