Will you gain or maintain this season?

Tis the season to be jolly, but it is also the season to overstress, overeat, and under nourish ourselves. To see how you'll fare with the many holiday temptations, check out my quiz below.

1. It's the most wonderful time of year...
a. to spend with family b. to eat dessert
2. Modifying your holiday recipes to make them healthier would elicit...
a. praise b. mutiny
3. Exercise is...
a. part or your routine b. something I'll start on January 2nd
4. If you eat a slice of pumpkin pie during dessert, the sugar cookies on the table are...
a. safe b. already in my belly
5. A setback on the scale causes you to...
a. have fruit for dessert tonight b. help youself to an endless glass of eggnog

Mostly a's

You've got this! Aim to maintain your weight this season whether you've just started losing or have succeeded for a while. Choose to allow one daily treat per day while eating nutritionally dense foods and continue to maintain your weekly exercise plan as you navigate around holiday events. Our tip: allow yourself to loosen the reins a bit to prevent feeling discouraged by missed goals.

Mostly b's

All year, you look forward to pumpkin pie, yule log, and rugelach. It's OK to take a break and let your guard down a bit. Guilt is one of the biggest triggers for emotional eating so accept and plan for a small weight gain and then enjoy your favorites without the need to beat yourself up afterward. Our tip: have a salad or broth based soup prior to holiday gatherings and take a vegetable based appetizer such as this delicious Eggplant Dip add to the cheer.

Healthy Eggplant Dip

Eggplant Dip

Ingredients

Roasted Garlic:
1/2 cup olive oil
6 cloves garlic

Dip:
3 eggplant, peeled, seeded and cut into chunks
1/4 cup grated onion (use a box grater on the largest side)
1/2 teaspoon hot Hungarian paprika
1/4 cup loosely packed chopped fresh parsley
1/4 cup Greek yogurt
Zest of 1 lemon plus 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
Chopped fresh parsley, for garnish

Directions

For the roasted garlic: Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.

In a ramekin, add the olive oil and garlic. Roast until the oil begins to bubble and the garlic becomes a very light golden brown, 15 to 20 minutes. Transfer the garlic to a large bowl and put half of the oil in a large pan. Reserve the rest of the oil in the ramekin for garnishing.

For the dip: In the large pan with the garlic-infused oil, add the eggplant, onion and paprika; you may have to do this in batches. Turn to medium-high heat and cook, tossing, until all sides of the eggplant are lightly golden brown, 6 to 8 minutes per batch. Transfer everything in the pan, bits and all, to the large bowl with the awaiting garlic.

Chop the contents of the bowl until broken down but still a bit chunky. Add the parsley, yogurt and lemon zest and juice to the bowl. Stir to combine, taste and season with salt and pepper. Garnish with fresh parsley. Serve with fresh veggies and enjoy!

Recipe courtesy of Sunny Anderson

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