Party time: How can you keep it healthy during the holidays?

GF Default - Staying healthy over the holidays
GF Default - Staying healthy over the holidays

The office holiday party, family gatherings and Christmas parties with friends all have one thing in common -- a lot of delicious food!

Appetizers, drinks, pies and cookies -- holiday parties are all about the food.

The average person consumes over 6,000 calories on Christmas, but registered dietitian Megan Ware said one day of indulgence isn’t the issue.

“It’s not the one day that blows everything out of the water. It’s feeling like you’re off track for the week before and then you’re off track for the week after,” Ware said.

But on those days, how can you enjoy the party without sabotaging your waistline?

Don’t arrive hungry, or load up on salad before hitting the buffet table.

And choose your drinks carefully. Eggnog has about 223 calories per cup, while a vodka soda has only 64. Also, white wine typically has less calories than red.

When it comes to dip, pick the hummus over cream cheese-based dips. They have double the calories and more fat.

But most importantly, have a realistic plan!

“Walking into this event, ask yourself, ‘What would success look like to me? Does that mean I’m going to have the dessert or does that mean I’m going to skip the rolls?’” Ware said.

Pick your favorite treats and skip the rest, she suggested.

Offer to bring a healthy dish to parties so you can fill up on that first.

Another tip before going to a party -- set a drink limit. If you say two, stick to two.

Ware said the best move after a night of heavy eating is to get up, drink a lot of water and go on a brisk walk.