No matter how much we try to avoid stating it, holiday meals are a central part of the celebration process and even large amounts of willpower cannot completely save one from completely avoiding going overboard in terms of calorie intake. All is not lost however, as there are still a variety of tricks that can be used to ensure that only minimal damage will be done. Here are a few things to consider:

Eat regularly Avoid the temptation to save yourself from eating too much by starving before a large meal. Doing so will only weaken your will to practice portion control and will cause you to miss the satiety signals your body will be sending you.

Wear tight fitting clothes Aside from being flattering, such pieces also act as a gentle reminder for potion control, helping you stay on track and look spectacular while doing so. A great conversation starter, a fabulous outfit will remind you of your motivation in the process.

Skip non-essentials The large amount of irresistible hors d’oeuvres and calorie-filled main courses will invariably take a toll on your willpower if you don’t set a few rules beforehand. One such helpful rule is making sure that you only taste foods that you like and that you can’t have every day. This way the sense of indulgence will be preserved while the calorie range will be kept under control.

Avoid tasting everything you prepare A bite here, a morsel there might not seem like much but the truth is that a single tablespoon can mean 100 extra calories and they can add up surprisingly fast. If possible, let your family members be the judges and leave it up to them to decide what ingredients need to be added or whether it is cooked enough.

Use cooking substitutes There are a myraid of possible substitutes for part of the ingredients of your favorite traditional recipes. Now is the perfect time to use them as the combined effect of a few easy substitutions can have an absolutely staggering calorie-reducing effect. Butter can be easily replaced with unsweetened applesauce, for example and there are many other similar replacements.

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