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The December Dessert Challenge

Fruit

A challenge, involving dessert? Tell me more! Before you get too excited, the dessert challenge involves trying to cut back to only one dessert a week. While the prospect of one sweet, decadent dish per week may not sound that appealing, it will certainly come in handy around the holidays when we all tend to put on a few extra pounds (which we later regret come New Year’s Day) or to help prevent other health issues, such as obesity or diabetes. So, for one month, see if you can successfully cut back to one dessert per week. It’s not as hard as you think, and we have some ideas to get you through:

Start Small

Going “cold turkey” may not be something you have the energy for, so start small. Try cutting your dessert consumption by half, or try taking smaller portions. Once you start to see the positive health results (likely in just a few days) you’ll be more willing to move forward to the full challenge.

Substitute

Try substituting dessert items for healthier alternatives. Instead of a blueberry muffin, try just blueberries. By making healthier choices you can change your dessert into a nutritious snack instead. Fresh fruit, nuts, seeds, and whole grains are great options. Or have a 22 Days Nutrition bar! With ingredients like chocolate, coffee, nuts and dried fruit, you'll be sure to satisfy your taste buds.

Choose Better Alternatives

We tend to eat sweets for the wrong reasons – like to relieve stress or when we are feeling low. Instead of reaching for that chocolate bar, get up and go for a walk, lift some weights, or do a quick yoga routine. You’ll feel better, promise. The same goes if you tend to eat sweets (or snacks) at night while watching television. Break the habit by turning off the TV. Or stay busy while watching the tube by adding step-aerobics, treadmill running or lunges. That way your TV time can be calorie burning time. The more you train your body to expect healthy alternatives to desserts, the less you’ll find you crave the treats. Nobody’s perfect, so if you end up cheating once in a while don’t beat yourself up about it. Remember that every time you cut out dessert or replace it with a healthy alternative, you are consuming less sugar, fat and fewer calories – something that your body will appreciate and repay in kind.

We're In This Together!

We're in this together. Join us on Facebook and Twitter, where we'll be cheering each other on to keep up the good work and create healthy new habits together. If you haven't connected with us yet, be sure to like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter. On Twitter, include the hashtag #22DaysChallenge to share with others. Photo: LOLren