It’s tough to drink in moderation during the holidays. From Halloween through New Year’s Eve, it’s constant celebrations with friends and family. Most of these occasions revolve around good food and good wine. We condone opening a nice bottle to celebrate, but it’s easy to get carried away during the fun (especially if you start drinking during the day).
Here are a few hacks to keep you from overdoing it during the holidays.
Make A Game Plan
Decide in advance how many drinks you plan to consume for the night (or week) to help monitor your drinking. The Dietary Guideline for Americans considers two drinks per day safe for men and one drink per day safe for women. Of course, this all depends on your genetics, weight, height, amount of food you ate, etc.
As a guideline, this is what is considered “one drink” for each category:
- Wine – 5oz
- Beer – 12oz
- Spirits – 1.5oz
Choose how many drinks you plan to consume and stick to your game plan.
Pour Full Glasses of Wine
It may seem counterintuitive, but by pouring a full glass of wine, you can more easily count your drinks and keep track of your alcohol consumption.
Pouring tiny tastes all night is like taking “just a bite” from the cake. It feels better psychologically in the moment, but before you know it, you ate the whole damn cake! Take the full pour and savor your glass of wine.
Bring Sparkling Water
Part of drinking behavior is the social aspect. That little something in our hands is like a grown-up security blanket. It may feel like you have something to do when you’re chatting with friends and family. But, if this is your comfort zone, you may slip into a looser state than intended.
Come prepared with a soft drink. Bring sparkling water or your other favorite non-alcoholic drink to the party. It’s just like when vegetarians bring the crudité! Come prepared to make the right decision for yourself.
Play Games with Your Friends & Family
Is drinking the only activity planned? Create lasting memories by finding a few games that you can play as a group without alcohol. A game of charades, Cantan, Cards Against Humanity (for adults only, of course)…you’ll be having so much fun that you’ll forget all about the booze.
Here are a few of my favorites:
- 3-part charades (I like to do this with celebrity names and fictional characters)
- All-ages games
- Adult games (and no, that’s not “adult” games, weirdo!)
Find Other Ways to Release Stress
Finally, many people turn to alcohol when they are stressed out, which causes overconsumption. The holiday season is a great time to try deep breathing, meditation, relaxing music, sleep, and exercise. Learn to rely on yourself to cool down when you’re wound up, and sticking to your consumption goals will be much easier!