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      Eating healthy during the holidays

      COLUMBIA (WACH) -- Richard Robertson is ready for Christmas, but as for his diet, the verdict is still out.

      I think this year we are going to have a ham, but what else comes with it? That is going to be a total surprise to me, Robertson says.

      According to Lisa Akly, a clinical dietitian at Palmetto Health Richland, planning and portion control is the best defense for battling the bulge.

      You might want to spend your calorie budget on foods that are more seasonal and most important to you, Akly says.

      She adds to pick two or three of your favorites, eating only one serving of each.

      To balance out your plate, go with healthier options, like fruits and vegetables which will help fill you up and won't leave you feeling deprived.

      Another way to eat what you like is to substitute healthy ingredients in your traditional recipes.

      You can modify your recipes with lighter ingredients, says Akly. For example, if a recipe calls for half-and-half or heavy cream, you can try using skim evaporated milk.

      One day of overeating won TMt ruin your diet.

      Yeah, you can have a little bit of what you fancy when you fancy it, Robertson says.

      Robertson adds this Christmas, he plans to eat, drink and be merry, all within reason.