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Dieting Tips For Your Christmas Fare
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Here are a few tips on how to enjoy all the Christmas fare without gaining tons of weight. Christmas has always been renowned for being a time to eat and drink to excess. It's a time to get together with family and friends. Sharing mealtimes is a very sociable thing that our society does. It's wonderful to sit around a festively decorated table which is laden with the pork, turkey, ham and necessary accompanyments and be blessed with loving, friendly company at the same time. What better way to spend Christmas?

Then, on Boxing Day, you get on the scales and all that Christmas cheer has gone straight to your thighs! Oh, no! Disaster. It must have been that last mince pie - everything else I ate was ok. Sound familiar? It really doesn't have to be that way. A glass of wine or two with your meal never hurt anyone. If you have red wine, it's actually good for you being stuffed with antioxidents. If your choice of poison is more along the lines of beer and spirits you do have a problem!Try to limit your calorie intake in alcohol by drinking light beer or diet sodas, or even have water with your scotch instead of soda. Try to drink water between drinks. It helps to fill you up too.

Turkey is actually good for you to eat if you are trying to lose weight. It has much fewer calories than any red meat, especially if you aim for the breast meat rather than the dark meat. When you cook your turkey, don't lather it in butter or oil before you cook it. You will just be adding more calories that are really quite unnecessary. Avoid eating the skin at all - it's loaded with fat and calories. When roasting potatoes, par boil them first then spray with a light cooking oil. They will be deliciously crispy without absorbing too much fat/oil. Vegetables are no major problems dieting people at Christmas, providing they are not tossed in butter just prior to serving. Pork crackle is, unfortunately, a definite no-no. It is pure fat that goes straight to your hips, without passing go! Pork leg meat is a fairly acceptable choice of protein for dieters, unlike the shoulder which has a much higher fat content. Lean pork has the Heart Foundation tick of approval. Lean ham similarly is a good source of protein, just avoid the fatty bits.

You would be doing yourself a favour if you left the Christmas pudding alone, but if you really MUST have some, make it a small serving. Believe it or not, an average 150ml serving of custard made with full-cream milk has more calories than a tablespoon of fresh cream. I don't think there is any such thing as a non-fattening mince pie. I think the only way to make them friendly for people who are dieting would be to make your own fruit mince, using a sugar substitute, then only eating the filling and giving the pastry to whichever dog is sitting underneath the dining table waiting for tasty morsels to come their way!

Instead of cranberry sauce with your turkey you could make a cranberry salsa using a sugar substitute, sauted onion, diced apple, a pinch of nutmeg and fresh, finely diced sweet red pepper. Much healthier and very tasty too. If your Christmas evening meal consists of left over turkey, pork and ham served with an assortment of salads, so the same thing. Eat the lean turkey breast meat with cold salsa, lean pork leg meat and lean ham with as much fresh salad vegetables as you like. Try to steer clear of salads made with any sort of mayo dressing - a dressing of olive oil, vinegar, salt & pepper is much better for you.

Finally, after you have been ever so good and stayed away from the most fattening aspects of your Christmas fare, treat yourself to a nice long walk, preferably with some family and friends in attendance too. It will help to burn off some of those calories, aid your digestion and just make you feel good! Bon appetite & Merry Christmas!

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