Maintaining or losing weight during all the holiday festivities is next to impossible. However, focusing on portion sizes helps you to avoid overeating and keeps you satisfied … without the guilt.

One strategy is to drink a glass or two of water before your big holiday meal or have a light snack. This slows you down and keeps you from scarfing. Continue drinking water throughout the meal. If possible, start with a broth-based soup or a light salad to avoid stuffing two or three dinner rolls in your mouth before the ham is served. If you have eyes bigger than your stomach, grab a smaller plate so you can still fill it up without overindulging.

As for alcohol, we won’t tell you to abstain – we aren’t monsters. Instead, step away from the sugary cocktails and try a liquor neat or mix it with something with few or zero calories (like soda water, tonic or ice). The lack of sugar also helps if you’re prone to hangovers. You’re welcome.

Above all, remember that it’s a time to be thankful and relax. If you want to eat the cheesecake, eat the cheesecake.

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