chocolate cupcakes with icing and heart-shaped sprinklesCan you eat your cake and still lose weight? Our answer is, yes. While most baked treats are high in calories, it’s important to begin learning how to balance eating food you want in order to help you from binging your cravings later on. If you can learn how to enjoy your cravings without going overboard, there is cake in your future. Here’s how to eat sweet treats when on a diet this season without feeling guilty or getting off track of your weight-loss goals.

Eat Your Cake Early

A helpful tip is to eat heavier foods, such as dessert, during the middle of the day so your body has more time to digest. Giving your body the proper amount of time to digest food is an important part of weight loss. Eating big desserts or heavy meals late in the day may cause you to gain weight because your body doesn’t have enough time left to burn off the added calories. Switch it up and eat your dessert around lunch to make sure you have time to digest. If you’re tempted to indulge in sweets at night, try to take a walk around the neighborhood after to help fuel your digestion and burn away the calories quickly.

Cherry on Top

The best way to improve the nutrition of your desserts while dieting is to include fruit as the main ingredient. Baking sweet treats with fruit in them is a great way to still treat your sweet tooth while also getting your daily dose of much-needed fruits. Use fruits natural sweetness to enhance your baking and make you feel fuller. Adding fruits to your favorite baked treats is a great way to add extra antioxidants and enjoy dessert without feeling guilty.

Substitute with Low-Fat Options

A great way to save yourself from extra calories is to substitute baking ingredients with healthy alternatives when possible. Even cutting just 100 calories out of your dessert can add up to saving you 10 pounds a year. Great alternatives for most recipes include using applesauce instead of butter or almond milk instead of milk or cream. Find ways to cut some of the calories and you’re on the way to enjoying a dessert that is better for you without ever compromising taste.

Exercise Extra

While it might seem obvious, the best way to ensure you don’t gain weight from your sweet treats is to exercise extra. Add more cardio to your workout routine whenever you’ve felt you’ve eaten a little too much dessert. Exercising is important for all your weight-loss goals and should be a priority, especially during the holiday season. Adding an extra day of exercise to your routine this holiday season will keep your weight loss on track and allow you to eat your dessert deservingly.