EAT AND DRINK MINDFULLY

(Health) Heading to a party and obsessing over whether or not you should indulge in all the good food? So not worth your time. These tips will help you savor the season while still respecting your body's cues:

Carry a pack of gum
We'd never suggest you pass up a tasty holiday buffet but if you're tired of food hangovers after too many nights out, consider this party hack: Pop a piece of gum in your mouth 15 minutes before you grab a plate: "Chewing gum tricks your brain into thinking you're eating, so you actually eat less," says Susan Albers, PsyD., a clinical psychologist and author of Eating Mindfully. Downing a mint in between helpings can be useful too: "It gives your body time to get a read on whether you are full or not," Albers says. "Make a deal with yourself that you can have seconds if you're still hungry by the time the mint dissolves in your mouth."

Alternate cocktails and water
Before you arrive at a fete, decide how many drinks you're going to have. Health recommend sticking with just one or two. Then after each champagne or pomegranate martini, sip a glass of water or seltzer with a twist. This pattern will help you stay hydrated, so you can avoid a throbbing headache tomorrow. And make sure you snake on some appetizers before you hit the bar: "If we don't eat before we drink, that can throw off blood sugar," says Steven Feinleib, M.D., a staff physician in preventive medicine at the Cleveland Clinic in Ohio; this can cause weariness the next day.

Don't be too rigid
Setting multiple rules for yourself at a party like no cake, no puff pastry, no eggnog, can backfire, and suck all the joy out of the occasion. Instead, try celebrity trainer Gunnar Peterson's trick: "I zero in on a single healthy practice," he says. "It can be anything from not drinking alcohol to skipping the appetizers or desserts. If you give yourself one thing, you're likely to stick with it."

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