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Eating Healthy For Super Bowl Sunday

By Dr. Keith Kantor and Dana Yarn, RDLDEating Healthy for the Super Bowl

Super bowl is almost here and for most Americans it is a fun filled day centered on the TV and an endless snack buffet.  This tradition does not have to undo all of your healthy New Year's habits.  Here are some coaching tips to keep Super Bowl Sunday fun, yet healthy. 

The day of the big game you want to be very active, the football players on the field are the only ones who are active during the game, watching the big game is definitely a sedentary activity.  Grab a workout in the morning, play with your kids outside, walk your dog around your neighborhood, deep clean part of your house, avoid sitting around before the game.  The extra activity will keep your metabolic rate higher than normal. 

Whatever you do, do not skip meals the day of the game.  Showing up to a party starving is only asking for trouble, you will end up eating double or triple the amount of snacks that you would if you were not starving.  Bring a healthy dish like a vegetable tray with hummus or guacamole, chicken skewers, homemade meatballs or even a chili. 

If the game turns out to be a bust and you find yourself wandering over to food out of boredom after you have already eaten, go for the veggies.  Veggies take a longer time to eat, chew, and will not break the bank in terms of calories, fat or processed ingredients.  The extra water and fiber in the veggies can also keep you feeling fuller giving you more self-control with the not so healthy items at the party.

Avoid excessive alcohol.  Alternate alcoholic drinks with a large glass of water and commit to stopping after 1 or 2 drinks.  Alcohol in general can promote increased appetite and release inhibition causing you to eat excessively.  If you do drink go for a low sugar drink like a spritzer, wine or light beer. 

Ditch the processed starches, chips, crackers, and French fries are all low nutrient fillers that will send your energy and blood sugars on a wild roller coaster causing you to lose control of your satiety signals often leading to excessive consumption of calories.  When blood sugar drops you could even find yourself in a recliner coma.  The bottom line is excessive carbohydrates that are not used as energy will turn to fat.  Fill your plate up with vegetables, a bun less burger, or other protein and even a moderate portion of nuts, cheese or guacamole for healthy fats. 

Avoid giving into the peer pressure of finishing everything because it is there.  It's okay to throw away the remainder of the chips or potato skins.  The "clean up call" by the host is not great for the waistline, you could consume upwards of 1000 calories by finishing up the snacks. 

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