How to Eat Healthy & Enjoy Graduation Parties

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With the end of the year and warmer weather comes celebration. Celebration often means delicious, decadent food and lots of it. Whether it be at a graduation parties, Father’s Day, weddings, family reunions or backyard barbecues with friends, there always seems to be a scrumptious spread calling your name. And let’s not forget the dessert table.

One celebration might not be so bad, but what happens when you have three parties to attend in one weekend? Don’t stay home, just be prepared and have a plan!

Read on for nine tips on how to enjoy parties while still staying on Phase I protocol:

1. Eat before you go.

Heading out to a graduation soiree where you know there will be killer desserts? Try eating a light, protein meal before you go. You won’t be hungry for the main event like fatty fried chicken and instead you will make better choices. Even the smallest snack can help when it comes to having control over the buffet table. Just remember, no matter what you do, don’t go to a party starving. You’re likely to enter a “see-all-eat-all” mentality and go overboard. Bring a sweet flavored protein bar to curb your sweet tooth.

2. Bring a healthy dish that is on your plan.

By bringing a dish to pass, you’ll at least know there will be one healthy option to eat. Serve yourself a portion of your healthy contribution and supplement it with smaller portions of things that you know are on protocol. I like to bring a platter of grilled chicken breast and a salad that has a light olive oil & fresh lemon dressing.

3. Don’t do the Taste test.

Taking just a taste or BLT (bites, licks, tastes) of things that are not on protocol will kick you out of ketosis (fat burning mode) and kick start those sugar cravings. Just DON’T do it!

4. Distract yourself.

Don’t stand or sit near the buffet or dessert table, as this can increase the temptation to start taking bites. Instead, offer to help the host out with dishes, take a break from the party to walk around the park or venture to the backyard to check out what else might be going on.

5. Be active.

After eating, don’t just sit around. Instead, get up and join in that slow-pitch softball game, round of croquet or sand volleyball match. Enjoy the experience!

6. Be mindful of your beverages.

Bring a San Pellegrino and some Ideal Protein Water Enhancer, which creates a light, tasty refreshing drink. Calories from beverages — whether it be from beer, mixed drinks, lemonade, punch or soda — will kick you out of ketosis (fat burning mode). Guzzle down two cans of Coke and you’ve just consumed 280 calories and nearly 80 grams of sugars. That’s about 20 teaspoons! Here’s what happens with alcohol: it takes time to process in the liver and can turn off fat burning, dropping your blood sugar and could have you passing out (with just one drink).

7. Eat Slowly.

Put your fork down in between bites. Enjoy socializing. Eat 80% of what is on your plate.

8. Balance your plate.

Just as you would for a typical dinner around the table at home, try to balance your plate. Your plate should be 80% veggies, 20%h lean protein.

9. Use a dessert plate.

Swing by the dessert table first before hitting up the food, but only to snatch a smaller, dessert-sized plate. Ditching an over-sized dinner plate in favor of a smaller plate aids in portion control and will prevent you from overindulging right off the bat.

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