8 TIPS AND TRICKS ON HOW TO SURVIVE THE SILLY SEASON:
1.  Spoil your appetite – Avoid arriving to a function where you about to devour the snack table. If you stick to eating regular meals, you can really keep your hunger in check. It might sound silly but it you’re feeling very hungry have a snack before you go. The ideal snack is combining two food groups together, so it hits the spot. An example would be a slice of low GI bread with avo or peanut butter or something like handful of lean biltong and nuts.
2. Drink lots – Of water that is! This is something you’ll need to make a conscious effort on,as we mostly forget to do this. The good old water bottle, keeping that handy will do the trick. As we probably need to drink more as the summer heat, too many salty foods and too much alcohol can leave our bodies depleted of vital water stores. Also,thirst can easily be confused for hunger causing us to eat unnecessarily.
3. Choose wisely – Party food is often fried and high in fat and/or sugar. When you combine these foods with alcohol you’re left with a recipe for weight gain disaster. Skip the sausage rolls, mini pies, pastries, chips and creamy dips and go for sandwiches with low fat fillings, fresh fruit, veggie sticks, pretzels, rice crackers, sushi, skinless chicken pieces, mini meat balls and salsa dip.
And remember you are there for the people, not the food.
4. Step away from the food – Avoid standing too close to the snack table and rather choose to chat to a colleague/friend away from the food, this will make you less likely to pick mindlessly on foods.
5. Liquid calories – Alcohol is packed with calories and is not great for our health or our waistline. Go for lower alcohol and/or calorie drink choices. Choose light beer/cider, wine/champagne spritzers (mixed with ice or soda water), single tots rather than doubles, spirits with fresh lime/lemon, lots of ice and soda water or mix them with sugar-free soft drinks and whenever possible avoid sugar-laden cocktails.  A nice trick is to have a glass of water next to your alcoholic drink, and alternate between the two.
6. Sleep well – Make sure that even with all the partying going on you are still getting 7-8 hours of sleep most nights. Poor sleep can equal weight gain due to a hormone (called leptin)not being adequately replenished in our blood. During periods of sleep deprivation low levels of this hormone cause us to eat more the following day.
7.Run, baby run! –  If you want to indulge in those few extra treats, exercise is a great way to maintain your weight by help you burn off it off . For instance if you have an extra glass of champagne, try go for a 20-30 minute ride the next day, take the dog for a walk or get involved in a backyard cricket game with your kids.
8. Enjoy yourself – Last but not least. Remember it is a season of family reunions, fun and celebrations. Listen to your body, this is a season of over-indulgence, try and listen to your body, to when it is full. You can always have more the next day. If you go into the season trying to lose weight and only manage to maintain your weight through the festivities that is still a great achievement.