If the notion of staying svelte in spite of the temptations of the holidays seems remote, take heart. We've got tips and tricks that will not only make you appear a good ten pounds thinner instantly but will also help you eat wisely while still enjoying all the celebrations during this festive season. Read on for our strategies to make sure you look lean and lovely on December 31st. Happy New Year!
Eat, Drink, and Be Merry – But Don't Overdo It
There's no need to pass up the Christmas cookies or the Chanukah latkes altogether. You'd be a Grinch if you did! The trick is to practice portion control, not just with the sweets and treats but with the main courses and trimmings as well. To keep from overindulging, drink plenty of water. It will fill you up and quiet hunger pangs, and it's also great for promoting good digestion.
Another ploy is to eat slowly and savor every bite. Let the flavors and aromas linger long enough that you can really take pleasure in them instead of gulping down food in a hurry. Also, there's typically a lot of conversation at a holiday table, and that's wonderful, but don't be so focused on talking that you're not paying attention to what you're eating. Very often people reach for second helpings simply because they've cleaned their plates without even realizing how much they've put away. Join all the festive chatter, but stay aware of what you're putting in your mouth. You'll consume far less – and enjoy it more!
As for drinking, go ahead and raise a glass but promise yourself you won't have more than two drinks and that preferably you'll stick with your usual one drink per day. Alcohol has calories, as you know. If the night is long, why not switch to seltzer or club soda with a twist after you've toasted during the first round?
Underneath It All
Beyond keeping your holiday intake under control so you don't gain too much weight, there's a lot you can do to "dress thin." Start by investing in body shaper undergarments such as Spanx to tame trouble spots and smooth out your silhouette. Your best bet is an all-in-one style like Spanx "Slim Cognito" so you won't have any bulges peeking out above the waistline the way they always did with old-fashioned girdles and even control-top pantyhose.
A good bra is essential a well. Consider having yours fitted by a professional to be certain you get exactly the support and shaping you need to look your best.
Color Blocks to the Rescue!
One of this year's hottest fashion trends has been the color block dress, a clever trompe l'oeil idea that uses dark panels in strategic places. Kate Winslet rocked the red carpet at the Venice Film Festival in a stunning color block dress designed by Stella McCartney and that helped set the trend in motion. At ThirdAge, we did a slideshow about it. Here's the link so your can see Kate's "miracle dress" and some affordable knock-offs now if you missed them earlier!
That Old Black Magic
There's a reason the LBD is a time-honored classic. Black does more to create the illusion of slenderness than any other color. Pick a figure-skimming style that doesn't hug your curves too closely, but avoid blousy or loose looks. They don't hide anything and they only make you look heavier than you really are.
A final note: Heels are incredibly flattering and they give your legs a longer, leaner appearance. This is no time for sensible shoes! Wear your sneakers to the party and change in the ladies' room if need be, but don't pass up this chance to look as fabulous and slim as you possibly can!