Holiday Weight Loss Tip: Eat a 4-Course Meal

holiday table

It’s an old diet trick that works when you’re eating at a restaurant, but why not try it at home during the festive time of year?

This Holiday season, try something new: serve your big meals in courses. Having just one course on the table (such as an appetizer, or salad, then soup), before the main meal arrives, helps everyone at the table pace themselves. In the long run you’ll eat less. By the time the main course with all the trimmings (and let’s not forget Aunt Ethel’s delicious pies) grace the table, you’re much less likely to go overboard. 

Yes, serving the meal in courses is a little bit more of a dance than setting all food out at once, so here are four steps to make it seamless:

  1. Let your guests know what to expect before the meal starts.
  2. Set a plate at the table for each course. Bowls for soup, a salad plate, and the main dinner plate take care of everything. You can bring out dessert plates at the same time as the dessert.
  3. As your family arrives, split the tasks of bringing out the course and picking up used plates between 3 different adults: one can bring out soup while someone else picks up the used salad plates. The soup “server” can pick up the soup plates, while “next in line” brings out the main dish and trimmings, etc. 
  4. Don’t be surprised if mealtime takes longer. In fact, plan for it, especially if you have any diehard sports fans in the family that will be planning to watch games after the meal.

Do you have any tips I may have forgotten? Be sure to let me know in the comments below!


Michelle Jones

Michelle Jones is head copywriter, recipe curator, makeup artist, and occasional stage hand at Full Plate Living by day, and a ridiculously happy mother of a toddler at night. You can keep up with her random musings on Twitter.  

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