No time to cook, but need a few healthy holiday tips?

Take a look at these put together by dietitians and nutritionists from each Charleston area hospital!

Keep temptation from view: Replace candy bowls with fruit and nuts, wrap up and store leftovers and keep tempting foods in cupboards instead of on counters.

Keep it petite so you will be too: Don't cover your plate completely with food. When cooking, halve recipes, use small cookie cutters, mini cake pans and cook only for the expected number of guests.

Choose "exceptional" foods: Incorporate beneficial foods like fruits and vegetables and at least two or more non-starch vegetables in your holiday meals.

Beware of F.B.I. (Food Borne Illness): Refrigerate foods promptly, at least within two hours.

Spend time outdoors with the ones you love: go for a walk, play a game of football, go for a bike ride, etc.

Savor the Flavor: Enjoy the quality of food, eat slowly and watch your portions.

Don't stay glued to the food: Mingle with friends and hit the dance floor!

Survey the table: Determine what foods are worth the calories. Why waste calories on foods that don't bring you pleasure?

Eat a snack: If you arrive at a party starving, you'll be more likely to overindulge.

Eat your calories instead of drinking them: Stick to lower calorie drinks (diet sodas, water, light beer) instead of punches, eggnogs, and mixed drinks that can have up to 500 calories per cup.

Drink water: Sip a large glass of water between every alcoholic drink or non-alcoholic punch or eggnog. This will help keep you hydrated and you'll drink fewer calories throughout the night.

Be a gracious host: Provide nutritious and lower calorie foods like fruits, vegetables, and lean meats.

Be a thoughtful guest: Bring a lower-calorie dish to share.

Get food off of your mind: At holiday gatherings, find a comfortable spot across the room and focus on people instead of eating. Remember that this time of year is not about food but about fellowship and spending quality time with family and friends.

Don't graze: Put leftover food away to avoid unnecessary grazing.

Drop out of the "clean plate club": Leave a few bites behind every time you eat, especially if you are eating something you don't really care for.

Be realistic: Don't try to lose weight during this time of year. Your goal should be to maintain your present weight.

On behalf of your Charleston area hospitals and the South Carolina Hospital Association, we wish you a happy and healthy holiday season!