Our beloved Chicago Bears have two home games left in October and you know what that means…time to tailgate! Get to a Bears game a few hours early to tailgate. Or if you’re watching the game from the warmth of your own home you can “table-gate.” Either way, great food, drinks and friends make the Bears games even better.
But all the excitement of the game can cause you to overeat – whether you’re celebrating victories or drowning your game day blues in food. So, how do you get through the football season without the extra pounds? Just follow these simple rules for a healthy game day:
Rule #1: Serve small portions
If you’re hosting a tailgate party, divide the high-calorie appetizer or dessert into small portions. This way you can help your family and guests save hundreds of calories by serving smaller bites. If you’re attending a tailgate, bring a healthy dish, such as Tex-Mex Mini Meatloaves, to give you and others options. Also, try controlling the portion sizes by using a smaller plate or put just a “taste” of each dish on your plate. The calorie difference can be quite significant.
Rule #2: Start your day with breakfast
Game day activities (read: cheering for the home team) require lots of energy. That’s why you should start your day with a good breakfast. When you skip breakfast, you run the risk of overeating. Simply put, when you are super hungry you will consume more calories than if you spread them out during the day.
Rule #3: Limit alcohol consumption
Party pooper alert – consuming alcoholic beverages can provide many unwanted calories and cause you to overeat. So try limiting your alcohol consumption while tailgating as much as you can. After three or four beers, you are not going to have much control over what you are eating. Your will power tends to go out the window once you begin drinking alcohol, so don’t overdo it.
Rule # 4: Bring your favorite low- or no-calorie beverages
You can limit your alcohol intake and still enjoy the tailgate by bringing your favorite low- or no-cal beverages to the party. Whether it’s diet soda or flavored water, these crowd pleasers will be gone in a flash.
Rule #5: Don’t focus on the food
Don’t hang out at the food table. Grab a small plate of food and go mingle. Make sure you talk to everyone instead of hovering over the hot wings or staying glued to the buffet table. You’ll eat less and have a few pleasant and fun conversations in the process.
Leave a comment if there’s a particular “rule” that’s worked for you or if you find one of my tips helpful.
Here’s to a victorious season for the Bears and a healthy, fun tailgate for you.