Holiday spread of food

How to Sail Through the Holidays without Gaining a Pound

Written by Tricia Nelson

If you assume that on January 1st you’ll automatically have weight to lose on account of holiday eating, think again. There is a way that you can enjoy the holidays, including great food, without going overboard. 

Here are 5 suggestions that can help you stay in check during holiday time:

  1. Try the “3 Meal Magic” plan.
    Three meals with nothing in between but calorie-free liquids. You’ll be amazed at how much easier it is to abstain from unhealthy foods when you work within the three meal structure; only eat meals, not nibbley things like nuts, chips, or candies. You will be eliminating most of the trouble foods when you practice 3 Meal Magic!

  2. “Just one” Theory.
    Remember, there is no such thing as “just one”. If you think you can handle eating just one, or even just one handful of nibbley things, take a hard look as to how successful you’ve been at eating “just one”. “None” is better than “some”, especially if you’re prone to emotional eating. 

  3. Help out by serving others.
    Instead of hanging out by the dessert table looking for some company, be proactive and help the hostess. Clear the table or offer to do some dishes. Getting into action will take your mind off of food and fill you up with a feeling of usefulness. 

  4. Free food isn’t free.
    I don’t know why this is, but whenever food is free, people think they had better get their fill. It’s been a long time since the last famine, so it really doesn’t make sense. Tell yourself you can have whatever you want, anytime, even if you have to pay for it later. Then just decline the freebies.

  5. Buffet. 
    Food buffets, especially at restaurants, are usually big traps for emotional eaters. Even if we intend to eat a normal amount, by the time we’re in the middle of the buffet and have a full plate, we feel obligated to continue putting food on until we’re at the end. The best thing to do is to peruse the entire length of the buffet before starting.


Tricia Nelson lost fifty pounds by identifying and healing the underlying causes of her emotional eating. Tricia has spent over thirty years researching the hidden causes of the addictive personality. Tricia is an Emotional Eating Expert and author of the #1 bestselling book, Heal Your Hunger, 7 Simple Steps to End Emotional Eating Now. Tricia is the host of the popular podcast, The Heal Your Hunger Show and is a highly regarded speaker. Tricia has been featured on NBC, CBS, KTLA, FOX and Discovery Health. Learn more at