Handling the holidays when you're trying to lose weight

Many people are starting to think about the foods that will be served for the holidays. Here are some ideas that may help to lighten up your meals.

Turkey: The white meat in turkey breast is low in fat, especially compared to dark meat in the legs and thighs. In one 3-ounce serving of roasted turkey breast, there is about 2.7 grams of fat (dark meat has more than 6 fat grams per 3-ounce serving).

Turkey is also a great source of protein, providing about 25 grams of protein per 3-ounce serving. Turkey breast is an excellent source of B vitamins, a good source of iron and zinc, and provides magnesium and potassium.

Turkey can spell trouble when it is prepared with extra fat, or made with high-calorie stuffing. Not to mention topping turkey off with gravy adds a lot of extra fat calories.

There are several ways you can enjoy the holiday meal without going overboard. First, consume the breast meat and remove the skin. That can save 360 calories in a 3-ounce serving.

If you're preparing the turkey, you can prepare the stuffing separately from the turkey. This will help prevent the fat from the turkey soaking into the stuffing. Look for a low-sodium, low-fat stuffing recipe.

Take time to sort through recipes. Work on revising recipes to be lower in fat and calories. If you're planning on having dips, use fat-free sour cream or non-fat yogurt as a base. Instead of chips, dip fresh vegetables and baked pita bread. Recipes for baked goods that require margarine, butter or oil substitute, substitute half the amount with applesauce.

In order to remain in control, have the proper attitude. Achieving and maintaining weight loss goals involves eating healthy for life. Parties and gatherings are always going to be a part of life, so learning how to handle them is one aspect of a healthy lifestyle.

There is also the temptation of alcohol. Alcohol interferes with the metabolism of nutrients and stimulates the appetite. It does not provide any nutrients. Alcohol yields 7 calories per gram. A 12-ounce beer has about 150 calories, while 4 ounces of wine has about 90 calories.

If you find yourself hanging out in the kitchen with friends and family, you may find yourself eating more. Visit in another room away from the food.

Start the day with a healthy breakfast. Stick to a regular eating schedule so that you don't find yourself hungry and snacking on all of those tempting foods that you are trying to avoid. Plan to eat well.

Thank you for reading Diet Center's Tip of the Week. If you want to lose weight, there is no point in waiting for the new year when you can start reaching that goal weight now. Please feel free to call (928) 753-5066 or stop by Diet Center at 1848 Hope Ave. in Kingman.