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Dear Hungry Girl,

What do you think are the biggest diet mistakes people make during the holiday season, and how can I avoid making them?

Holiday Bulge Avoider
Dear Holiday Bulge Avoider,

First of all, love the name... HA! I have a hard time typing that without giggling. But on to your question. I think people make MANY food mistakes around the holidays. The first (and possibly BIGGEST) mistake is to give up completely. Making a blanket decision like, "I'm NOT going to think about what I'm eating over the holidays at all -- I'll worry about it on January 1st," is a BAD idea (in my opinion). With all the crazy-fattening foods that are everywhere during the holidays, that approach can easily cause you to gain several pounds very quickly. So don't do that. Instead, take one day, one meal, and one snack at a time, and remain aware of what you are eating. If you splurge at one meal, be a little more cautious at the next. Another mistake people make is to set huge goals that are sometimes unattainable. If you commit to not eat ANY holiday foods or to LOSE ten pounds by New Year's, you are likely setting yourself up for failure. Then you might become discouraged and just give up. My advice is to be realistic. Know that this is a difficult time of the year when it comes to food temptation, and you're going to be faced with holiday goodies that you'll want to indulge in a little. There's nothing wrong with that. Try not to get overwhelmed and let that throw you off track. Stay focused and cut yourself a little slack. Oh, and keep mini candy canes around at all times. They're festive, low in calories, sweet, and great for killing cravings. For more tips and tricks, click here for our TOP ATE holiday survival strategies. Happy, happy!!!

Dear HG,

I see that you have adorable recipe cards for sale now. Are these recipes new or have they already been featured online or in your books?

Card Curious
Dear Card Curious,

The (released-just-yesterday) recipe cards ARE adorable -- thank you for noticing! They come as a set called Hungry Girl Chew the Right Thing: Supreme Makeovers for 50 Foods You Crave. The deck contains 50 great swaps -- easy, delicious, guilt-free recipes -- and features full-color photos of all of them. These recipes are carefully selected HG CLASSICS, not brand-new ones. There are favorites from the first HG book (Lord of the Onion Rings, Magical Low-Calorie Margarita, and Eggs Bene-chick, to name a few), some from 200 Under 200 (Cinnamon-Vanilla French Toast Nuggets, So Low Mein with Chicken, Red Velvet Insanity Cupcakes, and more), and even a few favorites that haven't been featured in an HG book yet (like Planet Hungrywood Sweet & Cap'n Crunchy Chicken and Exploding Chicken Taquitos). I think of the recipe card set as a FANTASTIC companion to the books, a GREAT gift for HG fans, and a must-own item for anyone who enjoys cute things and great-tasting, no-guilt food. I truly hope you love it as much as I do! And BTW, the next HG COOKBOOK (loaded with a TON of brand-new recipes!) will be out at the end of March. Ahhhhhhhhhhh!

Today, December 9th, is National Pastry Day. Whip up HG's Crazy-Delicious Cheesy Cherry Danish. It's life-changingly incredible and completely guilt-free.
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