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Avoid the "Negative Calorie Illusion" this Holiday Season

'Tis the season for family, festivities, and food — a lot of food. This time of year is full of overindulgence, whether it be caused by holiday parties, cookie exchanges, or the constantly replenished candy jar in the office. All this temptation can be detrimental to a healthy diet, no matter how disciplined you were earlier in the year. 

One way to combat the seemingly inevitable holiday weight gain is to fill your plate with fruits and vegetables, then enjoy all the other holiday treats in moderation. The key is to avoid the "negative calorie illusion" which is the idea that simply adding a healthy item to a meal will prevent the meal from leading to weight gain. In fact, adding a healthy item to an already full plate just adds more calories.

There are no healthy foods that can "cancel" out other unhealthy foods. It's true that most of us do not eat enough fruits and vegetables, but we won't fix the problem with a tiny garnish here and there. So this holiday season, the real challenge is learning to think of healthy foods as so delicious that you eat them for their own sake, rather than the food you have to eat before you get to the good stuff.

To find cooking classes with healthy recipes perfect for the holidays, check out the "Eat Better" tab of the LiveWellSTL website!

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